Jesus Sends Us Before Him
“Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away.” Matthew 14:22 NKJV
In this verse, we find ourselves between two particularly supernatural and dramatic events where the kingdom of God power of Jesus is on display. He had just fed the 5,000, an amazing event that must have stirred the faith and expectations of the multitudes and the disciples. We see in this verse above that Jesus sends the disciples ahead of Him, across the Sea of Galilee. That does not sound like a very inspiring verse on the surface, does it? Realize that having just completed one miracle, Jesus was about to demonstrate His divine nature again. First, He fed the 5,000 and then He walked on the water. In between those two events we find this verse where Jesus sends the disciples ahead of Him. Compared to the two events that surround this verse, this information seems rather mundane, unimportant, almost like filler.
There is no filler in the Bible. Every sentence, Word, and even punctuation has life to it and will speak powerful truths to us. So what is the significance of this verse? The key here is found in the word “before”. Jesus is sending the disciples out before Him. This is noteworthy because this represents such a change from the Old Testament. In the Old Testament, we find so many verses where God is going before His people. It is God who goes first. While God had gone before the people in the past, in this verse Jesus is sending the disciples “before” Him across the Sea. God had always gone before the people to fight for them, to protect them, to prepare the way and prepare the land before them. Jesus sending the disciples before Him represents an important change demonstrating the coming transfer from the Old Testament to the New.
Where God had previously had to continually go before the people, now in Jesus this would no longer have to be a continual state. Because Jesus was going before us once to victory, then in the power of that victory He would send us out before Him as His Ambassadors and representatives. Jesus has already gone before us to the cross to use His authority and He has trained us to be His disciples so that now He is sending us out before Him to the world. We are to go and share the truth. We go before Him with the Good News and in the power of that Word hearts are prepared to receive His precious gift for them. We go before Him in His power, demonstrating the supernatural and living His love.
No matter what you think today holds for you, realize that you are His disciple, Ambassador and representative. He has a plan for your day that will be for His glory. He has sent you before Him in His power and authority
J Todd Hostetler