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LUKE - Christ, the Savior of the World
A Bible Study Course on the Gospel of Christ according to Luke

PART 3 - JESUS' MINISTRY IN GALILEE (Luke 4:14 - 9:50)

3. Christ Teaches from Simon's Boat, the Miraculous Draught of Fishes, and the Calling of the First Disciples (Luke 5:1-11)

LUKE 5:1-11
1 Now it happened, while the multitude pressed on him and heard the word of God, that he was standing by the lake of Gennesaret. 2 He saw two boats standing by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them, and were washing their nets. 3 He entered into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, and asked him to put out a little from the land. He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat. 4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep, and let down your nets for a catch.” 5 Simon answered him, “Master, we worked all night, and took nothing; but at your word I will let down the net.” 6 When they had done this, they caught a great multitude of fish, and their net was breaking. 7 They beckoned to their partners in the other boat, that they should come and help them. They came, and filled both boats, so that they began to sink. 8 But Simon Peter, when he saw it, fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, Lord.” 9 For he was amazed, and all who were with him, at the catch of fish which they had caught; 10 and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid. From now on you will be catching people alive.” 11 When they had brought their boats to land, they left everything, and followed him.

Many hunger for the Spirit of God’s word and salvation. Everyone in his innermost being thirsts for the remission of his sins. So open your mouth and preach grace. Speak to your friends and colleagues about Christ, for they are longing for Heaven, even if they pretend to the contrary. Depict Christ before the eyes of your friends and colleagues, for they are craving for Paradise, even if they pretended to the contrary. Every man craves in his heart for the house of his heavenly Father.

The multitudes hurried toward Christ, and pressed arround him. He was in danger of being crowded into the water: What must he do? He got into a boat that belonged to Simon, and asked Simon gently to help him by putting out a little from the shore so that everyone might see and hear him. He sat down in the boat ad taught ignorant men how to enter into the kingdom of God through conversion, and by tuning their hearts to the power of eternal love. The multitude sat down on the shore of the lake, listening silently to this unique voice. Nothing could be heard but the words of Jesus and the whispers of the waves.

When Jesus had stopped speaking, he told Peter to fish. It was daytime, when fish went down to the cooler waters deep in the lake. Though Peter was most impressed with Jesus’ sermon, and called Jesus “Master”, his experience as a fisherman made him quite sure that they would catch nothing. He showed discomfort, for he had toiled all night, and had taken nothing. Nevertheless he was ready to believe the Master’s word even in matters in which Jesus would not naturally be considered an expert. For the sake of Christ’s demand, he was prepared to do this, even though he did not understand why, and even if the other fisherman would laugh at him. However, Christ was willing to teach his servant through his experience, and show him that his professional skill is useless to him in the kingdom of God where the laws and powers of the Holy Spirit apply.

Today, Christ is calling people to go into the depth of the sea of mankind, and let down the net of the word of God, probably at a time that seems completely inconvenient. But Christ sees the hidden developments in the depths of people. Listen to Christ’s command, and pay attention to one thing: Be careful to let down the whole net of the word of God, and not only a part of it, also be careful that your net does not have holes of unbelief lest the fish should escape from it. Clean your net and get ready for fishing.

The disciples obeyed Christ’s command. In this obedience of faith, we find a reason for God’s triumph. If Peter had not obeyed Christ’s word, he would have not become his disciple. Now, by Jesus’ will, a great multitude of fish are caught in the net of the experienced fisherman, so that his net was about to break. Dear brother: Today is the day of fishing in our nation. Today a great number of fish is being drawn toward the word of God. Where are you now to win a great number of your friends through your testimony, words, and messages? Obey Christ with humility. Be encouraged, listening to the guidance of the Savior, and then you will draw many to his light, so that they may enter into eternal life, from death in darkness. Today if you will hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.

Peter was not stubborn and greedy, but divided the fish among them all, and signalled to his partners to cooperate. This is the duty of believers today: not only to fill their own boat, but also the boats of the others’. Do not become sad if a member of your church joins another church, for Christ will give you many new members, if you spread the fullness of the word of God clearly.

In this fishing, Peter realized that Jesus is God. The night before he probably prayed, and sang hymns with his co-workers, asking God to fill their nets. But when they had taken nothing, they complained and blasphemed. But now Jesus has answered their prayers in a greater way than they had thought possible. Peter became ashamed of his unbelief, complaint and, obstinacy. He fell down at the Son of God’s knees, trembling, and confessing his sins, for the Holy Spirit uncovered his unbelief by revealing Christ as the All-Powerful, who controls the fish in the depths of the sea, and sees the secrets of hearts. Peter did not give thanks for the fish given to him, but was ashamed of his wicked heart. Does the grace of God shake your life? For he blessed you when you deserved punishment, and granted you grace when you deserved to die because of your sins.

Jesus told Peter not to be afraid, and called him to serve God, and to serve people as well. In his brokenness, Peter became prepared to enter the kingdom of God. In this way the Son of God calls you to die to your selfish interests, and turn to your fellow men to catch them, not with artifice and deception, but with humility and love, so that men may not die on the shore, but enter into the fullness of God’s power and life. In truth, every man is dead in trespasses, but whoever enters into the net of the word of God lives.

Peter and his co-workers heard Christ’s decisive call, and they were prepared in their hearts by virtue of the preaching of, John the Baptist, just at the moment of catching a lot of fish, they left all their riches, and chose the way of Christ’s poverty and persecution, to follow him, and make their fellow human beings partners in the glory of the Son of God. Christ called you to his service. Then pray, and obey all his commands.

PRAYER: O Lord, I am not worthy of the favor of your presence with me, for I am a sinful man in all my being. Thank you for your favor, for you honor me with grace for grace. You mless me and do not cast me out. Please send many to fish for men in our nation and all around the world today.

QUESTION 43: Why did Peter tremble before Christ?


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