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Daily Devotional | Surprised by His Power Daily Devotional | Surprised by His Power

Daily Devotional | Surprised by His Power

What makes you fearful? Spiders? Lightning storms? The dark? Fear can stop us in our tracks and make our heart beat faster. But not all fear is bad. The Bible describes a different type of fear, one that implies an attitude of awe and respect. Proverbs 9:10 calls the fear of the Lord “the beginning of wisdom.”

Today’s passage describes two different instances of fear. In one, the disciples are afraid of a storm and cry out to Jesus to save them. This storm was both real and dangerous. Matthew labeled it a “furious” storm in verse 24, using a word that elsewhere describes the shaking of an earthquake. The storm was so fierce the boat was in danger of being swamped. But in the face of this emergency, Jesus chided them for their fear. He calmed the storm, and their fear turned to puzzled amazement.

The other instance describes the fear felt by the townspeople after Jesus restored two demon-possessed men to their right mind. Jesus cast the demons into a herd of pigs who promptly drowned in a lake. The townspeople, who were probably Gentiles, were more afraid of Jesus than the demons and pleaded with Him to leave their region. Their reaction and the befuddlement of the disciples reveal problems of faith.

For the disciples it was a case of incomplete faith. And, while they had some faith, the inhabitants of the Gadarene village seem to have had none at all. The message? Those who have a little faith can increase in faith. Those who have no faith have no hope. It is not fear that is our problem, but faithlessness. The remedy for the paralyzing fear is the empowerment that comes through faith in Christ.

>> You may have good reasons for feeling afraid today. Fear is what we feel when we face problems that are beyond our control. Jesus has power over the natural and supernatural realms. Even if you only have a little faith, entrust yourself and your situation to Christ today.

Pray with Us

Today’s Scripture reading about God’s power prompts a prayer for Moody students, as Fall 2020 enrollment begins today. Pray for God’s guidance in our students’ lives and for the Spirit’s power to increase their faith and love for Christ.

BY Dr. John Koessler

John Koessler is Professor Emeritus of Applied Theology and Church Ministries at Moody Bible Institute. John authors the “Practical Theology” column for Today in the Word of which he is also a contributing writer and theological editor. An award-winning author, John’s newest title is When God is Silent: Let the Bible Teach You to Pray (Kirkdale). Prior to joining the Moody faculty, he served as a pastor of Valley Chapel in Green Valley, Illinois, for nine years. He and his wife, Jane, now enjoy living in a lakeside town in Michigan.

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