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22 Feb 2009 - "Jesus in your boat ..."

Summary of sermon by Erlo Stegen

Mat 8:18-27

This story is told in such a simple way that even a child can easily understand it. Yet it has such depth that even the most intellectual person will never get to its depth with the understanding only.

Josephus says that on a daily basis there were about 300 vessels on the sea of Galilee. It is not very big -  about 7 miles wide, 15 miles long and 150 feet deep. But around this sea there are mountains and terrible storms arose from time to time.

This story is a wonderful picture of a person's life. They left the shore in these ideal conditions. There was no wind; it was like they were going on a holiday. However after a while this storm arose which drove them to despair that even the most experienced fishermen cried out to Jesus, "Lord save us, we're perishing". Many a times a person goes into his life-calling, gets married, has enough money and then things start to go wrong. Storms arise and only one thing will help you - Jesus in your boat. In this life we meet up with hardships and difficulties. It happens to us all but what matters is whether Jesus is in your boat or not.

Hudson Taylor lost his child in China and they would not allow him to bury his child because he was a foreigner. He therefore went out at night and secretly buried his child. Yet he did not lose courage or got bitter but preached the Gospel to them that they might be saved.

When you have Jesus in your boat you experience blessing but without Him you will grow bitter and criticize and find fault with others - even other children of God. If you grow bitter and gossip then you're a child of the devil.

Jesus was in the boat and slept for He was exhausted. The Eternal God took upon Himself the weakness of human flesh. He who knew no tiredness, who doesn't slumber nor sleep. He did it for you and me. What do you do for Him?

Why do things trouble you? Don't you have Jesus in your boat?

But if Jesus is in your boat you as well as those around you will marvel at how He commands the storm and calms the storm in your life and heart, in the midst of the calamities and difficulties that come over you.

Blessed is the one who has Jesus in the boat. You and others will marvel at what He does in your life, and you will say with the disciples, what manner of Man is this, that makes out of a person that is worthless something nobel.

When we see what God has done just these past days we marvel at what He has done in the restoration of the auditorium, being even better than the one that burnt down. As we serve Him we marvel at Him anew day by day.

You cannot afford to live one day without Jesus in your boat.



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