41. Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it. During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. * When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear. But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I don’t be afraid.” “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” (Matthew, 14: 22 to 33).
* The lake of Gennesaret.
42. This phenomenon finds its natural explanation in the principles previously explained in chap. XIV, n°43.
Analogous examples prove that it is neither impossible nor miraculous, since it is in the laws of nature. It can be produced in two ways.
Jesus, although living, appeared upon the water under a tangible form, whilst his body was elsewhere. This is the most probable hypothesis. One can even recognize in the recital certain characteristic signs of tangible apparitions (chap. XIV, n° 35 to 37).
On the other hand, his body could have been sustained and weight neutralized by the fluidic-force which maintains a table in space without support. The same effect has many times been produced over human bodies.