Week One - Day One
Following Jesus is more than mental assent
Luke 5:1-11 - 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, and he saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. 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. And when he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.” And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. 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. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish that they had taken, and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him.
Peter, James, and John were fishermen on the Sea of Galilee (also known as the lake of Gennesaret). They weren’t particularly notable men until they met Jesus. These men had heard about Jesus before this day recorded in Luke 5. In the chapter prior, we know that Jesus had been healing the sick, preaching in the synagogues, and teaching crowds of people. Jesus already had a crowd following him now and Simon was willing to let him use his boat from which to teach. They were even willing to obey his command to throw out the nets again. At the amazing catch of the fish, the Scripture says the men “were astonished.” Peter’s response to seeing a glimpse of the power of God was extreme humility and borderline terror. Jesus reassures him, “Do not be afraid” and then calls Peter to a new life of following him. Walking away from their work and community may not have been an easy decision; these men could not help themselves but to leave everything and follow Jesus.
• How have you seen the greatness of God in a way that causes you to leave everything and follow Jesus?
• What does leaving everything and following him look like practically?
• As the Lord brings these things to mind, pray and ask him for the strength to take the next step in your faith. Write down your thoughts and share them with a person from your family or Discipleship Group so they can be praying, also.