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Who's In Your Boat?
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Submitted by Apostle Kelvin Pendleton, 3/25/2003

Mark Chapter 4

1 And he began again to teach by the sea side: and there was gathered unto him a great multitude, so that he entered into a ship, and sat in the sea; and the whole multitude was by the sea on the land.
2 And he taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in his doctrine,

35 And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side.
36 And when they had sent away the multitude, they took him even as he was in the ship. And there were also with him other little ships.
37 And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full.
38 And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish?
39 And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.
40 And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?
41 And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?

Recently in my travels, I  had the opportunity to speak at an outreach center in
North Florida.  It was a very prosperous visit and will most likely be conducting ministry in that area soon, trying to help that same church with it's development and to try to reach out to the area to leave tradition and seek a close relationship with God.  But while seeking God as to what He wanted me to teach while at the outreach center, he attracted me to this passage in Mark, with the question, "Who is riding in your boat?"  We can look at these passages to see a lot of key things that happened in which we can apply to our daily lives, so I would like to share them with you so that we can all meditate on it and keep it to heart.  It begins by Jesus teaching the multitude which includes the disciples which followed Him.  So many showed up to listen, that Jesus had to teach from the ship as they gathered on the seashore.  When He was done teaching He said that it is time to pass to the other side of the sea.  So they gathered into the ships after taking care of and sending away the multitude.  You can imagine being ministers how Jesus must have felt after teaching for that long period of time.  So Jesus went to the back of the ship to get some rest as the boat and other little boats began to make their journey to the other side as Jesus said.

But on the way, a great wind came out of no where.  Now, even today this occurrence still happens.  The storms of the Sea are caused by the hot winds that are funneled through the Galilean country side, mixing with the cold air.  The most powerful winds are the ones that come off the hills of the Golan Heights, which are to the east of the Sea and winds from Mount Herman. Many boats have been lost in the violent storms.  So you can imagine how the disciples must have felt as they panicked when the waves began to crash against the side of the boat, and began to take on water.  Picture it in your minds as maybe they used buckets or cups frantically trying to get the water out of the boat to keep it from sinking.  Finally, Mark's account says the boat was now full of water.  Luke's account in chapter 8 says "they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy."  So, they realized that Jesus was on the boat with them, and they ran to Him for help.  They were trying to figure out why Jesus was asleep on a pillow while all the boats were going through the storm.  Why would Jesus be so calm in the midst of a storm in which they could all die? So, Jesus got up and rebuked the storm, and the winds and the waves ceased.  His question to them, "Why are you fearful?  And where is your faith?"

Now wait, a strong storm, boats filled with water, and He wanted to know why they were afraid?  Would you all be afraid in this situation?  But let us take a closer look.  Who can tell me of a boat that can be filled with water and still stay afloat?  I am no engineer or boat designer, but I don't know if any boats that can stay full of water and not sink.  But, both Mark and Matthew said that the boats was full of water.  They missed the not so obvious but plain as day miracle, that although the storm was raging, they were not sinking.  Even though the boat was full of water, the were not sinking.  Let us liken this to the storms of life.  We often say that we try to keep our heads above water.  We consider sinking as being overcome by our problems, trials, and tribulations.  But through the storms of life that we go through as children of the Almighty King, we are not...we will not sink.  There will be storms, there will be trials, but it is a testing of the thing Jesus questioned them about: Faith.  The kind of faith in which no matter what is going on, you can have the same peace which Jesus had, to just relax knowing that God will take care of you.  But sometimes we get into situations in which we get very afraid.  But it's in that same fear in which that old snot nosed, bad breath, no good devil can take advantage of us and bring us to defeat.  Let us remember, 2 Timothy 1:7 - "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."

We see the sound mind Jesus had on the boat, but the disciples instead had the spirit of fear.  But one thing the disciples realized, is that when they were afraid, and when they realized they could not handle it on their own, they turned to Jesus.  We get in the situations often, and we must remember to turn to Jesus whether the problem is great or small.  But ultimately, we should get ourselves to the point where when the storms come, we are calm, and we trust that God will take care of us.   And most importantly, to recognize that there are things in life that we cannot take into our own hands, and we must allow God to do the things He needs to do to fulfill His promise to us.  Brothers and sisters, if He promised it, it will come to pass, and He will take care of you until it does.  But you must trust Him; have no fear, but have faith!  So in our situations that we are in now, let us all say in Jesus' name, "Peace", and "Be still".  In ministry, in families, relationships, friendships, jobs, finances, or whatever it may be; you speak to it, "Peace, be still".  Do it in Jesus name and trust God to fulfill His promise.

The key in this scripture is this; Jesus spoke something which created a promise.  He said, "Let us pass over unto the other side."  If Jesus said it, then no winds, no waves, nothing can stop it from coming to pass.  God said, "Let there be light," and there was light.  "Let there be a firmament in heaven..", and it happened.  The disciples missed that point, which is why they panicked.  And that is why we often panic, because we forget that Jesus said that He will never leave us nor forsake us.   That is, of course, if Jesus is the one in your boat.  If Jesus is on the inside of you as your Lord and Saviour, we must remember that He will keep His promise to be with us always.  He promised us a comforter, the Holy Spirit, and that same comforter is there for us always to turn to.  And in our lives, in our struggles, in our sufferings, in our trials and tribulations, just as the disciples did not sink, neither will we.   So don't fear, have faith knowing who is traveling with you on your boat.  And one of my favorite scriptures ties in to this as I may the peace of God which passes all understanding guard your heart and mind through Christ Jesus.  Amen.