Tuesday, March 16th
This passage in John immediately follows the feeding of the five thousand. Jesus withdraws to the mountains by himself and the disciples set off by boat to Capernaum across the Sea of Galilee.
It is explained that Jesus has not yet joined the disciples when they are already miles into their journey. During the night, strong winds begin to blow and the waters become rough. The disciples struggle to make their way through the storm when they spot Jesus walking on the water towards them. At first they are terrified but Jesus reassures them. When they bring Him into the boat, the waters instantly calm and they arrive safely at their destination.
Many of us can relate to the disciples. Sometimes in our lives, we are caught in a struggle. Despite our best efforts, we feel like we are in the dark amid stormy winds and waters. The Bible calls us to put our faith in Christ, yet even the disciples were afraid when they first saw Jesus walk on the water. He assures us not to be afraid but to bring Him into our struggles. Through Him, there will be peace and understanding of God’s will.
In the second part of the passage, Jesus speaks to the crowd that has followed him from the previous day. They question Him about when he arrived, seeing as he had not left on the boat with the disciples. Jesus points out that they are not following Him because they saw miraculous signs but because they had eaten their fill. Jesus says not to“…work for food that spoils, but food that endures to eternal life that the Son of Man will give you.” We spend much of our time focusing on our bodily needs and self-actualization. In this passage, Jesus reminds us that those are perishable, and the more important pursuit is the spiritual food of Christ, as the Bread of Life, which leads to eternal life and salvation.
In this passage, John calls us to seek Christ. As Christians, we should turn to Him for both our struggles and fears in this life and ultimately for our eternal life.