Luke 17; Secret Rapture?

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Luke 17:33     Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it. 

 17:34  I tell you, in that night there shall be two [men] in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left. 

 17:35  Two [women] shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left. 

 17:36  Two [men] shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. 

 17:37  And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body [is], thither will the eagles be gathered together. 

 

Christ’s saying that he who tries to save his life will lose it and he who gives His life will safe it. It is true everywhere. Satan wanted to kill God and anyone else who was more popular than him. He is all about preserving himself, even if it mean killing others. Satan will lose his life. Jesus, who gave His life on the cross will reign forever.

 

Many take verses 35-36 of Luke 17 to teach of a secret rapture where the saved will just disappear and be found in heaven. The Bible does not teach of a secret rapture, and even while some people try here to make a point that people are taken to heaven, Jesus plainly clarifies in verse 37 that they are not taken to heaven. When asked where, he replies “Wheresover the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together.” Jesus is talking about scavengers destroying the flesh. That does not sound like heaven to me! Jesus’ explanation in Luke 17 makes His illustration in Matthew 24 even more clear.

 

Luke 16; The Rich Man And Lazarus

 I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

 

Without a proper understanding of what the entire Bible says about death, it would be possible to get the idea from Luke 16:19-31 that when we die we go straight to heaven or straight to hell. When we study the Bible the way it suppose to be studied, “line upon line and precept upon precept, here a little and there a little” Isaiah 28:10, we understand that when we die we rest in our graves asleep, not knowing anything until Jesus returns and wakes us up. If we take the story of the rich man and Lazarus literally then we have a contradiction as to what happens when you die, as the rich man in the story dies and goes straight to hell. Here are some things to remember while reading this story to keep us from being confused.

  

 Jesus tells this parable in the midst of other parables in Luke 15 and 16. Jesus is only using this story to make a point and was not meant to be taken literally. Jesus was telling this story to Jewish leaders and so He told it in a way to get their attention. For example, they were big believers in Abraham, so in the story Lazarus goes to Abraham’s bosom. Obviously, not only do we not go straight to heaven or hell when we die, we also do not go to Abraham but to Jesus. This is an obvious sign this story is not meant to be taken literally. The Rich man asks for water to be sprinkled on his tongue. Again if this was literal, what good would a few drops of water do? At the end of the story Jesus makes the point that if they did not believe already they would not believe though someone rose from the dead. Here Jesus makes the whole point of the story. Jesus picked the name Lazarus in His make believe story, to remind them that one named Lazarus did indeed rise from the dead and they still did not believe. And of course the real Lazarus who rose from the dead had no tales to tell from the grave as he had been dead and asleep the whole time.

For a study on what happens when you die click here.

Luke 15; Three Illustrations of Grace

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

In Luke 15 Jesus gives us three parables to illustrate the Father’s love and forbearance. The first parable about the lost sheep shows us how God searches for the lost sheep. You never find a lost sheep looking for the shepherd, but rather the Shepherd looking for the sheep. I love the part about how He searches until He finds it. He does not give up. His Word does not return unto Him void.

In the second parable, of the lost coin, we find how God searches for something that is lost in the church or in the house. No doubt we can be lost in the church as well as without. We need to be with the Shepherd at all times to keep from being lost. When we keep our eyes on other people or even ourselves, we then take our eyes off the Shepherd and become lost. In Psalms 23, David says, “The Lord is my Shepherd.” Shepherd is another word for pastor. David is declaring God as His pastor and no man. We should not worship pastors or elders or Bible workers. We need to worship and keep our eyes on Jesus so we do not get lost in the church. Thank God He can find us in the church. Let’s not be like ancient Israel and demand a man reign over us. Let’s let God reign over us.

The last parable  illustrates both a man lost outside the church and a man lost inside the church. Let’s take a good look at this one.

15:11     And he said, A certain man had two sons: 

 15:12    And the younger of them said to [his] father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth [to me]. And he divided unto them [his] living. 

 15:13    And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. 

That is so like us! To tell God to give us His blessings but we are going to go live life our own way without Him, but we still want all His gifts. Doesn’t work that way! How many people today tell God I am going to live my own way but I still want you to keep blessing me? Do we even do this corporately sometimes?

