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The Debilitating Power of Fear

April 19, 2019

Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side [of the lake] while he dismissed the crowd. Matthew 14:22

We are told here that Jesus “made” the disciples get into the boat. That is very significant. Jesus made them do this. He put them in a situation that would turn out to be very frightening. Presumably they wanted to stay with Jesus while he dismissed the crowds, but he said, “No, I want you to go on your own to the other side of the lake.”

Remember, the disciples had already been in a storm on the lake when Jesus was with them. The important thing about this story is that Jesus put the disciples in a situation where they would face a storm without his visible presence. That’s how it is for us today.

Jesus was saying to the disciples, “You have learned to trust me when I am physically with you in the boat. Now I want you to learn to trust me when you cannot see me.”

Nothing is more debilitating than the power of fear. What we have here is one of the Bible’s great stories on overcoming fear.

Can you think of a recent situation when you were debilitated by the power of fear? Do you think it is possible to learn to trust Jesus in these kinds of situations?


The Author
Colin Smith

Colin Smith is the senior pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He has authored a number of books, including Heaven, How I Got Here and Heaven, So Near - So Far. Colin is the president and teacher for Unlocking the Bible. Follow him on Twitter.



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