One day as Jesus was preaching on the shore of the Sea of Galilee,great crowds pressed in on him to listen to the word of God. 2 He noticed two empty boats at the water’s edge, for the fishermen had left them and were washing their nets. 3 Stepping into one of the boats, Jesus asked Simon, its owner, to push it out into the water. So he sat in the boat and taught the crowds from there. 4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Now go out where it is deeper, and let down your nets to catch some fish.” 5 “Master,” Simon replied, “we worked hard all last night and didn’t catch a thing. But if you say so, I’ll let the nets down again.” 6 And this time their nets were so full of fish they began to tear! 7 A shout for help brought their partners in the other boat, and soon both boats were filled with fish and on the verge of sinking. 8 When Simon Peter realized what had happened, he fell to his knees before Jesus and said, “Oh, Lord, please leave me—I’m such a sinful man.” 9 For he was awestruck by the number of fish they had caught, as were the others with him.10 His partners, James and John, the sons of Zebedee, were also amazed. Jesus replied to Simon, “Don’t be afraid! From now on you’ll be fishing for people!” 11 And as soon as they landed, they left everything and followed Jesus.
It was early morning the sun was up dancing across the sand and sparkling on the deep blue water. Our fishing boats were resting by the water’s edge the sails down and wrapped for our night of fishing was over but there was nothing to show for all our efforts. Yet the work was not over so there we sat cleaning and mending our nets when we first heard the crowd. They were following Jesus the one my brother Andrew had introduced me to the one he said was the Messiah. Jesus was teaching them but as the people crowded in He looked directly at me and stepped into my boat and that is when my life changed forever. Today as we look at the lives of the 12 disciples we are going to start first with Simon Peter. In all three of the Gospel that provide a list of the 12 disciples Simon Peter is named first. Today as we come to the call of Peter we see not only several powerful principles but are confronted with several uncomfortable questions. As we come to verse 3 we see Jesus stepping into Simon’s boat and instructing him to push it out into the water. It’s here that we are confronted with this question:
- Are you on board with Jesus?
The crowd needed to hear Jesus and so Jesus used Simon’s boat as a platform to project His word. Being in Simons boat with the water around Him it created an amphitheater effect, thus carrying His voice to the far side of the crowd. Who created the water, Jesus, and now He uses it to carry His message, because just like water it gives life. But Jesus wanted to use more than just the water to carry forth His Word He wanted to use Simon Peter and He also wants to use you. As Jesus steps into your boat will you join Him? He wants to use an ordinary fishing boat and an ordinary fisherman and transform them into a platform for the gospel, so others can hear the truth. How rude of Jesus to just get into Peter’s boat without asking! But let me ask you was it really Peters boat, who created the trees that were used to make the boat, Jesus. Did Peter ask if he could use Jesus trees? The point is this so often we feel like it’s our life and Jesus needs to get our permission before He carries out His plan. But He is the King of Kings and as King He has the right to do what He wants. But notice what He does with that power and authority, He invites us to join Him. How many of us miss the invitation of Jesus because we are busy trying to boss Him around and get Him to do what we want? If that is how you are living, demanding that God do this and that, then you don’t want God you want a Gene. Someone to grant your every wish. So, let me ask you again, are you going to respond to His invitation and join Him? The bible uses many illustrations to help you see that you are either on board or you are not. In Noah’s day when the rains came only 8 people were on board, and they didn’t gradually get on board. They were not born on the ark they had to make a conscious choice to get on board. Are you on board with Jesus? Simon could have made a lot of excuses:
- Not now Jesus I’m busy working to clean and mend my nets. When my work is done when I have fixed my own nets then I can get on board with you. If the nets are not cleaned they will not last and the fish will see them, they have to be cleaned right away or the job is harder if it is allowed to dry. It’s so easy to justify disobedience. Is your career important sure but when it comes to obeying the voice of the Creator, getting on board or getting your work done Simon chose Jesus.
- Not now Jesus I’m tired from all my work. So often we make it about how we feel instead of what God has said.
- Not now Jesus I’m discouraged, I’ve failed I have nothing to show for all my work, you really don’t want a looser like me. How often does the work cycle keeps us stuck? We don’t have time for Jesus because of all of our work, because we’re tired from all of our work and we have nothing to really show for all of our work, so we have to go back to work.
So, let me ask you when it comes to Christ’s call are you obey or objecting? Are you engaging in His call or making excuses? Many of us miss the miracle of being invited by the King of Kings to engage in His Kingdom. Why, because we see His call as a pain instead of a privilege. Thankyou Jesus for inviting me a common fisherman to partner with you in preaching your plan.