Summary: A biographical sketch of Andrew
John 1:35-42; 6:5-9, 11-13; 12:20-22
March 21, 2004
Before I begin to talk about Andrew today, let me tell you that I was with your women folk for the first half of their retreat and they are, indeed, having a mountain-top experience which is Christian talk for beyond a great time! It’s always hard to come back to reality after a retreat and so I feel a responsibility to my sisters in Christ to tell you, the children and men folk left behind, the Top Ten Ways NOT to Welcome Your Loved One Home from a Women’s Retreat:
10. Do not greet your wife at the door with the remote in one hand and the kids in the other and say, “Thank God you’re home. Here take the kids, the game is starting.”
9. Do not greet your wife at the door with a grocery list in one hand and the kids in the other and say, “Thank God you’re home. Here:.the kids need to get out of the house and we’re out of food.”
8. Do not greet your wife at the door with the kids in one hand and the laundry basket in the other and say, “Thank God you’re home. We’re still in our pajamas because we ran out of clean clothes.
7. Do not greet your wife at the door with the kids in one hand and golf clubs, a tennis racket, a basketball, a fishing pole, a lacrosse stick or any number of other assorted sports implements and say anything that even implies you are going to leave the house to catch a quick game of whatever.
6. If you have young children, do not meet your wife at the door with the words, “Thank God you’re home. We were in the emergency room all night.”
5. If you have older children, do not meet your wife at the door with the words, “Thank God you’re home. Newark PD just left.”
4. Do not greet your wife at the door and say, “Thank God you’re home. Cousin Orville and Aunt Myrtle are here for dinner.”
3. If you undertook a home improvement project while your wife was away, do not greet her at the door and hand her the kids and a broom.
2. Do not greet your wife at the door and say any of the following: “Surprise! I took all the wallpaper off in the dining room” Or “Hey! I hope you like the color I painted the kitchen!”
1. If that home improvement project went awry, do not meet her at the door hand her the kids and say, “Thank God you’re home. Who is our plumber, electrician, roofer, etc.
So gentlemen. You have been warned! Now, what you may ask, does all that have to do with Andrew, our sermon topic for the day? The answer is, regretfully, not very much. I had a pastor friend of mine read my sermon to make sure it was Biblically sound and she suggested I needed a better opening! The top ten was all I could think of!
Actually, we know very little about Andrew. We don’t even know if he was married, let alone how he would greet his wife at the door. We do know that his brother Peter was married because Jesus healed his mother-in-law, and we know that Andrew lived in the same house. But whether he lived there with his family, too, or had joined Peter’s family as a sort of bachelor uncle is unclear.
Andrew in many ways was a pretty ordinary fellow. We read in John’s gospel that Andrew and Peter were originally from Bethsaida, a small town probably in northern Galilee. We know that at some point they moved to Capernaum, a nearby larger city, located by the Sea of Galilee at the junction of several trade routes. That’s where the two brothers shared a house and a fishing business.
It’s possible that Andrew and Peter were lifelong friends of the disciples James and John. At the very least they knew each other when they were grown and all fishing in the same sea. They four of them were also spiritual seekers, even before they met Christ.
Now it’s always interesting to read about brothers in the Bible and the Book, in fact, gives us lots of not-so-good examples. Who among us would want our sons to turn out like Cain and Able and Jacob and Esau? Even James and John have that annoying habit of seeking glory for themselves and arguing about where they will sit in heaven.
In contrast, Andrew and Peter seem perfectly suited for each other. At least the quiet and unpretentious Andrew seems the perfect brother for the strong-willed, dominating and some times blustery Peter. I think Andrew genuinely loved his outrageous older brother—after all after Andrew met Christ, the first thing he did was to run and get Peter and lead him to Jesus.