Who Is This King?
February 12, 2017 Speaker: Rev. Jeffrey Birch Series: The Drama of the Gospel: What It is and How It Changes Everything
Passage: Mark 4:35–4:41
What do we do when we encounter the various storms of life? Do we fix our eyes on Jesus or do we doubt His goodness, and flee in fear to what is comfortable or familiar? In the passage before us this morning Mark is continuing to narrate the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God (see Mark 1:1). And in this passage we see the power of the kingdom unleashed in Jesus’ calming of the storm. Specifically, we learn two things from this power about Jesus and the kingdom. (1) We learn of His complete power, and (2) His extravagant love. The story is simple enough. Jesus is with His disciples on a boat on the Sea of Galilee when an incredible storm erupts. The disciples, quite naturally are fearful, while Jesus is asleep. The disciples wake Him up, and upon awaking Jesus, simply by the power of His word calms the storm. He possesses complete power to calm the wind and the sea.
Not only does this text show us the complete power of Jesus but it also shows us the extravagant love of Jesus. One of the things we notice in this text is the parallel with the account in the Old Testament of the prophet Jonah. In Jonah 1 there is also a severe storm putting everyone at risk for their lives. And the only way for the sailors to survive is for Jonah to be hurled into the sea. Now that doesn’t happen in Mark’s account. Until you get to the cross. In Matthew’s gospel we read that Jesus said “Behold, something greater than Jonah is here (Matthew 12:41). From the perspective of the cross we learn that Jesus went through the ultimate storm for us, the storm of God’s justice and wrath so that we would never have to endure the ultimate storm. He endured it for us in our place. As the Apostle Paul put it to the church at Rome, “But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Extravagant love.