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LUKE: GOSPEL OF CERTIFYING THE CHRISTIAN FAITH
Part XXIX: God's Certifying Jesus To Be God Incarnate By The DIVINE Authority Of His Words
Lesson: The quieting of the storm and its affects by a drowsy, newly awakened Jesus' words, and that before astounded, experienced Galilean fishermen revealed the divine authority of Christ's words.
- A question that unbelievers might make about the Christian faith is as follows: "I see the wisdom of Jesus in His parables, but perhaps He was just a brilliant human, a genius and not truly God! Is there any evidence that Jesus' influence was not just human prowess, that He was cleary presented as being divine?!"
- Luke recorded an event to reveal the degree to which one was to view Jesus' words as being divine:
- God's Certifying Jesus To Be God Incarnate By The DIVINE Authority Of His Words, Lk. 8:22-25.
- Luke's Gospel was written admittedly to prove the credibility of the Christian faith, Luke 1:4.
- Luke 8:22-25 reveals the divine authority of Jesus' words seen against the backdrop of His human frailty:
- On a certain day, Jesus told His disciples to take Him across the Sea of Galilee, 8:22. Now, for this statement to represent the w ill of God, reflecting on the credibility of Jesus' words, nothing could keep Jesus and His disciples from making it across the water to the shore on the other side of the Lake.
- However, several events occurred that made this command of Jesus seem futile, threatening the credibility not only of the statement, but thereby of His words and thus His personal identity:
- While crossing the Sea, a sudden, powerful windstorm arose, whipping up the water's waves until they crashed into the boat, filling it with water and jeopardizing its occupants' lives, Lk. 8:23.
- Additionally, Jesus was asleep on the boat's leather rowing cushion that lay on the four by six foot platform at the rear of the typical first century A.D. Galilean fishing boat, Luke 8:23a. His fatigue in the midst of this windstorm pictured the depth of His physical weakness at the time, raising a striking contrast between his human frailty and the great, threatening powers of the storm to the contrary.
- Jesus' human frailty versus the threat of the wind and waves is further augmented by the fear of these seasoned Galilean fishermen. This storm had to have been unusually severe as these disciples were experienced fishermen who had mad e a living on the sea, cf. Lk. 5:1-3. Thus, we are assured that the threat to their lives was not an imaginary one, but very real and quite dire!
- Accordingly, the idea that they would actually make it to the other side of the Lake seemed so remote that the disciples wakened Jesus, announcing to Him that they were perishing, Luke 8:24a.
- Yet, Jesus' words were demonstrated to be of divine, not human origin, Lk. 8:24b-25:
- Though in a weak condition in being awakened by the disciples as seen in even the windstorm being unable to rouse Him, Jesus stilled both the storm and waves with a mere verbal rebuke, Luke 8:24.
- Considering the forces and lack of force in this reversal of fortunes, the power behind Jesus' words had to arise from a Source other than human. (a) Violent windstorms arise from currents of air that vary in temperature due to enormous amounts of heat generated by the sun. For such a windstorm suddenly to become quiet demands a huge equalization of energy in the atmosphere. (b) The raging waves calmed down, something that would take an equally great amount of power . (c) The fact that this happened from the verbal command of a drowsy man suddenly awakened from a slumber so sound that the windstorm and waves that flooded the boat couldn't rouse Him showed that it could not have been human energy, but only divine that caused these forces to abate.
- Also, the complaint of Jesus following the threat revealed the divine credibility of His words. He asked why the men hadn't trusted His word that they would make it across the Lake, Lk. 8:25.
- The astounded response of the seasoned Galilean fishermen, that Jesus' mere words would silence the wind storm and the waves also testifies to the divine authority behind Jesus' words, Lk. 8:25b.
Application: (1) Be sure that whenever Christ says something, it is backed up by all the supernatural power of Almighty God, for Jesus is God's Messiah and Son as He claimed to be in His earthly ministry! (2) Though Jesus is fully human, a nd knew the weakness of being such, He is also wholly divine in nature! This event demonstrates the divine and human natures of our Lord!