Obedience

February 6, 2021

And Peter answered Him and said, "Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water." So He said, "Come." And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus (Matthew 14:28-29)

Getting out of the boat and walking on the water to Jesus was not motivated by personal pride. Peter had nothing to prove to the disciples, to Jesus, or to himself. It was motivated by the desire to be with Jesus because with Jesus there is safety and security. Never forget that. To be ‘in Christ Jesus’ and to have Christ Jesus ‘in you’ is to be in His presence where there is safety and security. Did Jesus understand Peter’s motive? Yes. He answered Peter’s request by inviting him to come to Him.

“Jesus never rejects weak faith, but accepts it and builds on it. He also never rejects weak and imperfect love. With great patience and care He takes the love of His children and, through trials and hardships as well as successes and victories, builds that love into greater conformity to His own love” (John MacArthur).

In Hebrews 11:1 we read, Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. The writer then proceeds through the remainder of the chapter to define faith in terms of actions. The predominant action that defines faith is ‘obedience’. By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks (11:4). By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going (11:8). By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son (11:17).

The Apostle James wrote, For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also (James 2:26). Peter’s request to come to Jesus was motivated by faith in Jesus based on his love for Jesus and the desire to be with Jesus. Jesus answered that motive, that love, and his desire. Why? Because of His love for Peter and His love for the other disciples. Peter was willing to act on his faith in Jesus. Jesus was willing to honor Peter’s faith not only for Peter’s sake, but also for the sake of the other disciples. Through Peter’s actions the others would come to understand what love for, devotion to, and faith in Jesus was really all about. It’s not about us, it’s all about Jesus. When we are willing to cast all our cares aside to be in the presence of Jesus, He will honor that faith and invited us to come to Him.

“Thank You, Lord, for Peter’s example of what it means to set our hands to the plow and not look back. Thank You for answering Peter’s love and faith with the invitation to come to You. Lord, know my heart today that I want to continue to live in Your presence. Through Your Holy Spirit continue to develop and prove my love and faith to You daily. To Your honor and glory I ask, Amen.”

Pastor

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