By this time the boat was far from land
and was being thrown around by the waves.
The wind was strong against them.
Between three and six o’clock in the morning
Jesus came to the disciples, walking on the water.
When they saw him walking on the water, they were terrified.
“It’s a ghost!” they said, and screamed with fear.
FEAR begins in the brain!
The disciples “were terrified … and screamed with fear.” WHY?
A little science.
“Fear reaction starts in the brain and spreads through the body to make adjustments for the best defense, or flight reaction. The fear response starts in a region of the brain called the amygdala. For example, a threat stimulus, such as the sight of a predator, triggers a fear response in the amygdala, which activates areas involved in preparation for motor functions involved in fight or flight.” (SMITHSONIAN.CO
However, what if there is no opportunity to fight or flight. This was the situation of the disciples. “They were terrified and screamed with fear” because there was no exit. They were imprisoned by the power of the storm. So it was with Israel when they saw Pharaoh’s army coming after them. Hemmed in, with no way out, “they were filled with fear.” (Exodus 14:10-11) And, so it was with the Psalmist. “Save me, O God, for the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in the miry depths, where there is no foothold. I have come into the deep waters; the floods engulf me.” (Psalm 69:1-2)
Given the right circumstances,
fear can produce spiritual and mental paralysis.
Has this ever been your experience?