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Luke 5:1-11 "A MOVING EXPERIENCE"
Day 58 – Luke 5
Text: Luke 5:1-11
A MOVING EXPERIENCE
Imagine the scenario as Luke wrote in Luke 5. A huge multitude followed ONE MAN walking. Then He stopped, and He asked a fisherman whom He knew, Peter, for permission to use his boat as a platform for Him to preach to the multitudes!
What a moving sight that must have been! The synagogues were too small for the use of the Lord Jesus now. Hundreds, perhaps thousands strained to hear the voice of the Lord Jesus as He taught them by the seaside. Just ONE MAN!
How could He carry on with His ministry? How is He going to manage, if the crowds swell further? How is He going to be able to continue to teach them the precious truths about the Kingdom of God and His righteousness?
RETURNING A FAVOUR
The Lord Jesus had utilized the boat of Simon the Fisherman. He must have noticed that there had been a poor catch that day. Simon was asked to do a peculiar thing.
The words were unmistakable though…
“Launch out into the deep
and let down your nets for a catch.” Luke 5:4
Peter replied politely, calling Jesus, “Master” (Luke 5:5). He explained to Jesus that they had toiled the whole night and they had caught nothing! Why would the Master think that fish could be caught just like that. “Launch out into the deep, let down your nets for a catch.”
If fishing is that easy, then a lot of people would become fishermen! They had been fisherfolk all their life. They knew when to catch fish, and night time was a good time. They had worked all night, but they had failed in their endeavour the previous evening.
Nevertheless, at the request of the Lord Jesus, Peter would do as instructed. Little did he know that his obedience would be the turning point of his life.
THE TURNING POINT
Peter was astonished at what happened next! Their nets were filled with fishes. There were so many of them that their nets threatened to break! Quickly, they summoned their partners to come to their assistance. Still, they could not fully unload the fishes caught in their nets into their boats. Their boats were already sinking because of the number of fishes caught. Most likely, they had never had such a catch before!
In the midst of their excitement, Peter suddenly realized who Jesus was! He was not just “Master” (a polite term, that could be translated as “Sir”- Luke 5:5). When he open his mouth next, he addressed Jesus as “Lord” (Luke 5:8).
Peter also began to realize his personal sinfulness. The Holy Presence of the Master must have hit him very hard, right there and then in the sinking boat, laden with fishes! This was the dramatic changing point for Peter, and presumably for all the fishermen who followed Jesus as full-time disciples that day. Peter, Andrew, James and John were probably partners in the fishing trade they were engaged in. They were now going to become partners in a totally new “trade”. This time, they were going to become “fishers of men” (Luke 5:10; Mark 1:18).
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO CAUSE US TO TAKE UP THE CHALLENGE TO BECOME FISHERS OF MEN?
If we were to study Peter’s life as our example, we would note the following things:-
1. There was a general knowledge of the Lord Jesus (John 1:35-42).
a) Andrew had spoken of Him as the “Messiah”.
b) News had spread about the Powerful ministry of the Master.
2. There may have been some tentative steps towards following Jesus; but not on a full time basis. Peter spoke about toiling all night in his fishing trade (Luke 5:5)
3. The Lord Jesus then allowed Peter to see and feel the impact of Jesus teaching the multitudes.
4. Then came a special, personal miracle. In this miracle of a great draught of fish, Peter realized who Jesus was. He was no ordinary Teacher.
5. Peter also realized just how sinful and unworthy he was. He was unfit, and unworthy to be in His presence at all, let alone be invited to become His disciple! (We are reminded of how sinful and unworthy Isaiah felt when he was given a glimpse of the glory of God – Cf. Isaiah 6).
6. Suddenly, the focus on making a living as fishermen was no longer very attractive. The challenge of following the Lord Jesus, simply because He was Messiah became a major consideration!
7. What could he offer of himself to the Messiah? He was only a humble fisherman, who sometimes failed to catch fish! Of what use would he be if he were to take up the challenge to be the Disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ? He was not a trained Scribe! It would take another “miracle” from the Lord Jesus to make him successful as a Disciple!
What would it take for us to become deeply challenged to become Disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ?
THE CHALLENGE TO BECOME “FISHERS OF MEN”
It is good to be aware of personal sinfulness. However, we must not be overcome by the weight of our sins! Let us become even more aware of how the Lord Jesus can cleanse us, and then transform us to become effective, “fishers of men”.
Let us prayerfully consider the Lord’s challenge for us to walk as His disciples today!