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SERMON DATE AND TITLE: 20170507 CALMING THE STORM

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Senior Pastor Phil Roland

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Pastor Ray Scott

 

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CALMING THE STORM

SERMON STARTER

 

          On Monday at 1:30 pm a predicted storm hit our region.  The winds were up to 57 mph in gusts. The storm cell of thunderstorms caused downed trees, and property damage. Electrical lines and power was cut off for some residents of Mercer County. Power in the West Middlesex area wasn't restored until Thursday afternoon. The amazing thing is the storm hit and passed over us in less than a half hour.

          In today's text the disciples were left to face the storm by themselves. The greatest storm that night was not in the sky; it was in the disciples’ hearts. The greatest fear was not from seeing the storm-driven waves; it came from seeing the back of their leader as he slept through the fury of the storm as His disciples struggled to keep afloat. Finally, they awakened Him and He commanded the skies to be silent. His voice and command quietened the wind and soothed the waves.

          Jesus knows what you're going through in your life right now. Jesus is aware of your storm. Why does He sleep when we need Him so much? The question we ask about life's storms is,

 

“Where is God, and why would he do this?”

                            (Adapted, Max Lucado, In the Eye of the Storm, pg. 108-111).

 

          That’s what the disciples learned on the Sea of Galilee. They thought the danger lay outside the boat. They would soon learn the real danger lies within the boat. . .within their own hearts. They simply lacked faith. Without faith their lives were at risk to the storms which would inevitably come. The unexpected storms came then and they still come unexpectedly into our lives. What can we learn from this boat ride in the storm?

1. Storms Come Suddenly.
2. Storms Can Make You Lose Direction.
3. Our Fear of the Storm Has the Power to Paralyze.

 

Pastor Phil  <><<

 

May 7, 2017 - Sheepfold Ministries

Pastor Phil Roland  <><<

 

CALMING THE STORM

Psalm 107:23-31 -  Mark 4:35-41

 

"Most of what we fear will never come to pass. Fear and anxiety won't solve today's troubles, but it will rob you of peace in the midst of your storms."

                                                                                                               Pastor Phil  <><< 

 

28 Then they cry out to the LORD in their trouble, And He brings them out of their distresses. 29 He calms the storm, So that its waves are still.     Ps. 107

39 Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "Peace, be still!" And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.       Mark 4

Narrative Story:

After ministering along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, Jesus asked the disciples to get on board a small ship. Their plan was to go across the lake. Jesus was exhausted from ministry and soon fell asleep in the boat. There was no reason for concern. Four fishermen were on the boat and traversing the sea was their life. Black clouds soon began to loom over them. This was a nasty ferocious storm. The ship was tossed about like a cork in the wind and wave. The occupants of the boat began to fear for their lives.

 

OBSTACLES TO CALMING THE STORM. . .

I.  THE FEAR IN THE DISCIPLES - Mark 4:40a

40 But He said to them, "Why are you so fearful?

          A. Jesus' Disciples had seen Jesus' power demonstrated

                        1. Demon possessed delivered

                        2. Peter’s mother-in-law healed

                        3. Capernum''s ill came to Peter’s mother-in-law's house

                        4. A leper healed

                        5. A man sick of palsy carried by 4 friends

                        6. On the Sabbath Jesus healed a withered hand

            B. They exulted in these victories over sickness and disease

                        1. Trembled with excitement, great rejoicing

                        2. Even the demons obeyed the command of Jesus

            C. Contrast that with the sudden advent of FEAR

                        1. Fear is probably the single emotion that keeps us from                                              

                                    following the Will of God

                        2. More than 700X God's Word speaks about Fear

            D. The Bible's mighty men and women had to deal w/Fear

                        1. Adam hid himself in the garden away from God

                        2. Abram lied to a king about his wife

                        3. Moses was afraid to speak - God used Aaron

                        4. Joshua -  God said 5 times “Fear Not be of Good Courage”

CALMING THE STORM, cont., p.2

 

                        5. Elijah in fear fled from Jezebel's whispered threat

            E. We are NOT to be paralyzed by fear

                        1. It can keep you from doing what is right

                        2. It can keep you from sharing your faith

                        3. It can keep you from moving in the Gifts of the Spirit

                        4. It can keep you from giving to God

            F. The question is, "How do I respond to fear?"

                        1. I can handle this

                        2. Why did this happen to me?

                        3. Blame others

                        4. Turn to the Lord for help.

 

OBSTACLES TO CALMING THE STORM. . .

II.  THE FEARLESS REBUKE OF JESUS - Mark 4:39

39 Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "Peace, be still!"

And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.
 

          A. The Reality of Jesus' Humanity

                        1. He needed sleep just like us

                        2. His previous hours of teaching exhausted Him

                        3. Storms can appear at inconvenient times

                        4. They can even appear when Jesus is close by

                        5. Trials aren't indicating a lack of spirituality

            B. Jesus' Rebukes the Storm - John 1:1-3 NIV

                1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word

              was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things

              were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

                        1. Jesus spoke to the elements

                        2. He admonished the Wind, "Quit it!"

                        3. He charged the Sea, "Stop it!"

                        4. He gave a military-type command

                        5. The wind and storm obeyed Him

            C. Jesus Rebukes the Disciples - v. 40

                40 But He said to them, "Why are you so fearful?

                        How is it that you have no faith?"

                        1. All men are given the same measure of Faith - Romans 12:3

                        3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among

                          you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but

                          to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.

                        2. Ancient thought, "Faith is like a muscle that must be exercised"

                        3. Real Faith must be acted upon - James 2:17

                                17 Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

                        4. It's not that Jesus was Asleep

                                    a. Note: He was very near

                                    b. All they had to do was ask

                        5. They tried everything First, then they tried Jesus

CALMING THE STORM, cont., p.3

 

            D. Jesus Reacts to the disciples lack of faith - Hebrews 11:6

                6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God

              must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently

              seek Him.

                        1. Our basic sinful nature cancels our faith

                        2. Sin always separates us from God's availability

                        3. Isaiah cries out, "Woe is me! I am a man of unclean lips!

                   4. Confess your sins and sinful nature to God

                        5. Repent of anything that keeps you from faith's obedience

                        6. Humbly ask for Jesus' help

                        7. Invite Him into your boat. . .your situation

                        8. Let Him calm the storms in your life

 

Let's pray. . .