King Canute lived until 1035. King Canute the Great, the legend says, seated on his throne on the seashore, waves lapping round his feet. Canute had learned that his flattering courtiers claimed he was "So great, he could command the tides of the sea to go back". Now Canute was not only a religious man, but also a clever politician. He knew his limitations - even if his courtiers did not - so he had his throne carried to the seashore and sat on it as the tide came in, commanding the waves to advance no further. When they didn't, he had made his point that, though the deeds of kings might appear 'great' in the minds of men, they were as nothing in the face of God's power.
"Let all men know how empty and worthless is the power of kings. For there is none worthy of the name but God, whom heaven, earth and sea obey".
What a contrast to Jesus. His disciples thought he was just a teacher, but He showed by stilling the storm that He was more than that. He is God.

1) Jesus told the disciples to cross the lake.

Situated in a basin surrounded by mountains, the Sea of Galilee is particularly susceptible to sudden, violent storms. Cool air from the Mediterranean is drawn down through the narrow mountain passes and clashes with the hot, humid air lying over the lake which is six hundred feet below sea level. This causes the violent winds that churn up the water.

I think that Jesus knew there was a storm coming. The disciples and those in the other craft, even the experienced fishermen, would not have anticipated this.

Sometimes God can allow us to go through difficult times so we can show who, or what, we really trust in,. This can give us the opportunity to grow in our trust and a knowledge of God.

2) A violent storm came, causing fear, even among experienced fishermen.

The disciples looked to the immediate; the winds, the waves, and the water coming into the boat. They thought of themselves, "we're going to drown!"

Their attitude contrasts with that of Jesus. He was asleep after a hard day of teaching his disciples and crowds of people (Mark 4:1f.).

3) Jesus is woken and stills the storm. They call Jesus “teacher”. Did they really expect him to still the storm? If so, why did they question who he is at the end when he did still it?

Ironically, Jesus uses this experience to teach them. To show to them who He really is.

4) Jesus questions their trust in Him.

Faith can chase out fear, or fear can chase out faith.

Jesus chastises his followers because they have failed to realize who he is and that his mission would not be ended by drowning in a freak storm. When he died it would be in accordance with God's pre-ordained plan.

5) The disciples question who Jesus really is.

The disciples were afraid twice in this story. The first time they were afraid of the storm. The second time they were afraid because they were in the presence of someone who had the power to control a storm. Jesus, God and man. This incident adds to what the disciples knew about Jesus, and the picture of Jesus that Mark is building up. Jesus only had to say the word and someone was healed, evil spirits driven out, the dead rise to life or the forces of nature obey him.

Some people treat this account of a true, historical event like a parable, a story with a meaning. They think that the moral of the story is that the storm represents the storms of life and with Jesus in our lives, our boat if you like, we will always be safe and rescued from danger.

Yet the disciples wouldn't have walked away with that message. Mark wouldn't have included this in the gospel for this reason. He was building up  a picture of who Jesus is. The disciples were astounded to the point of fear that this man Jesus had the power to control something as powerful as a storm. As fisherman some of them would have known that you shelter from a storm, you don't order it to cease!

This passage is about who this Jesus is. It does not offer the promise of a danger free life to all who believe in Jesus as if he was some kind of divine lucky charm! Indeed, Jesus said that his followers would be persecuted, even to death. This is something that happened to the vast majority of those disciples who were with him in the boat, and is still happening to thousands of Christians in the world today.

Sometimes in the church we tend to dwell too much upon the humanity of Jesus at the expense of his divinity. This diminishes the sense of awe that we should have when we come into his presence. It can also diminish the priority that we give to wholeheartedly worshipping, serving and following him.

This Jesus is great and mighty. Yet he cares for you and me. He calls us to respect who he is and what he has done for us. He invites us to have a life transforming faith in him.

This passage is centred on the last question. ' Who is this Jesus ? '

C.S.Lewis, "We are faced then with a frightening alternative. The man we are talking about was ( and is ) just what He said or else a lunatic or something worse. Now it seems to me obvious that He was neither a lunatic nor a fiend; and consequently , however strange or terrifying or unlikely it may seem, I have to accept the view that He was and is God. God has landed on this enemy occupied world in human form."