Summary: Fish are not checking out the potential beauty of the bottom of the boat and deciding by this measure by whom they would prefer to be caught. They are drawn in by what is on the hook?

Title: “Fish don’t look at the Bottom of the Boat.”


Jesus told his disciples that if they would follow him, than he would make of them “Fishers of Men.” In this text, Jesus is on a fishing expedition. You might find the title of this message a bit strange, so let me do my best to explain it to you. If you are going to fish, you have to go to where the fish are. That is why Jesus said, “I must needs go to Samaria.”

In this “fishing story”, Jesus is by himself, wearied with the journey, and sitting beside by a well. He is not a pumped up Jesus. He is a tired and worn out Jesus. Certainly he must not have looked like an impressive sight. Why then, was the woman of Samaria drawn to him? He did not perform a razzel dazzle miracle, and yet it would be revealed to her that he was the Christ.

Let me say it in another way, Jesus was not preaching a fine sermon dressed in his Sunday best clothing, standing at the Temple steps, surrounded by adoring disciples and being listened to by the thronging multitudes. There was no cathedral choir singing, and no crippled man being healed and leaping and jumping around in praise. And yet, this Samaritan woman would come to believe that he was the Christ.

In recent days, my wife Judy and I have been visiting many of our Churches in the Muskegon area. There have been special invitations for us to attend various functions throughout the community. I could not help but to impressed by the various buildings of worship. These church edifices were simply magnificent. Although our Church building is nice, compared to the other church buildings are out there, it would be like comparing ourselves from a yacht to a row boat. Our Church building being the row boat! So, should I quit fishing because I don’t have the best boat in town?

As I studied the text again, I thought of fishing. As far as I know, fish are not checking out the potential beauty of the bottom of the boat and deciding by this measure by whom they would prefer to be caught. They are drawn in by what is on the hook? And not by “how big is the bottom of your boat!” They are studying the beauty of the lure.

If the beauty of Christ can be seen in me in the public place, the people who are in need of Christ will be drawn. I have never yet been told by someone who I have led to Christ, “tell me how big your church is, and perhaps I just might make a visit.”

In some ways people are like fish. They are not concerned about whether they are being caught by a red plastic row boat or by a huge floating yacht. Whatever fisherman has the fish on the line, that fisherman will catch the fish!

Let me share with you five helpful points found in this text that will help you to become a better fisher of men.

1. Christ saw the need as a must.

Are you always excited about sharing your faith with others? I do not believe that Jesus was particularly thrilled with making the journey to Samaria, but he did it. Why? Because he said that he must needs go to Samaria. Christian maturity does what is the right thing to do no matter how much they would rather not. Jesus was wearied with the journey, and yet still, he went. Fishing for men is a must. We must learn to leave the comfortable harboring four walls of our Church and launch out into the deep and win the lost to Christ. Remember that the Jews had no dealings with the Samaritans, that is until Christ came along!

2. What was the need of the woman?

She had been married and divorced five times. She was living with a man that would not make of her his wife. What was her need? The woman of Samaria needed a hero. She needed someone who would love her. She needed someone who would care of her. She was lonely. She needed Christ.

3. What was the need of Christ?

It may not seem right, but I am going to say it anyway, Jesus seems lonely in this text? Have you thought that Christ needed friendship? After God made Adam in his image, he said of Adam, “It is not good for him to dwell alone.” Could it be that God himself desires our fellowship? What was the need of Christ? Christ needed to be a hero!

4. How did Christ meet the need of the Samaritan woman?

He would give her the water of life where she would never thirst again! He would provide for her forgiveness from a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emanuel’s veins. She would come to know Christ and to believe in Christ as her Messiah.

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