Why Did Jesus Walk on the Water?
Introduction: The Israelites are living in the promise land but are suppressed under Roman Law. It is the time of their great celebration, the Passover, and Jesus fed over five thousand people. They are at the point of wanting to take Jesus by force to make Him king. But, because it was not His time to be made King, He withdrew to the mountain to be alone. He is not the King of this world but of the kingdom that is to come.
The children of Israel were freed from the bondage of Egypt through Moses and now are desiring to be freed again from Roman rule. Moses is seen as a unique and marvelous picture of Jesus in many ways. In his final speeches to the Israelite people, he gives a Messianic prophecy saying to them: “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him” (Deuteronomy 18:15).
John 6:16 says that when evening came, the disciples went down to the sea, to cross over to Capernaum. The waves were rough and rowing became extremely difficult. After rowing three or four miles out into the sea, Mark 6:49 says that they were frightened thinking they were seeing a ghost. Jesus said, “It is I; do not be afraid” and they immediately helped Him into the boat and were at the shore. Interesting! When Moses led the Children of Israel out of Egypt to the Red Sea, they, too, were afraid. Moses said to them, “Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again” (Exodus 14:13).
Why specifically did Jesus walk on the water? John wanted the reader to see that Jesus is God, the promised Messiah, the One who would fulfill the prophecy of the coming King of glory.
Lord, all praise to You, the King eternal.