If he holds back the waters, there is drought; if he lets them loose, they devastate the land.
With global warming seemingly in the news every week, rising sea levels have become a real concern in recent years. We’re always being told that if things continue as they are at the moment, in just a few decades the centre of London – including the Houses of Parliament – will be underwater.
On the east coast of England, though, encroaching seas have long been a problem, largely due to erosion rather than rising sea levels, but flooding is very much a concern. Every year, a new section of sea defence is built, whilst just along the coast another is smashed to bits by the forces of nature. I often find myself thinking that those who design and build sea defences are fighting a losing battle – no one can stop the force of the sea.
That view is precisely what the disciples find themselves questioning in our current Mark Marathon article, after Jesus , with a few words, succeeds in calming the waters of the Sea of Galilee. Surely no-one can do what they have just seen Jesus do. It must have been at this point that they must have really been wondering who, precisely, Jesus is.
Throughout the New Testament, the claim is made that Jesus is the Son of God – and indeed, is God himself – one third of the Trinity. By demonstrating that he has power over nature in this incident, Jesus makes it all the more clear to his disciples who he is. In this passage from Job, we see the power that God has over the seas – he can cause droughts simply be stopping water, and he can flood the land simply by releasing the water. Since he, during creation, created land and water, and separated the land from the water, it stands to reason that he can control it. Since God can do this, and Jesus is in fact God, there is no reason why he shouldn’t be able to simply quell a small storm.
The disciples were left wondering just who Jesus was after this adventure on the water. Maybe it’s a good time for us to reflect likewise.