 15:14    And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. 

 15:15    And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 

 15:16    And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. 

 15:17    And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! 

 15:18    I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, 

 15:19    And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. 

 15:20    And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. 

I love this part! While He was still a great way off, His Father ran to Him. In the dark ages, Pope Gregory made a German emperor stand out in the freezing cold with no shoes, for three days before he would hear and forgive him. What a misrepresentation of our heavenly Father who runs to us while we are still a great ways off! Notice, this is the only time we see God run in the Bible. How quick our heavenly Father is to forgive! (Check out this beautiful song about the only time God ran in the Bible.)

 15:21    And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. 

 15:22    But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put [it] on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on [his] feet: 

Fact is he was not worthy to be called his son before he left. What child earns the right to be a son or daughter? Doesn’t it just go with the territory? It is not because of our works that we are the children of God but because of His love.

15:23     And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill [it]; and let us eat, and be merry: 

 15:24    For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry. 

 15:25    Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard music and dancing. 

 15:26    And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant. 

 15:27    And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound. 

 15:28    And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and entreated him. 

Here we have a son who is angry because God is merciful! His refusal to accept the gracefulness of His father leads him to leave the house, or shall I say church?

 15:29    And he answering said to [his] father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends: 

 15:30    But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf. 

That must have hurt the Father’s feelings. All this time the Father thought the son had been working in His house because He was his son and loved him. Turns out he was only working so he could be rewarded. Now that does not sound like us at all does it?

 15:31    And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine. 

All that Father had was already his, not because he had been working all these years, but because the Father loved him and called him His son. The son who never left did not earn the goodness of the Father anymore than the son who left. It’s not about works. It is about love.

 15:32    It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found. 

Jesus does not tell us how the story ends. Maybe because we decide for ourselves how it ends.

Luke 14; Excuses! Excuses!

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Luke 14:16 Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many: 

 14:17    And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready. 

 14:18    And they all with one [consent] began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused. 

 14:19    And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused. 

 14:20    And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come. 

 14:21    So that servant came, and showed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. 

 14:22    And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room. 

 14:23    And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel [them] to come in, that my house may be filled. 

 14:24    For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper. 

I think we all have been fed our share of silly excuses. When I first became a Christian book salesman in 1990-91 I was given excuses as to why people could not look at my books that did not even make sense. For example, one man told me he could not look at my books, because his brother was in Asia. As a Bible Worker I have knocked on doors and listened, as the person explains for ten minutes why they are too busy to talk to me for five minutes. Then there are the friends who live in other states now, who say they are too busy to keep in touch. Why don’t you just say you just don’t want to keep in touch? With a cell phone, it is just as cheap and easy to call me when I am a thousand miles away as it was when I lived next door.  Young people will say they are too busy for Bible study and then turn around and post on their Facebook that they are bored. Grownups say they are too busy for Bible study because they are too busy taking their kids to soccer practice, the movies and the mall.

I myself have stopped offering excuses since I now realize how ridiculous they sound. I simply say, “I failed to do such and such.” That way I am not making excuses or casting blame, but admitting it did not happen like it should have.

As a sports fan I listen to people explaining why their team did not win the championship this year. Our team had injuries. Really? And the team that won the championship didn’t? Well we had some bad calls go against us. Really? And the team that did win the championship didn’t have any bad calls go against them too?

In Jesus’ parable the people offering excuses why they can’t come to the dinner are giving some pretty lame reasons. Who buys land without seeing it first, or cattle too for that matter? I am sure the third could have brought his wife to the supper.

There simply is no excuse for not accepting Jesus’ invitation of salvation. Today The invitation goes, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20 He is right there. The Master has invited you to a supper. “The Master of the feast regards their flimsy excuses as showing contempt for His invitation.”  {Christ Object Lessons, p. 224.1} 

Luke 13; Why Do Good Things Happen To Bad People?

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Luke 13:1There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 

 13:2       And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? 

 13:3       I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 

 13:4       Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? 

