Luke 5: 1 – 11 spells out the call of Jesus for his disciples. How is it effected? Let’s lay it out side by side. How does it….?
Begin in repentance: “Jesus got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.” (Luke 5: 3) The call of Jesus begins with him getting into our stuff and appropriating it for himself and the kingdom.
Believe: “When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, ‘Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch’.” (Luke 5: 4) The call of Jesus requires a faith that goes deeper and casts all we have upon what Jesus says.
Build up your faith: “Simon answered, ‘Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But, because you say so, I will let down the nets’.” (Luke 5: 5) The cause worth pursuing is always rooted in the good news of what Jesus says. Just because a cause can elicit our labor and investment doesn’t make it worth pursuing. Just because a cause can stir up our passion and emotions doesn’t make it worth pursuing. Just because a cause can make things happen, doesn’t make it worth pursuing. We may like Peter have exhausted ourselves in practically working towards our goals. That exhaustion shouldn’t be a sign to us one way or the other. Our determination of whether we go forward or not is decided by what does Jesus say. We don’t pursue a cause based on the fact that Jesus says nothing about it. The fact that Jesus doesn’t promote it ought to say we would be wasting our energy if we do when he doesn’t.
(Also, never pursue a cause ahead of repentance and faith. Any cause that doesn’t need to be aligned with Jesus to begin or believe in him to continue, will not build up those who pursue it.)
Blessing: “When they had done so, (did what Jesus said) they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break.” (Luke 5: 6 ) The call of Jesus is a call to blessing. The word blessing in the Old Testament means for God to bring you to your knees. Blessing produces worship or we have twisted blessing into personal gain. That makes the blessing God wants to work in you far too small. Oh, remember when praying for blessing don’t spend all your time asking for stronger nets. Ask for a blessing that is too big for yourself alone.
Bring Life: “So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.” (Luke 5: 7) God has enough grace for us all. When Jesus died, he died for all. Therefore, when we are blessed it is necessary for us to signal others that the blessing of grace is too big for us and needs to be shared. When we bring life in this way, our stuff will sink and God’s grace and fullness will rise.
Breakthrough: “When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, ‘Go away from me, Lord; for I am a sinful man’! For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners. Then Jesus said to Simon, ‘Don’t be afraid; from now on you will catch men’. So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything, and followed him.” (Luke 5: 8 – 11)