Even the Wind and the Sea Obey Him
IT’S WORTH CONSIDERING
Mark 4:35-41 tells of Jesus’ power over a storm on the Sea of Galilee. Some of His disciples
experienced firsthand that Jesus was no ordinary man. The account ends with them saying fearfully, “Who then is this that even the wind and the sea obey Him?” This is the passage I thought of as I watched the devastation from Hurricane Sandy. A gigantic 1000 mile wide storm strikes at the heart of America exactly at high tide under a full moon a week before our elections. You may choose to believe that it was just a freak example of natural phenomena, but I have trouble believing that. If the wind and the sea obeyed Jesus when He walked the earth, I see no reason to think anything has changed.
The question, of course, is why? What is God saying, and is anyone listening? It’s great to see so many people displaying American flags on their cars in a display of support and the “American spirit.” I love it when we pull together to help one another when bad things happen, but I think we’re missing the point. Where is our dependence on God? Where is our fear of God? What more does He have to do to get our attention? The power of this enormous storm is beyond our comprehension, yet it is infinitesimal compared to the power of God. If God could sneeze, the result would make Sandy look like a soft summer breeze.
So, what was God saying by sending Sandy? Did she represent judgment for America’s increasing sinfulness? Perhaps. Did she represent His judgment for America’s treatment of Israel? Perhaps. Was God simply putting on a display of His power to wake us up? Perhaps.
AS I SEE IT
We can’t know for certain, but we can learn from some of His past displays. The one that
comes to my mind is the whole account of the Exodus from Egypt. I think it was to be a reference point for all subsequent revelations to the world of God’s character, holiness, and power. Exodus 12:12 reveals that God was executing judgments against the gods of Egypt. His goal wasn’t to destroy the people. It was to destroy one of the most highly regarded collections of false gods on earth. He allowed the people to remain…to proclaim His name through all the earth (Ex. 9:15-16). That’s exactly what happened. The surrounding nations heard about what God did, and they trembled (Ex. 15:3, 7, 15). Even Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, got the point after the plagues. “Now I know that the LORD is greater than all the gods…” (Ex, 18:11).
God had blessed Egypt, but Egypt had made itself an enemy of God. (Sound like America?) God’s judgments of the plagues and the Red Sea miracle weren’t just punishment for bad deeds. He was putting down an oppressive evil in order to liberate people. He loved the people but hated the whole Satan-inspired system that kept them in bondage (both the Jews and the Egyptians). Why did He want them freed? So they could worship the one true God (Ex. 12:31). God had orchestrated the events of the Exodus to reveal His glory by establishing His name on a global level. Then, after He had the world’s attention, He drew His people to Himself to establish a way of worship that all the other nations could enter.
Even in the fury of His wrath, God was drawing the people of the world to Him. Today is no different. He reveals His glory to the nations in order to receive glory from the people through worship. He wants to remove everything that stands in the way of true worship. All the false gods must go. Could this be what Sandy was all about? Could this be America’s last chance to “get it right?”