 13:5       I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 

The disciples, like many today, had a hard time rationalizing how such tragic events could happen. For some reason, to some people, it just makes it easier to deal with if we think the victims somehow deserved it. In John 9, the disciples ask if the blind man had sinned or his parents. They wanted to justify the man’s blindness by rationalizing that it was somehow deserved. Jesus said neither had sinned.

Many people can’t wait to get to heaven and ask God why all these things are allowed to happen. I think they are going to be quite surprised when God turns the table and asks us why it happened! Not everything that happens is God’s plan or His will. That is another myth. While people blame God for everything, they are going to be surprised to find out, that He is not the micro managing control freak they think He is. All things work together for good to those who love the Lord, but that does not mean God wanted all the things to happen that have happened.

 For example, I always hear people saying, that whoever is in leadership was put there by God. Really? In Hosea 8, God tells Israel that they set up kings and He knew it not and had nothing to do with it! Still, God is in control, true, but things still happen all the time that are not God’s idea.

A while back I was talking with a police officer friend of mine, who was very distressed over two of his fellow officers being shot and killed by a suspect. He said none of it makes sense to him now, but one day God will explain and it will all make sense. I told my friend that none of it makes sense to God either! It was not His idea. It was not God’s plan.

 Sin was never God’s plan but yet He has a plan to save us from sin. In the meantime while His plan is being worked out by His grace, let’s focus on His love and mercy and not try to pacify ourselves that people deserve all the bad that comes their way. Let’s remember too, that Jesus is a personal savior and allows different trials to different people. For example, I know some people who are very angry at God for allowing the WTC buildings to get hit by planes. At the same time, I have heard stories about some of the victims calling and leaving messages with their loved ones, telling them not worry because they would see them in heaven. So whether or not God should have allowed that to happen is between them and God, and I as a third party don’t need to be judging God, based on something that is between He and them and not me.

 I know I am not even scraping the surface of a very complex issue here, but all I am saying is, that if a terrorist victim can die at peace with God, then why would I, a person who was not even involved, be condemning God for it?

Many people ask, and books have been written on why bad things happen to good people. It’s all a waste of time. My Bible tells me in Psalms 14 and Romans 3 that there are none that are good. So it is impossible for bad things to happen to good people, seeing how there are no good people. I praise a God who makes good things happen to bad people! I deserve death, but Jesus has given me the gift of eternal life! Romans 6:23

Jesus Wept: The Bible and Human Emotions, Lesson 1

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area and home of the 2004 Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay Lightning.

These are my thoughts on emotions and principles as we begin our study on this quarter’s Adult Sabbath School lessons. You can download the Adult Sabbath School Lessons onto your android phone here.

” ‘I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy’ ” John 16:20

Hockey is not my favorite sport, but I have been to a few games. I have seen players skating at full speed, miss the puck and slam themselves right into the wall. Some get hurt doing that, but in a few minutes they are right back at it. I am thinking, after I slammed my body into a wall like that, I would be more careful next time. Maybe don’t skate so fast. Maybe don’t try so hard, after all, you could get hurt. While a hockey player’s emotions and passion for the game will not allow him to do anything less than slam into the wall and also the ice at full speed, off the ice we have learned not to let our emotions and passions get the best of us. After getting hurt, we metaphorically skate a little more carefully around the wall and on the ice.

I have talked to people who have all kinds of pets at their home who have told me, they prefer pets over people, because their pets won’t hurt them. At least not emotionally, which is the worst kind of pain there is. People who have been both physically and emotionally abused say they handle the physical pain a lot better than the emotional pain. And to the brain, pain is pain regardless if it is physical or emotional. I have had Bible studies with teenage boys who play games with their electronic gadget games all the time. Some people find their obsession with these electronic games as being anti-social, but I have found over time, that the boys are not anti-social. They just have been hurt many times by people and so they stick to things that won’t hurt them like people will.

