1/11/16: Do You Really Know Jesus?
In Matthew chapter 8, we read two accounts that show a stark contrast in how Jesus can be approached. Right after witnessing Jesus heal a leper, the centurion’s servant, Peter’s mother-in-law, and many other demon-possessed and sick people, the disciples boarded a boat with Him and found themselves in a severe, unexpected storm. Even Peter, Andrew, James, and John – the skilled fishermen of the group – couldn’t control the boat and they judged that the waves were about to kill them. Meanwhile, Jesus was down in the boat taking a nap. They all woke Him up, frantically pleading, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” (Matthew 8:25 KJV)
Jesus’ response and corresponding actions took them totally by surprise. “‘Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?’ Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. So the men marveled, saying, ‘Who can this be, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?’ Matthew 8:26-27 (NKJ).
Immediately following this incident, they arrived to the other side of the sea and met two demon-possessed men who, upon seeing Jesus, suddenly cried out, “What have we to do with You, Jesus, You Son of God? Have You come here to torment us before the time?… If You cast us out, permit us to go away into the herd of swine” Matthew 8:29 and 31 (NKJ).
The disciples – those who walked with Jesus regularly and witnessed His power consistently – panicked in their crisis. Instead of approaching Him by virtue of the power they had seen Him display, they questioned what kind of man He was to be able to command even the wind and waves. By contrast, the demons immediately recognized who He was and responded, knowing what He was capable of doing and what He would tolerate.
Colossians 1:16-17 says, “For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (NIV)
What will it take for us to recognize Jesus’ power? Do we know Him for who He really is? Do we trust Him for all He can do? We should be ashamed of ourselves for letting the demons exhibit more faith in Jesus than we do.
©2016 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.
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