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Saturday of the Second Week of Easter – The reading is from Gospel of John 6:16-21.

Jesus takes Peter who failed to walk on water....

Jesus takes Peter who failed to walk on water by Luis Borrassá, 1411.

Walking on the Water – John 6:16-21

When it was evening, his disciples went down to the sea, embarked in a boat, and went across the sea to Capernaum.

It had already grown dark, and Jesus had not yet come to them.

The sea was stirred up because a strong wind was blowing.

When they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the sea and coming near the boat, and they began to be afraid.

But he said to them, “It is I. Do not be afraid.”

They wanted to take him into the boat, but the boat immediately arrived at the shore to which they were heading.

This episode narrated by John is a nature miracle, portraying Jesus sharing Yahweh’s power.  John may be alluding to

  • He alone stretches out the heavens and treads upon the back of the sea. (Job 9:8)

Mark and Mathew too have parallel narratives of the incident of “Walking on the Water”  following the multiplication of the loaves.

The Walking on the Water – Mark 6:45-52

Then he made his disciples get into the boatp and precede him to the other side toward Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd.

And when he had taken leave of them, he went off to the mountain to pray.

When it was evening, the boat was far out on the sea and he was alone on shore.

Then he saw that they were tossed about while rowing, for the wind was against them. About the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them walking on the sea.
He meant to pass by them.

But when they saw him walking on the sea, they thought it was a ghost and cried out.

They had all seen him and were terrified. But at once he spoke with them, “Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid!”

He got into the boat with them and the wind died down.

They were [completely] astounded. They had not understood the incident of the loaves. On the contrary, their hearts were hardened.

The Walking on the Water – Matthew 14:22-33

Then he made the disciples get into the boat and precede him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds.

After doing so, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When it was evening he was there alone.

Meanwhile the boat, already a few miles offshore, was being tossed about by the waves, for the wind was against it.

During the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them, walking on the sea.

When the disciples saw him walking on the sea they were terrified. “It is a ghost,” they said, and they cried out in fear.

At once [Jesus] spoke to them, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”

Peter said to him in reply, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.”

He said, “Come.” Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus.

But when he saw how [strong] the wind was he became frightened; and, beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”

Immediately Jesus stretched out his hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”

After they got into the boat, the wind died down.

Those who were in the boat did him homage, saying, “Truly, you are the Son of God.

  • When they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the sea and coming near the boat, and they began to be afraid. (John 6:19)

The phrase “walking on the sea” in Greek could mean “on the seashore” or “by the sea” but the parallels, especially

  • During the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them, walking on the sea. (Matthew 14:25)

make clear that Jesus walked upon the water.

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