John 6:15-21

Talks for Growing Christians

The Fifth Miracle in the Gospel of John: Jesus Walks on the Water

John 6:15-21

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Lesson Number 25

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. The Lord’s comforting presence is not always immediate.
  2. The Lord’s comforting presence is not always obvious.

Practical Application

  1. How well do you handle popularity?
  2. How well do you handle adversity?


  1. Why did John select seven miracles, and what are they called?
  2. Why did Jesus leave when He perceived that the people were about to make Him their king?
  3. Explain, “The Lord’s comforting presence is not always immediate.” Illustrate from this portion of Scripture.
  4. What is the spiritual picture in this miracle?
  5. Is the Lord’s comforting presence always obvious?
  6. What is the spiritual picture here?


  1. To show that Jesus could be none other than the Son of God. They are called sign miracles because they point clearly to the deity of Christ.
  2. Jesus withdrew to be alone with His Father, and He knew the people had a different kind of king in mind.
  3. The Lord promises that He will be with us through all the experiences of life. He may delay so that we will go through some troubled waters for various reasons (to strengthen our faith, to lean harder on Him, to see His hand at work, so that we may one day comfort others in like situations). In this passage, the disciples were on a troubled sea, and they were straining against the oars. The Lord’s eye was upon them, but they did not realize it.
  4. Jesus is in heaven (on the mountain), making intercession on our behalf. Refer to Hebrews 7:25. Meanwhile, as believers, we are on the troubled sea of life.
  5. No. When the Lord came walking on the water to the disciples, they did not realize it was the Lord, and they were afraid. According to the Matthew and Mark accounts, they thought He was a ghost.
  6. The Lord was there, but the disciples were afraid because they did not recognize Him. This can happen to us, as well.


  1. When you have been in a difficult situation, did you feel as if the Lord had forsaken you? Or did you realize that the Lord was using the situation to show you an open door?
  2. How well do you handle popularity? Have you been in a position of leadership where people look up to you? Be sure to follow the Lord’s example when you are in a popular or prosperous position. Get alone with Him to get your values and priorities straight.


  1. Are you on a troubled sea right now? Do you believe that the Lord knows and cares and is watching? Do you believe that He can and will come into your troubled situation and bring peace and calm? Are you acting like you believe? How well do you handle adversity?

Key Verses

  • “Jesus departed to the mountain by Himself alone.” John 6:15
  • “A great wind was blowing, and the disciples were afraid.” John 6:18-19
  • “Jesus said to them, ‘It is I; do not be afraid.’” John 6:20

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