Sermon + Bible Study Notes: Going to the other side... (Matthew 8:23-27)

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Sometimes Satan kicks up a storm in our life to try to get us off track. On one occasion the Apostle Paul said, I would have come to you, but Satan hindered me. Another reason I believe the devil was behind this storm is because it was extraordinary in nature. Understand that most of these disciples were raised on this sea and had fished it for years…they no doubt had been thru countless storms, but in this case they all thought they were going to die, it was so severe. They were frantic. Ever been in a storm of life and it seemed like God was sleeping? When I go thru a storm I feel like I have it all figured out.

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I know what the Lord ought to do, how He ought to do it, and when…now! Remember Lazarus? They sent word to Jesus that His friend Lazarus was sick. But the Bible says specifically that Jesus stayed where He was for 2 more days. Then when He finally arrived there Lazarus was dead, and I want you to know that Martha was waiting for Him. She said, if you had been here our brother would not have died. We move now from the problem to the prayer…. The Prayer. What you do during a storm reveals who you are and what you are. Run to a friend? The storm will still be there when you come back down!

And maybe more will await you due to your bad behavior. The disciples went to Jesus first, and so should we. Character is revealed in the storm. The storms of life will either draw you closer to the Lord or further away, but no one will emerge on the other side of the storm the same as they went in! Either you will become bitter or better! What they did —they went to Jesus. Trying to have faith and fear at the same time?! And yet they are mutually exclusive…spiritual opposites! Faith and fear cannot cohabit the same heart at the same time.

Faith is looking at your circumstances thru God! That very day they had seen Him cleanse the leper and heal countless others and cast out demons…by now they should have complete confidence that He can handle their situation.

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This is good reason for all of us to keep a prayer journal. Not only a list of requests but of the answers and the dates. When you have a situation and you see someone you respect is calm as they view it, it has a calming effect on you. The opposite is true if they react in a fuss. I cried! We need to learn how to weather the storms of life…not just pray for them to go away. Oh no, we say …[even if we are! The problem…the prayer….

10. Peace, Be Still (Matthew 8:23-27)

The Power. He calmed that storm. The problem that day was not the storm, the sinking ship, or the sleeping Savior…it was the unbelief in the hearts of the disciples. Psalm They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; [24] These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep.

So let the storms rage high, The dark clouds rise. They won't worry me. For I'm sheltered safe within the arms of God. He walks with me, And naught of earth shall harm me. For I'm sheltered in the arms of God. These resources are yours to use freely, but only in public worship services or private study groups and devotions. When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no not in Israel. And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.

But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. This is a strange thing, yet it is continually happening still, despite its strangeness, that the persons, who are placed in such positions of privilege, that you naturally expect that they would become believers, remain unbelievers, while others, who are placed at a terrible disadvantage, nevertheless often come right out from sin, and right away from ignorance, and become believers in Christ.

Oh, that none of us, who sit under the sound of the gospel from Sabbath to Sabbath, might be sad illustrations of this truth, while others, unaccustomed to listen to the Word, may be happy instances of the way in which the Lord still takes strangers, and adopts them into his family.

And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. If thou dost think him good, and great, and mighty, thou shalt find him to be so. If thou canst conceive greater things of him than anyone else has ever done, thou shalt find him equal to all thy conceptions, and thy greatest faith shall be surpassed. That was, perhaps, the most remarkable thing of all; for, when a fever is cured, it usually leaves great weakness behind it.


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  • The Lesson of the Storm – Matthew 8:23-27.

Learn, hence, that the Lord Jesus can not only take away from us the disease of sin, but all the effects of it as well. He can make the man, who has been worn out in the service of Satan, to become young again in the service of the Lord; and when it seems as if we never, even if converted, could be of any use to him, he can take away the consequences of evil habits, and make us into bright and sanctified believers.

What is there that is impossible to him? In the olden time, kings claimed to have the power of healing with a touch. That was a superstition; but this King can do it, all glory to his blessed name! May he lay his gracious hand upon many of you; for, if it could heal before it was pierced, much more can it now heal every sin-stricken soul it touches. When the even was come, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick: That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.

Now when Jesus saw great multitudes about him, he gave commandment to depart unto the other side. For he neither loved nor courted popularity, but did his utmost to shun it. And a certain scribe came, and said unto him, Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. How bold he is with his boasting!

Matthew Commentaries: When He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him.

But Jesus knows that the fastest professors are often just as fast deserters, so he tests him before he takes him into the band of his followers. And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head. Can you cleave to him when the lone mountain side shall be the place where he spends whole nights in prayer while the dews falls heavily upon him? Can you follow him then? And another of his disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.

But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead. It must be Christ first, and father afterwards. We pay no disrespect to our dearest relatives and friends when we put them after Christ, that is their proper place. To put them before Christ, to prefer the creature to the Creator, is to be traitors to the King of kings.

