Shelby G. Floyd
Jesus called disciples from among the different walks of life—tax collectors, politicians, farmers and fishermen:
As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him (Matthew 4:18-20).
Sometimes these fishermen were successful and sometimes they were not. For example Peter and company had fished all night on one occasion and caught nothing. But when Jesus bid them to recast their net they caught so many fish the boat was about to sink:
On one occasion, while the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he was standing by the lake of Gennesaret, 2 and he saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. 3 Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, he asked him to put out a little from the land. And he sat down and taught the people from the boat. 4 And when he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” 5 And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.” 6 And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. 7 They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink (Luke 5:1-7 ESV).
It was at this point that Jesus said, “”Don’t be afraid; from now on you will catch men” (Luke 5:11).
The art of fishing for men is to present the simple gospel of Christ. On any other basis the person will not be a faithful member of the church for long. The gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ for forgiveness of our sin (1 Corinthians 15:1-8). He died so we could be forgiven by his precious blood (Matthew 26:28). Baptism is for the forgiveness of our sins (Acts 2:38). This how we catch men and the Lord adds them to his church (Acts 2:47; Acts 20: 28; 1 Corinthians 12:13). Let us go forth and be fishermen of men.
Copyright © 2016 Shelby G. Floyd, All Rights Reserved
Shelby G. Floyd
Heartland Church of Christ
1693 West Main Street
Greenwood, Indiana 46142