While our emotions open the way for grief and sorrow, we are also taught to be wary of emotions. People tell us not to sign any important documents while in an emotional state, just like they say not to drink and drive. It’s just a bad combination. We are told that love is not an emotion but a principle. That is part true and part false. Love is a principle, yes. In Ephesians 5, Paul tells husbands to love their wives, during a time when a lot of marriages were arranged by the parents. There may not have been any emotions or butterflies in their stomachs when they saw their wives. Their wives may not sweep them off their feet, but they were still to love them by following the principle of love which is others first. In order to love his wife, a man needed to put her needs above his own and the same is true today. Love is a principle which is others first.

In our church today we see a lot of emotionalism. Some are concerned that the principles of the church are being sacrificed for all this so called emotional worship. After all, the church has principles and we are not just all about emotions. We have seen drunkards respond to an altar call, sobbing while the music plays, and then the next day they are back on the bottle. We remind them that the church was built on principles and not emotions. Was it? Really? While Jesus was a man of principle He was also very emotional. He cried when He saw others weeping. He cried out over a city He was longing to save. He was emotionally distressed in His own personal Gethsemane. They don’t call it the passion week for nothing. Jesus was a man of principle and a man of emotions.

Consider this, a man and woman can be married and practice all the principles of love, such as putting the other person’s needs before your own. However, that principle alone is not going to produce anything. Now get a husband and wife to add a little emotion and passion to the principle and they will reproduce! Do you think, that maybe, the same God who planned it all out for a husband and wife to combine their passions and emotions with their principles in order to make new babies, also planned it out for His church to combine emotions and passion with our church principles in order to make new baby Christians who will also grow up in Christ to make more baby Christians?

In hockey there are skills and rules and principles that must be learned for a player to ever finally win the Stanley Cup. He can’t just skate his heart out on the ice, crashing into the wall all the time and expect to win. At the same time, he will never win the Stanley Cup without more than a few scrapes and bruises. He has to learn skills and principles, and protect his body, while still throwing his emotions and passions all over the ice to be slammed against the wall and crashed on the ice. So in the church and in life, we must follow principle, we must follow the rules, but we won’t get anywhere trying to protect and hide our emotions and passions all the time. You will never see me on a hockey rink, but I am determined to live my life the way Wayne Gretzky played hockey. I am headed full speed towards the puck or the wall or whatever is ahead. When I fall and get hurt I am getting back up and going full speed again, just like I have never been hurt. I am playing for something much greater than the Stanley Cup! I am so glad I have a Jesus who lives and loves me the way some people play hockey!

Luke 11-12; Asking to Give

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Luke 11:5 And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; 

 11:6       For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? 

 11:7       And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. 

 11:8       I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth. 

 11:9       And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. 

 11:10    For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. 

As we have already seen in the Lord’s prayer and in Daniel’s prayer, those whose hearts are filled with God’s love never pray selfish prayers. The man in this story is begging for bread, but not for himself, but rather so he can share it with his friend who has come to visit. After this parable comes the promise that we will get what we ask for, but only as we ask in the same spirit that is illustrated in the story. We ask, so that we can share with others.

Later, in Luke 12, Jesus tells another parable about a man who was not rich towards God and others:

Luke 12:16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: 
 12:17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? 
 12:18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. 
 12:19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, [and] be merry. 
 12:20 But God said unto him, [Thou] fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? 
 12:21 So [is] he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God. 
 12:22 And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. 
 12:23 The life is more than meat, and the body [is more] than raiment. 
 12:24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? 
 12:25 And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? 
 12:26 If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest? 
 12:27 Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 
 12:28 If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more [will he clothe] you, O ye of little faith? 
 12:29 And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. 
 12:30 For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. 
 12:31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you. 
 12:32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 
 12:33 Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth. 
 12:34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. 

Luke 10; Don’t Dance Before You Get to The End Zone

This is me about ten years ago at a Dallas Cowboys game when I lived in Fort Worth. This is at the game against the Eagles which was the hottest game in NFL history, 108 degrees, hence why I am not wearing both shirts.

Luke 10:17 And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name. 

 10:18    And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven. 

 10:19    Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. 

 10:20    Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven. 

