Summary: If you love Jesus... 1. Take a close walk with the Lord. 2. Find the right work for the Lord. 3. Surrender your wants to the Lord.
Do You Love Jesus?
Sermon by Rick Crandall
McClendon Baptist Church - Feb. 10, 2008
*Do you love me? I suppose everybody has asked -- or at least thought about that question sometime in their life. Jesus asked Peter and He is asking us today, “Do you love me?”
*Of course we have every reason to love Jesus. He has blessed us beyond measure! And 1 John 4:19 says, “We love Him” (or at least we should) “because He first loved us.” We see Christ’s love for us all over the New Testament. As Curtis Schofield once said:
-I see Jesus take up little children in his arms and bless them.
-I see Jesus stopping a parade to respond to the cries of a blind street beggar.
-I see Jesus going home with Zacchaeus, a hated tax collector, to demonstrate to him that God still loved him.
-I see Jesus responding to the hunger needs of 5,000 people by directing his disciples to feed them.
-I see Jesus talking to a woman with a bad reputation at the well. Through faith in God, Jesus helps the woman to find a new life.
-I see Jesus coming to the rescue of a woman who was about to be stoned. Jesus instructed the crowd, "Let him who is without sin cast the first stone."
-I see Jesus breaking a loaf of bread, just before he goes to the Cross, saying, "This is my body which is broken for you." -Later the disciples realize that Jesus was telling them that He was God’s sacrifice of love for their sins.
-When I think of the Cross I remember the words of Paul, "God took the sinless Christ and poured into Him our sins. Then, in exchange, he poured God’s goodness into us." (2 Cor 5:21)
-To the Christians at Rome, Paul wrote, "God shows his love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us." (Rom 5:8) (1)
1. We should love Jesus, because He first loved us, but how can we show it? First, take a close walk with the Lord.
*He’s not far away, you know. By His Holy Spirit, Jesus is here with us right now. In Matt 18:20 Jesus said, “Where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” Jesus Christ is right here today. -- But in our hearts, we have to draw close to Him. That’s why James 4:8 says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. . .” Will you do it? Take a close walk with the Lord.
*Get close enough to receive the success God wants to give you. In vs. 3 these seven disciples went fishing, but they caught nothing. Most of them were professional fishermen, but they caught nothing. The good news in vs. 4-6 is that Jesus was close by:
4. When the morning had now come, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus.
5. Then Jesus said to them, "Children, have you any food?’’ They answered Him, "No.’’
6. And He said to them, "Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.’’ So they cast, and now they were not able to draw it in because of the multitude of fish.
*Darren Rogers says, “The Lord knew where the fish were. They had confessed their failure and it was time for Jesus to take over the situation. He told them where to cast the net; they obeyed, and they caught a multitude of fish. The difference between success and failure was the width of a ship! We are never far from success when we let Jesus give the orders. We are usually closer to success than we think.” Jesus knows where the blessings are for your life. -- But are you close enough to listen? (2)
*Get close enough to receive the success God wants to give you, and close enough to know that He is the Risen Savior. Through that miraculous catch, John realized that the man on the shore was Jesus, so in vs. 7 John told Peter, “‘It is the Lord!’ Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his outer garment (for he had removed it), and plunged into the sea.”
*Peter was eager to get to Jesus! Don’t you like that. Vs. 8 tells us that he swam 200 cubits. -- that’s 300 feet! -- the length of a football field. Peter was eager to get to Risen Savior. And the more we realize who Jesus is, the closer we will want to be. Be eager!
*Get close enough to know that He is the Risen Savior. And close enough to know that He can provide everything you will ever need. In vs. 9, “As soon as they had come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid on it, and bread.” The Lord of all the universe was cooking breakfast for His friends. Amazing! Jesus already had everything they needed when they got to shore: the bread, the fire, the fish. Then in vs. 10, “Jesus said to them, ‘Bring some of the fish which you have just caught.’” But of course the only reason they had anything to give was because the Lord had filled their net. Jesus met all their needs and He will meet yours too!