Luke 8 v 24. “the disciples went and woke him, saying “Master, Master, we’re going to drown.”
This story is well known to most bible readers. It is full of drama. A storm suddenly descends on the lake where Jesus and his disciples are in a boat. Jesus is asleep and the boat is filling with water and in imminent danger of going down with all its passengers. The disciples wake Jesus and cry out “we’re going to drown”. Jesus rebuked the wind and the raging waters and the storm subsided and all was calm. “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I think I would have been pretty scared too, if I was in that boat. Fear is a very natural thing and it did appear to the disciples that Christ was asleep and would perish with them, so at first sight his rebuke to them because of lack of faith may seem a little harsh.
But not so!
The disciples were present when Jesus received a request from a gentile centurion (7 vs 2-17) who obviously believed that Christ had the power over life and death. They were also present when Jesus seemed to rescue the son of the widow of Nain from the very jaws of death (7 vs 11-17). Furthermore the disciples had heard Jesus speak to the messenger of John the Baptist, affirming that he was indeed the Messiah who had come at last to accomplish God’s great deliverance for all people. So they should have known that a storm was not going to put an end to the plan of the centuries.
Logic should have told them that they would be safe. But fear often demolishes logic, as it often does for us. They had much to learn about Jesus, just as we do. Thus, when Jesus rebuked the storm and a great calm followed they were filled with fear (a different kind of fear) and amazement at his power over the elements.
We too, have our lapses of faith and logic. We confess Jesus as Lord of the Universe but often fear that He has forgotten about us and our circumstances. We should remember that although our universe is hostile to human life, nevertheless God in kindness divinely maintains our planet and gives provision for human life. But on our planet itself storms, floods, droughts, avalanches, earthquakes, fire, disease and a host of other things continue to threaten to destroy life and somehow we feel afraid.
This story does not mean to suggest that no Christian should die by drowning. This is nonsense. But this account puts forward Christ as Lord of all the physical forces of the universe and for him nothing happens by accident. No force can ever destroy his plan for our salvation and nothing can separate us from the love of God which is in Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 8 vs 38, 39).
P.S. I should mention that a little commentary called (According to Luke” by David Gooding, has been my chief guide among others through these daily thoughts on Luke’s Gospel.