For years I read this passage, and only saw Jesus talking about how Satan was a defeated foe and we all have power over him through Jesus. Recently though, I have begun to realize that Jesus was gently chastising the disciples for their pride. Always arguing who was the greatest, they were tempted to let pride take over instead of giving God the glory. I mean really, they were arguing all the time about who was the greatest in the kingdom of God when it was really rather obvious that God was the greatest in the kingdom of God and not any of them. With that kind of pride it was easy for them to start thinking that they were “all that” after God had worked some miracles in their behalf. Jesus is warning them against “dancing in the end zone” before they even scored yet. We all remember watching Leon Lett returning a fumble for the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl 27. Before he makes it to the end zone he starts celebrating, and Don Beebe of the Buffalo Bills, knocks the ball out of his hands before he crosses the goal line. He started celebrating too soon and lost the touchdown. I think Jesus is telling His disciples, don’t start celebrating too soon. You are not all that. Make sure your names are in the book of life and celebrate when you get to heaven. Until then, we always have a self to conquer.

Remember, in Matthew 7:21-23 many will come to Jesus who have worked miracles, but are not saved. They are still living in sin and serving self. We know we are right with God, not because we do great things, but because our life is in harmony with His. Let Jesus’ rebuke to His disciples be a warning to us as well that we are not “all that” just because He does something great through us. Jesus is the Greatest!

Luke 9; Take up Your Cross Daily

Merry Christmas from beautiful Tampa Bay!

Luke 9:23 And he said to [them] all, If any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. 

While reading this text this morning, I realize that when Jesus said. “take up your cross,” He was not merely talking about bearing a burden or a trial or temptation as is so often the reference today. In Roman times a man took up a cross for one reason only and that was to go die. That is what happens on crosses, death, not burdens, trials or temptations but death.

So as I read this morning, Jesus is telling me to take my cross and go die to self. I notice in this verse he includes the word “daily”. I remember a friend telling me about his flight back to Tampa from Chicago. He had been in Chicago all week on business. It was Friday afternoon and he was ready for a relaxing and quiet flight back home. It never happened. A group of women got on the flight apparently having some celebration and they partied all the way to Tampa on that plane. My friend told me, he just smiled and thought to himself, “Today is just not about me.” That was several years ago, and the other day when I mentioned that story to my friend, he said he had forgotten all about it, but that phrase has always stuck in my head. When I am tempted to be selfish, or think of myself above others, I just pick up my cross, put a smile on my face and think to myself, “Today is just not about me.”

Luke 8; Asking With Faith

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Luke 8:22 Now it came to pass on a certain day, that he went into a ship with his disciples: and he said unto them, Let us go over unto the other side of the lake. And they launched forth. 

 8:23       But as they sailed he fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filled [with water], and were in jeopardy. 

 8:24       And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm. 

 8:25       And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And they being afraid wondered, saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he commandeth even the winds and water, and they obey him. 

First of all I notice in this story that Jesus rebukes them while they came and ask him to do something about the storm. What more could they do? How was that a lack of faith? Aren’t we to come to Jesus with our problems? Is that not a sign of faith? Yes, the Bible says we are to come to Jesus with our problems, but it also tells us how, “But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.” James 1:6 Funny James even references waves tossed with the winds. Maybe the disciples should have said, “Lord help us overcome this storm” instead of implying that they were going to perish. We must have faith and remember too, in times of storms, that sometimes Jesus calms the storm, and sometimes He calms His child, and lets the storm rage on. Peace does not mean there is no storm. Peace just means you are with Jesus in the storm.

Of course when Jesus calmed the storm, it did not just settle down for the little boat the disciples were on. The waters were calmed for everyone on the waters, believer and unbeliever alike. This is how it is, the blessings we ask and receive from God are to flow over and bless the rest of the world. We should ask nothing for ourselves, but for the whole world. Jesus never prayed “Give me my daily bread”, but rather, “Give us our daily bread.” In Daniel 2, Daniel asks God to tell him what the king dreamed so that he and the other non-believing wise men would be saved. As soon as God revealed the dream to Daniel, the first thing Daniel says to the King’s men was “Destroy not the wise men of Babylon.” So by Daniel’s prayer being answered the wise men of Babylon were saved as well. The world will never know or appreciate how many of its blessings it owes to the prayers of the believer.