Jesus Walks on the Water

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Reflection on the Gospel of the Tuesday
Of The Eighteenth Week In Ordinary Time

Matthew 14:22-36

In  Today’s Gospel we see that, Jesus has just fed the 5000, it is late evening, and He asks everyone to proceed to the next stop in the boat. He himself waits back, to be alone so he can get into conversation with God. It is a long time for those in the boat and the text says it is very early morning, therefore all those in the boat are exhausted. Suddenly they find someone walking on the sea, at first they are afraid, but then they recognise Jesus. This is the significance of saying it was early dawn in the text, there is lingering darkness, but now passing as the light comes into prominence. And in our case it is the prominence of the coming of God. We can say it is a theophany like at Sinai, but the difference being at Sinai, God’s glory was proceeded with loud trumpets, lightning and much great celebratory sounds, here it is him, silent and quietly revealing to those who are His, that he is their Ruler, King and God of Israel/World. i.e. the hope of humanity. And I believe they understood this, hence, Matthew’s use of the early morning setting.

Then we have Peter asking to Jesus that he too be able to walk on water, and Jesus says, “Come”. and Peter is able to walk on water. Remember Israel walked through the waters, on dry land, here they are walking on water. The significance and lesson being, Israel is promised all their problems will clear out before them, but to the Christians, they will have problems but God will teach them to rise above them, so all can see and believe. But after a few steps, Peter looks down and doubts… and starts sinking, He calls out to Jesus and is saved.

Matthew 14 is then is hope (Feeding of the 5000), and also a promise (Jesus walking on water), for all Christians. God is revealing himself to us (Him walking on water, first seen blurred, but finally clearly). As it were we are transported to Sinai and God is coming to it and revealing to us himself and his glory. He is the ruler and master of the world. He is inviting us to come and walk with him above all problems and remain at His side. Don’t look at the things around and below, and get sucked into them, keep your eyes on Jesus, and believe. If you should yet sink, because you have looked down, don’t worry cry out to Jesus, now matter what, and He will get you to be standing and walking with him on water.

Today’s Gospel is hope then for all of us. Let us then pray, “Lord, we believe, help our unbelief.” Come Holy Spirit, help us to be rooted in the belief of Jesus, Lord, Saviour and Hope.

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