We recently experienced a Body-wide revelation of Peter’s experience walking on the water, and it’s absolutely worth sharing (see also Shulamite Podcast Episode #398). Three things really stood out in reviewing Matthew 14:22-33—the power of the Word, and the power of the gaze, and above all, the power of love.
The disciples were afraid, thinking that they were seeing things, so Jesus told them that it really was Him that they were seeing and not to be afraid. Peter came back and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” Jesus replied, “Come,” and Peter did. We were struck by the power of the Word here. A single word from Jesus – “Come!” – carried to Peter the power to walk on water. Amazing!
The Word of command carried the power to fulfill that command. It wasn’t IN Peter to walk on water; it was in Christ’s command to him – “Come!” All Peter had to do was step out in obedience to the command, and God took care of the rest. Imagine how different life would be if we stepped out in obedience to His commands, having complete faith that the power in the Word would meet that step.
The second revelation that struck us all was the power of the gaze. As soon as Peter took his eyes off Jesus and focused on the angry, stormy sea, he became afraid and immediately began to sink. While his eyes were on Jesus, Peter literally walked on water. He experienced the stunning power of God over the very laws of physics! But when his gaze left the Lord and landed on the world around him, down he went.
Peter the Blessed Fool
But that wasn’t the end for Peter. The end, like the beginning, was love. Peter’s love for Jesus asked Him to call Peter out of the boat. “Command me to come to You on the water.” Peter wanted to be with Jesus, even if that meant standing in the middle of an angry sea. Love said, “Call me,” and Love replied, “Come!” And when Peter sank and cried out for help, Love grabbed his hand and pulled him up out of the water and back to the boat.
Peter’s abandoned love for Jesus made him foolish at times, but he was also blessed with experiences and a relationship with the Lord beyond that of any other disciple. If that’s the reward, may we all be as foolishly in love with Christ as Peter!