This is a familiar story; actually it serves as the ending of the story of the feeding of the 5,000, connected as it is with the previous passage. Since it is a familiar narrative, and since you have a link to the text to refresh your recollection, let’s just talk about the story for a bit; grab a cup of coffee, and let’s chat…
This is not the first story about Jesus, the disciples and a boat on the Lake that we have seen in Matthew’s narrative, and it is inexorably linked with the story we have seen already in chapter 8. Look at the similarities:
In both scenes, the disciples are afraid (8:26 cf. 14:26). In both scenes, Jesus says they are of little faith (8:26 cf. 14:31). In 8:25, they called upon Jesus to “save us”; and in 14:30, Peter calls on Jesus to save him. In 8:27, after Jesus has demonstrated His authority over the elements, the disciples ask “what kind of man is this?” In 14:33, they answer their own question: “Truly you are the Son of God.” This is the first time in Matthew’s Gospel that a human has correctly identified Jesus as the Son of God.
In light of the purpose and mission that these disciples will be called to later on, God has given them the very special opportunity to see just exactly who this Jesus was, for this is something they will need to know. As the narrative continues, they will be led to acknowledge His role and mission as well.
The scene closes when they arrive back on solid ground, with a summary of what Jesus has been doing for some time now; teaching, healing and showing the Kingdom in action.
Now that Jesus has had an opportunity for time alone with His Father, and has revealed to the disciples that He is the Son of God, we continue the disciples’ education out among the people; who do we run into first?
Well, it wouldn’t be any fun without Pharisees…