During the fourth watch, Jesus walked on the lake to his disciples. They thought he was a ghost and were afraid. Jesus identified himself and said don’t be afraid. Peter then asked Jesus to tell him to come to him, which Jesus did. He walked towards Jesus but was afraid again. Peter then began to sink. He asked Jesus to save him, which he did. Jesus told Peter he had little faith in him. They all got in the boat, the wind died down, and they worshipped Jesus, believing he was the Son of God.
They landed at Gennesaret. The people recognized Jesus, and they spread word. All the sick came and begged to be healed by touching the edge of his cloak. And so they were healed.
BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 5: Matthew 14:25-36
12) They thought he was a ghost and were afraid. Jesus tells them to take courage and not be afraid. Jesus always wants to comfort us and meet our needs.
13a) He has faith and then it wanes. That’s like all of our faith and very human. It’s imperfect, and that’s okay.
b) I have peace when I rely on God. When I rely on myself, I have doubts.
14a) It revealed he was indeed the Son of God, that he had power over all the earth and its elements, and that he was there for them.
b) Jesus proved nothing was impossible for him, from feeding multitudes with very little to calming seas and walking on water. The disciples probably had no doubt whatsoever who Jesus was, which was important before Jesus died.
15) Many. Lately, with this last move. My job. Hard to see the purpose though.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 5: Matthew 14:25-36
I love the whole idea of walking on water. I want to be able to do that and maybe that’s why Peter asked Jesus to call him — he thought it would be cool, too.
Great read here!
End Notes BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 5: Matthew 14:25-36
The fourth watch was between 3 and 6 am. Mark (Mark 6:47-52) reveals that the disciples had been struggling against the waves all night.
Jesus could have just appeared in the boat, but he came to them in a way to grow their faith. Everything God does is for us.
Jesus takes us to places we’ve never been, and then he’s there to help us.
We have no idea Peter’s motivation for wanting to walk on water, but the disciples could do miracles, too,(Matthew 10:1) and Peter may just have wanted to try it.
When fear creeps in, we begin to sink.
Peter knew Jesus was there and cried out to him, as we all should.
We should examine why we doubt Jesus, so we can grow in faith.
Fun Fact: This is one of the first times Jesus is openly acknowledged as the Son of God and that the disciples worshipped him as such.
John tells us (John 6:21) that the boat was immediately whisked to shore after Jesus and Peter stepped in. Gennesaret was a region, not a town on the western side of the Sea of Galilee just south of Capernaum.
God uses physical objects, such as Jesus’s hem, hankerchiefs (Acts 19:11-12), and even a shadow (Acts 5:15), to heal. God offers man mercy by providing physical items we can believe in.
After everyone was fed, Jesus made the disciples go on ahead of him in the boat on the Sea of Galilee. He dismissed the crowd and then went up a mountainside to pray alone. A wind had come up against the boat.
BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 4: Matthew 14:22-24
10a) The people began to call Jesus the Prophet. They wanted to make him king by force so he withdrew to the mountain by himself.
For His disciples: he wanted to protect his disciples from an unruly crowd.
For the crowd: he wanted to escape the crowd and not get their hopes up about his earthly kingdom
For Jesus himself: he wanted to talk to His father alone and escape the hubbub, too.
11a) Jesus intentionally sends us into the storms in our lives so we can learn from them and grow closer to God.
b) I do not like living where I am living, and I’m trying to figure out how to move as quickly as possible. It’s an extreme let down here, but I’m trying to find God’s plan for me here until I can move again.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 4: Matthew 14:22-24
I love how there can be so much packed into three verses in the Bible. We get more information when we read the same story in different Gospels. I love how Jesus needed to be alone as much as we sometimes need to be alone.
End Notes BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 4: Matthew 14:22-24
Jesus made his disciples leave for many reasons:
To escape the crowd who may have become exceptionally needy after this miracle
To ensure the messianic outcry did not burgeon out of control (John 6:15)
To be alone with His Father
Jesus needed to be with God and pray, as we all do in the midst of our daily lives and service.
