Have you ever been so frightened that you physically shook?
I have and it is an awful feeling. It takes a powerful fear to bring that sort of reaction.
From what I see in this story, the disciples might have been shaking with fear.
Interestingly, the Greek word for "fierce" used here is "seismos". You might recognize it in conjunction with "seismology", the study of earthquakes or "seismograph", an instrument for measuring the intensity of earthquakes. So, this was a storm that literally shook the waters! And it got them shaking as well.
Another insightful fact about this word is that it is only used two other times by Matthew in his Gospel.
Once is in Matthew 27:51-54 in reference to Jesus' death on Calvary, "At that moment the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. The earth shook, rocks split apart, and tombs opened. The bodies of many godly men and women who had died were raised from the dead. They left the cemetery after Jesus’ resurrection, went into the holy city of Jerusalem, and appeared to many people. The Roman officer and the other soldiers at the crucifixion were terrified by the earthquake and all that had happened. They said, “This man truly was the Son of God!”
The other use occurs in Matthew 28:2 - "Suddenly there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, rolled aside the stone, and sat on it."
So, God knows how to shake things up! He shook the waters and He shook the earth! People noticed and people changed!
Has God ever shaken your world? Is He shaking it now? What is your response? Is it fear? Maybe He is trying to shake the fear out of you!
The message of the storm is, "Fear not when Jesus is in your boat"! He is stronger than the storm.
The message of Calvary is, "Fear not, Jesus has conquered your sin"! His holiness is stronger than your sin!
The message of the Resurrection is, "Fear not, Jesus has conquered death!" His life is more powerful than death!
God's earth-shaking message is, "Fear not! I have overcome the storm, the sin and the sentence of death!"
So, why should you be shaking? If there is a storm in your life right now, or if something has shaken your world, maybe it is God's "seimos" sent to shake the fear out of you and remind you that Jesus is in your boat! Fear not! Speak to Jesus and let Him speak His power to your fear!
The one who should be shaking is the devil!