Whoever may come next, Christ must be first. And when he was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him. And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep. And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds; and the sea; and there was a great calm. Probably no calm is so profound as that which follows the tempest of the soul which Jesus stills by his peace-speaking word. The calm of nature, the calm of long-continued prosperity, the calm of an easy temper, — these are all deceitful, and are apt to be broken by sudden and furious tempests.

But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him! When the even was come, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits, with his word, and healed all that were sick:. It was the evening after the Sabbath.

Forbidden Bible Verses — Matthew 8:23-27

They did not venture even to bring out their sick till the day of rest was ended; and the Saviour, saying nothing about their lingering superstition, began to work mightily among them. That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses. It does not look like a fulfillment, except upon the wondrous principle of the power of substitution. Jesus takes the sickness, and therefore he removes it from us. He heals our infirmities because he took them upon Himself. Is it so, do you think, that every miracle of healing that Christ wrought took something out of him?

It was the joy of his heart to bless mankind; but every blessing that he gave was very costly to him. This again looks like a non sequitur. Our Saviour knew that the governors of the country were very jealous, and that if people came together in large numbers, they might suspect insurrections and revolutions, and they would be there with their troops, and many innocent folk might be slain, and, speaking after the manner of men, his work of usefulness might be quickly brought to an end.

Therefore, when he saw the great multitudes, he judged it wise to go elsewhere. Besides, he was no lover of popularity; he looked upon it as a shadow which necessarily followed him, rather than as a thing to be sought after. This he showed in the intense humility of his spirit, and in that love of solitude which was so natural to one who walked in continual fellowship with God. Sometimes we shall really do more by apparently for the moment doing less. And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath nowhere to lay his head.

We hear no more of this man. There are plenty of dead people to bury the dead, there are plenty of moral people to see after the ordinary affairs of morality. As for us, let us follow Christ, and keep to our one business. He went first, and they followed afterwards. Yes, it is generally so. If all seems very calm, thou mayest question whether Christ is there, but when he goes into the ship, and his disciples follow him, it is not remarkable that the devil comes after him. You are worrying and troubling yourself, and you can do nothing; go to sleep, brother.

Matthew And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. And he saith unto them: Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?

The ship is covered with waves, the sea threatens to swallow it and all of us up. Can he be drowned? We carry Christ and all his fortunes, is not our vessel thus insured beyond all risk? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. Storms sob themselves to sleep through lengthened intervals of fretfulness, but when Jesus gives the word of command, the storm is gone at once.

But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him? They did not know their Lord yet; nor do we. Perhaps we have to go to sea to learn more of him, I mean that troubles and trials of a greater sort than we have known before may yet have to come to be our schoolmasters to teach us what Jesus is. And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

And, behold, they cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? They know that there is a time when he will judge them, and when their torment will begin. Say what you please, sin in men or devils will be followed with torment, with sorrow indescribable, unutterable; and these devils knew it, and they were obliged to confess the truth. They were afraid lest Jesus had come to inflict upon them the penalty of their evil deeds before that last great day.

And there was a good way off from them an herd of many swine feeding. The owners of these animals had no business to have any swine there; swine were forbidden in that holy country, and they should not have been kept there. So the devils besought him, saying, If thou cast us out, suffer us to go away into the herd of swine. What a wonderful creature a man is, as compared with an animal! A legion of devils could be packed away into these two men, but they needed a whole herd of swine to contain them all.

How much greater is a man than a beast; that is to say, how much more capable of spiritual influence for evil as well as for good! And he said unto then, Go. And when they were come out, they went into the herd of swine: and, behold, the whole herd of swine ran violently down a steep place into the sea, and perished in the waters. And they that kept them fled, and went their ways into the city, and told every thing, and what was befallen to the possessed of the devils. And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus:. You feel that they are going to worship him, or at least to ask him to come, and teach them the way of salvation; nothing of the sort.

And when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts. And there are many still who try all they can to get Christ to go away from them. Woe be to them if he grants their desire! And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city. I think I see the departing sail, — love, hope, and peace melting away upon the distant horizon, and the Gergesenes left to perish.

O God, do not so with any of us! Let him alone. Here you see the King amid the storms of nature. In the quiet confidence of faith, resting upon his God. As great a calm as there had been tempest. After great trouble, expect deep, delightful rest and peace, if you are a child of God. Now see the King in conflict with the powers of darkness. So the devils besought him,. How the demons crouched at his feet! The dogs of bell knew the power of his tongue; that was a whip whose lash they had felt before.

Saying, If thou, cast us out, suffer us to go away into the herd of swine. And he said unto them, Go. And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus: and when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts.


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A sad prayer; yet Jesus granted their request. Men may once too often ask the Holy Spirit to depart from them. They may grieve him once more, and then he will have done with them for ever.


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Now we shall see the King in conflict with the diseases of mankind, and with human sin.



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