Jesus controlled the storm he sent to the disciples in the boat. He let them row for many hours — till they point they had to rely on him. Perhaps Jesus was praying for them, too, on the mountainside with God.
Hearing upon John the Baptist’s death, Jesus withdrew by boat to be alone. However, the crowds followed him. When Jesus landed, he had compassion on the people and healed the sick. When it was getting dark, Jesus’s disciples asked Jesus to send the crowds away so they could feed themselves. Jesus said the crowds could stay and asked the disciples to feed them. They said all they had was five loaves of bread and two fish.
Jesus had the loaves and the fish brought to him. Jesus then gave thanks for the food and broke the bread. The disciples distributed it. Everyone ate, and they had 12 basketfulls left over. 5,000 men ate in addition to women and children.
BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 3: Matthew 14:13-21
7a) He wanted to grieve the loss of his friend alone, as well as pray for John’s soul.
b) There are still obligations that must be met despite grief.
8a) By turning what they thought impossible (feeding thousands of people) into the possible — and with leftovers to boot!
b) God loves to provide for us abundantly. If we ask him for the impossible, He can do it, and we should expect that as well as to exceed our expectations.
9) Jesus had compassion on the people and personally sacrificed to heal and feed them. He performed miracle after miracle, taking care of human needs and for humans only.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 3: Matthew 14:13-21
I love how God gives you more than what you ask for in this world. I need to remember this when I become down in life.
End Notes BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 3: Matthew 14:13-21
Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand
We will begin to see Jesus focus his ministry on growing the disciples’ faith.
I think most of us cannot fathom the depth of compassion Jesus had/has for his people. He fed the multitude not because he had to or it was expected, but because he wanted to.
Jesus challenged the disciples to have faith and to have compassion on others.
The bread and the fish were indeed from a little boy as told in (John 6:9). The disciples had no food as they relied on others to have compassion on them. Ironic, right?
Bible scholars suggest that this was a celebratory event. Perhaps Jesus was thinking this was a great way to remember John the Baptist.
Jesus thanked God for the food and again demonstrated his entire power over all of creation and the world.
God gave above and beyond to the people, which is what He wants to do for us.
Note there were 12 extra baskets of bread, one for each of the disciples. This miracle was about feeding people, but it was just as much for the disciples as for the people. Jesus needed to grow their faith in him as the ultimate provider of all things.
Bible scholars suggest the total number of people to be between 15,000 and 20,000.
Fun Fact: This story is recorded in all four Gospels, showing it’s importance as a miracle.
Many believed that the Messiah would restore manna. Here is that manna.
Jesus let the disciples be a part of the miracle, too, even though he didn’t have to. We are all a part of God’s plan, whether we know it or not.
Herod heard about Jesus and thought he was John the Baptist risen from the dead. Herod had arrested John and put him in prison because John had told him taking his brother’s wife was unlawful. He wanted to kill John, but he was afraid.
Herod was tricked by Herodias’ daughter. She danced for him on his birthday and he liked it so much he promised to give her whatever she asked. Prompted by her mother, she asked for John the Baptist’s head on a platter. The king had to acquiesce since he took an oath and so many people were there. The girl took the head to her mother, and John’s disciples buried John’s body and then they went and told Jesus.
SUMMARY OF MARK 6:12-29
Jesus had sent out his disciples to drive out demons and heal the sick. King Herod thought that John the Baptist had risen from the dead because of this. Others said he was Elijah. Herod had arrested John and thrown him in jail because he was saying it was unlawful for him to marry his brother’s wife. She did not like John and wanted him killed, but Herod feared John and protected him. He liked to listen to John.
On Herod’s birthday, he gave a banquet for his high officials. Herodias’ daughter dance for him, and he promised her he’d give her whatever she asked up to half his kingdom. The girl asked her mother what to ask for. She asked for the head of John the Baptist. The king could not back down. He immediately had John the Baptist beheaded and his head brought. The girl gave it to her mother, and John’s disciples buried John’s body.
BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 2: Matthew 14:1-12 Along With Mark 6:12-29
3) He thought Jesus was John the Baptist raised from the dead. Because he knew John to be a prophet and genuinely believed this could happen. He was superstitious, and he felt guilty over killing him. Plus, scholars say John the Baptist looked a lot like Jesus.
4a) Herodias did not like how John said her marriage to Herod was unlawful. She wanted him dead so she concocted a scheme to do so.
b) She used her to dance and lure the king into promising her whatever she asked for.
c) He wanted to save face. He could not back down fearing he’d appear weak and his word would not be trusted.
5) Sin breeds sin, and it’s best to stop it as soon as possible rather than keep sinning when you know it to be wrong.
6) That they took John’s body to bury it, as was appropriate and that they told Jesus. This could have been because they knew how close they were or they wanted to Jesus to know becuase he may be in danger, too
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 2: Matthew 14:1-12 Along With Mark 6:12-29
The saddest part of this story is how a mother uses her daughter to commit murder essentially. This obviously is not how a good parent should act. Also, Herod is very superstitious.
Great Gift Idea!
End Notes BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 15, Day 2: Matthew 14:1-12 Along With Mark 6:12-29
A tetrarch was a ruling of four people. In this case, when Herod the Great died, each of his four sons received a portion of the territory. This was a title, but Herod wanted to be called king. Herod (known as Herod Antipas) asked Roman Emperor Caligula for the title but was denied. He ruled over Galilee and therefore had heard a lot about Jesus. He thought Jesus might be John the Baptist reincarnated. John has been killed a year ago when this story is being told.
Herod had illegally divorced his first wife in order to marry his brother’s wife. No one said anything about this out of fear of death except John the Baptist. Later, the King of Petra would declare war on Herod since his daughter was Herod’s first wife.
Herod feared what the people would do if he killed John.
Herodias’ daughter was a teenager, and the dance would have been inappropriate to say the least. Why a ruler’s daughter would dance is unknown here.
Herodias knew Herod would promise her daughter anything. She knew immediately she wanted John’s head.
Herod did not want to kill John, but he gave in to societal pressure. He pleased people rather than God.
Both Herodias and Herod end up disgraced later in life all due to this sin, and they both commit suicide. Herod was accused of treason, and he was banished.
Jesus was taken as Elijah by some because it was prophesied Elijah would come before the Messiah did (Malachi 4:5). Jesus was also thought to be the Prophet whom Moses said would come after him (Deuteronomy 18:15).
No doubt Herodias’ daughter was hoping she could request something she wanted.
The servant showered the entire family with precious and costly gifts for the dowry. The next morning Laban and Bethuel tried to delay the trip, but they left immediately on Rebekah’s acquiescence. The family blessed Rebekah and sent her on the long journey to Canaan.
Isaac had come from Beer Lahai Roi. He, whom we can assume had been praying for a wife as well, greets the return party, hears the tale of the servant, and marries Rebekah.
BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 5: Genesis 24:52-67
13) The servant wants to hurry back so that his task can be completed and so that God’s will to make Abraham’s descendants into a great nation can be fulfilled. Rebekah, who will most likely never see her family again, agrees to go right away, knowing this is God’s will, too.
14) Personal Question. My answer: Moving a lot has cost friendships and connections, as well as a lost church family. Truly, in the grand scope of things, God has it, and it all works out in the end.
15) Personal Question. My answer: Isaac obeyed God too in knowing this was the wife He chose for him. God’s timing is not our own, and if we are patient, God does bring great things.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 5: Genesis 24:52-67
It’s surprising that they left the decision up to Rebekah whether to leave right away since she’s a woman who in ancient times had no say.
