Mt 8:18-27 (NIV)
The Cost of Following Jesus:
18 When Jesus saw the crowd around him, he gave orders to cross to the other side of the lake. 19 Then a teacher of the law came to him and said, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.” 20 Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” 21 Another disciple said to him, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” 22 But Jesus told him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”
Jesus Calms the Storm:
23 Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. 24 Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. 25 The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”
26 He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm. 27 The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”
Jesus’ amazing answer in vs 26 has astounded me every reading to the point that I accepted always being astounded. “Yeah, that’s Jesus. I will never understand how He looks at things.” In this last reading, I can’t get over this. It has stayed with me for days. What was His perspective to speak of their little faith when water was literally going over the boat to drown and bury these seasoned fishermen?
Where I go with this below may seem way too far, but this whole passage fits under the theme of following. There is no break, I believe, as the commentaries did above. The Disciples FOLLOWED Jesus onto the boat after the two previous witnesses not following Him. I can now picture Jesus beholding these who would follow and trust Him so. I believe He beheld them and longed to impart to them a Revelation of Himself in the magnitude of later letting Lazarus die and raise him up. This could be a revelation to equal The Resurrection and the Life. I believe the magnitude of what Jesus wanted to show them who followed Him onto the boat was widened in loving them.
“Go to the other side” is very key and takes us where we don’t think to venture.
To enter a boat with another is binding your destiny with theirs. You will sink or swim with them. Definitely this is called following.
The tempest began immediately. Supernaturally coming on. So quickly they were getting buried with water.
Could not Jesus’ original intent for these Disciples right now been this? :
Rom 6: 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his.
Or Colossians 2:12: having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.
Didn’t He mean to entrust this revelation to them? If they would follow Him in baptism to death, they would be raised up on the OTHER SIDE in newness of life!! Were they ready for this?
They were apparently not ready for this. They got short-circuited in their physical, earthly life and began seeing their individual survival apart from Jesus. They were going to perish. This short-changed the message Jesus had intended to give to them. It was like Peter following Him on the water, but becoming aware of his self-life and sinking. In both accounts we know it did cause at least minor grief in the Lord Jesus, as He expressed their lack of faith. It caused the moment to fall short of the intended revelation of Himself.
If we take the nosedive to go under with Him, we go under as followers to the other side.
He loved these ones to the end and would have to let them learn what this burial with Him means at a later time. And they would.