Mark 4:40
And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?
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4:35-41 Christ was asleep in the storm, to try the faith of his disciples, and to stir them up to pray. Their faith appeared weak, and their prayers strong. When our wicked hearts are like the troubled sea which cannot rest, when our passions are unruly, let us think we hear the law of Christ, saying, Be silent, be dumb. When without are fightings, and within are fears, and the spirits are in a tumult, if he say, Peace, be still, there is a great calm at once. Why are ye so fearful? Though there may be cause for some fear, yet not for such fear as this. Those may suspect their faith, who can have such a thought as that Jesus careth not though his people perish. How imperfect are the best of saints! Faith and fear take their turns while we are in this world; but ere long, fear will be overcome, and faith will be lost in sight.Peace, be still - There is something exceedingly authoritative and majestic in this command of our Lord. Standing amid the howling tempest, on the heaving sea, and in the darkness of night, by his own power he stills the waves and bids the storm subside. None but the God of the storms and the billows could awe by a word the troubled elements, and send a universal peace and stillness among the winds and waves. He must, therefore, be divine. The following remarks by Dr. Thomson, long a resident in Syria, and familiar with the scenes which occur there, will farther illustrate this passage, and the parallel account in Matthew 8:18-27, and also the passage in Matthew 14:23-32. The extract which follows is taken from "The land and the Book," vol. ii. p. 32, 33: "To understand the causes of these sudden and violent tempests, we must remember that the lake lies low - 600 feet lower than the ocean; that the vast and naked plateaus of the Jaulan rise to a great height, spreading backward to the wilds of the Hauran and upward to snowy Hermon; that the water-courses have cut out profound ravines and wild gorges, converging to the head of this lake, and that these act like gigantic "funnels" to draw down the cold winds from the mountains.

On the occasion referred to we subsequently pitched our tents at the shore, and remained for three days and nights exposed to this tremendous wind. We had to double-pin all the tent-ropes, and frequently were obliged to hang with our whole weight upon them to keep the quivering tabernacle from being carried up bodily into the air. No wonder the disciples toiled and rowed hard all that night; and how natural their amazement and terror at the sight of Jesus walking on the waves! The faith of Peter in desiring and "daring" to set foot on such a sea is most striking and impressive; more so, indeed, than its failure after he made the attempt. The whole lake, as we had it, was lashed into fury; the waves repeatedly rolled up to our tent door, tumbling over the ropes with such violence as to carry away the tent-pins. And moreover, those winds are not only violent, but they come done suddenly, and often when the sky is perfectly clear. I once went in to swim near the hot baths, and, before I was aware, a wind came rushing over the cliffs with such force that it was with great difficulty I could regain the shore. Some such sudden wind it was, I suppose, that filled the ship with waves so that it was now full, while Jesus was asleep on a pillow in the hinder part of the ship; nor is it strange that the disciples aroused him with the cry of Master! Master! carest thou not that we perish."

40. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful?—There is a natural apprehension under danger; but there was unbelief in their fear. It is worthy of notice how considerately the Lord defers this rebuke till He had first removed the danger, in the midst of which they would not have been in a state to listen to anything.

how is it that ye have no faith?—next to none, or none in present exercise. In Matthew (Mt 8:26) it is, "Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?" Faith they had, for they applied to Christ for relief: but little, for they were afraid, though Christ was in the ship. Faith dispels fear, but only in proportion to its strength.

See Poole on "Mark 4:35"

And he said unto them,.... His disciples,

why are ye so fearful? since he was with them in person, whose power to keep and preserve them, they had no room to question, when they reflected on the miracles they had so lately seen performed by him:

how is it that ye have no faith? That is, in exercise: faith they had, but it was very small, and scarcely to be called faith: they did indeed apply to him to save them, which showed some faith in him, but then they feared it was too late, and that they were past all hope, and were just perishing; See Gill on Matthew 8:26.

And he said unto them, {m} Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?

(m) How does it come to pass that you have no faith?

Mark 4:40. τί δειλοί, etc., duality of expression again. Matthew gives the second phrase, Luke the gist of both.

Mark 4:40. Οὐκ, not) His expression subsequently was, not yet [Do ye not yet understand?] Matthew 16:9. The not simply implies negation; the not yet implies that they already before had had good grounds afforded them for believing.

Verse 40. - And he said unto them, Why are ye fearful! have ye not yet faith? Not πῶς οὐκ ἔχετε, but οὔπω ἔχετε. If they had faith, they would have known that, though asleep, he could preserve them. Mark 4:40
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