End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 5: Genesis 24:52-67
After a long journey, most of us just want to get home as soon as possible. The servant knew that Abraham was old and perhaps in ill-health, so he was hoping to get back in time in order for Abraham to know he had succeeded. Rebekah showed remarkable faith and strength to leave the only things she ever knew and to probably never see her family again to follow God’s will.
Rebekah covers herself with a veil as was customary until she was married.
We have been nothing about Isaac since his near death experience at the top of Mount Moriah. (Genesis 22:19) Presumably, he was growing strong in the Lord.
Here, in Isaac and Rebekah, we can see this as a picture of Jesus as the bridgroom and us as the people.
God chose a wife for his Son (the people)
The son died and was resurrected for them
A servant, or God’s helper, was the mediator
The bride (us) were called and cared for until the wedding day
The bride (us) were loved by the bridegroom (Jesus)
Note that this marriage was an arranged one that God arranged through prayer. Modern-day love is important, but it’s not the end-all, be-all.
Last go-around in BSF’s study of Genesis, we were asked how this passage relates to God, Jesus, and us. Here was my response: A father desires a bride for his son. Abraham for Isaac. God for us. A son was dead and then raised from the dead. Isaac and Jesus. The bride is chosen for marriage before they knew it (Ephesians 1:3-4). Rebekah and us. The bride is divinely chosen, called, and then lavished with gifts. (Revelation 19:7-8) Rebekah and us. She is entrusted to the care of the servant before she meets her bridegroom. Rebekah and us.
Note how God had a plan for Rebekah from the beginning (Ephesians 1:3-4) for His eternal purpose (Ephesians 3:10-11). She shared in the glory of the son because of her faith (John 17:22-23). She was loved. Just like the church.
Isaac and Jesus were both promised, born from a miracle, sacrificed, resurrected, and prepared a place for the bride for eternity.
Rebekah ran home and told all what had happened. Laban, Rebekah’s brother, ran out to the servant to bring him to their house. So the servant, his men, and his camels were brought to Rebekah’s house and provided for. Before he ate, the servant told them his story, how he came there seeking a wife for Abraham’s son, and how Rebekah had been the girl to answer his prayer to God.
Laban and Bethuel agreed that this was God’s will so they let Rebekah go.
BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 4: Genesis 24:28-51
9) Laban addresses the servant as one being blessed by the Lord upon seeing the gold offerings he gave to Rebekah (Verse 31). They believed the servant’s story and let Rebekah go as the Lord has directed.
10) The servant was to find a wife amongst Abraham’s father’s clan and one who was not a pagan. God grants the servant’s request for the sign exactly and grants him success.
11) He says that God is the one who will grant him success (verse 42). He praised God who led him on the right road to Rebekah (verse 48). He prayed ahead of time for the one instead of choosing himself, and he recounts the story with God first.
12) Isaiah 48:11 says God does not yield his glory to another. 1 Corinthians 1:27-31 says how no one can boast before God. God rewards those who humble themselves. God rewards the faithful like He did Abraham. He wants to guide us and lead us. All we have to do is ask.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 4: Genesis 24:28-51
Just as key as the servant’s humble attitude is the belief of Laban and Bethuel in God to let Rebekah go. This would have completely changed history if they had refused.
End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 4: Genesis 24:28-51
Note that Laban was generous after he saw the gold Rebekah had received.
Fun Fact: the word master occurs 22 times in this chapter alone. Eliezer is determined to let it be known that he is working for his master who is the one God has blessed. He is filling in Abraham’s brother on how he’s doing after so many decades. He says that Isaac is the only heir, which is probably so that the family would know that Rebekah would be taken care of.
There seems no hesitancy on the part of Rebekah’s family. They knew this would be a good match for her and that this was indeed God’s will.
Rebekah was the daughter of Bethuel son of Milcah who was the wife of Abraham’s brother Nahor. She was beautiful and a virgin. She had gone down to fill her jar with water. Eliezar approached her and asked her for a drink. She gave him one and offered to water his camels, too. After the camels had drunk, Eliezar asked Rebekah if he could stay at her father’s house. He offered gold as payment. She said they have plenty of room. Eliezar praised God for His faithfulness to Abraham with this sign and for leading him to the house of his master’s relatives.
BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 3: Genesis 24:15-27
6) Rebekah offered him a drink and offered to water all of his camels when asked, which was the sign Eliezar asked for.
7) Personal Question. My answer: Our new house, new career, new direction in life, new connections
8 ) Personal Question. My answer: Immediate prayer and gratitude by the servant. A serving heart and open heart by Rebekah.
BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 3: Genesis 24:15-27
God answers reasonable prayers to show his guidance. The best part of this story is the heart of the servant. I would wager he was probably treated well by Abraham but servants in ancient times had extremely rough lives and had no social status nor class. They were nothing in the eyes of many. So the willingness of this servant to serve his master is a great picture of how we are to serve the Lord. Everything is credited to God. The servant is merely the instrument in God’s work. This is how we need to approach life.
BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 3: Genesis 24:15-27
God knows our needs before we do and sometimes answers before we even know it. Isaiah 65:24
Rebekah was the granddaughter of Abraham’s brother, Nahor. When the Bible says she was beautiful, she most definitely was. Other women the Bible says are beautiful include:
The servant made sure Rebekah was a woman of her word and finished the job of watering his camels and did not give up half-way through. Then he knew God had answered his prayers. He offers gifts to Rebekah, thanked God for answering his prayers.
Abraham is now getting older, and it’s time for Isaac to take a wife. He makes his servant promise to get him a wife from his relatives and not one from the Canaanites. Isaac is not to return. Abraham says that God will send his angel before the servant so that he can find a wife. He swears by placing his hand under Abraham’s thigh.
The servant took 10 camels and many gifts and set out to Aram Naharaim (Northwest Mesopotamia) to Nahor. He stopped at a well. The servant asks God for a sign of the one to be Isaac’s wife by asking that whoever offers him and his camels a drink be the one.
BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 2: Genesis 24:1-14
3) Abraham was concerned about finding a wife for Isaac that followed the One, True God. He did not want a pagan wife for him.
4a) Abraham is getting a wife for his son so that the line can continue, and one that will keep the faith.
b) Personal Question. My answer: My husband and kids. Unsure what might change.
5a) The servant asks God for a sign of the one to be Isaac’s wife by asking that whoever offers him and his camels a drink be the one.
b) Personal Question. My answer: We should always pray before major decisions are made.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 2: Genesis 24:1-14
I love how Abraham takes iniative to ensure his son has a wife so that God’s promises can be met in terms or having a nation come from Abraham. I love the servant too, especially how he ensures the chosen one for Isaac waters his camels as well. Shows what a big heart she would have.
End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 15, Day 2: Genesis 24:1-14
Fun fact: This is the longest chapter in the book of Genesis. Fitting that it’s on Isaac finding a wife like Jesus found us.
We’ve met Eliezer before in Genesis (Genesis 15:2). The servant in charge of the household was special indeed in ancient times. They were often extremely close to their masters, more like family than anything else.
Swearing under the thigh indicated the seriousness of the oath.
Abraham feared his death was near (Sarah has been dead 3 years and Abraham is now 140 years old), so he made sure all of his instructions were clear. His priority now was carrying on the family line. Since there were in the middle of the desert with no one around except pagans who were still few and far between, it was hard to find a wife.
The Journey back to Ur from whence Abraham came was a long one (many months in ancient times where camels were used for travel). it as about 900 miles. You can assume that each camel carried supplies and the gifts the servant was to give the bride’s family.
Note that Eliezer did not ask God for a woman of beauty. It was more important her heart. Watering 10 camels would take at least an hour of laborous work becuase you would have to draw up galllon after gallon. Note that he also asked God for a sign that was possible. Too many of us ask for miraculous signs that is not possible and then we’re disappointed when the sign doesn’t come. This sign was most definitely possible, and God answered.