Summary: To "fish for men" we must be willing to follow in the footsteps of Christ Jesus.
A Fish Story – Mark 1: 14 – 20
Intro: As a boy I went fishing with my dad and grandfather. I wasn’t a very good fisherman because you had to be quiet and that has never been easy for me. --- The story is told that Mark Twain loved to fish; but, he hated to catch fish. He went fishing to relax. --- doing nothing people would say he was lazy. Fishing – “Don’t bother him, he’s fishing.” (catching fish was a both – bait hook, reel fish in, take off fish, bait the hook) So Mark put his line in the water without a hook, laid back on the bank and relaxed without being bothered by fish or humanity. (Don’t Sit On Your Grace by Scott Terrell, SermonCentral.com)
I. The gospel lesson today is another fish story. VS. 16. “As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen.”
A. Ignorant, unlearned fishermen were called by Jesus. They might have thought of themselves as inferior or not good enough.
B. Inferior people used by God: Noah had never built an ark, Moses stuttered, David was a shepherd, Nehemiah was a cupbearer, Amos was a shepherd and the list goes on.
C. No matter who we are or what our background, God can use us. God is bigger than our circumstances. / God calls us into what we know the least about because then we have to rely on God to get it done.
II. Why did Jesus call these ignorant fishermen? VS. 15 – “The time has come,” Jesus said. “The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!”
A. VS. 17 – “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” Notice, it is not a question! It’s not, “will you come and follow me?” It is a command, COME, FOLLOW ME.
B. The call of God is always a call to obedience. ---- It’s time for a change: of career, of life-style, or focus.
C. When is the last time you honestly asked God to reveal His will for your life? When was the last time you obediently followed God’s desire and direction? What have been the consequences of doing things your way instead of God’s way?
III. A lot of Christians today are like Mark Twain. They have their pole in the water, but there is no look on the end.
A. VS. 18 – “At once, they left their nets and followed him.” No questions, doubts or hesitations.
B. A group of people stood before Notre Dame Cathedral admiring the artistry and craftsmanship, the detail work, the care and love that went into its building. “Why don’t we build like this today?” --- They had convictions; we have opinions.”
C. The convictions, integrity and desire to please God is missing today. A lot of people only believe in God when it is convenient, when there is nothing better to do. There is little incentive to give one’s all, one’s whole self, one’s whole life to God. Christ Jesus speaks to us even today saying “Follow me.”
Conclu: There was a field covered in freshly fallen snow. As the father walked across the field he paid little attention to where he was going. The son, however, following directly behind his father took special care to step only in his father’s footprints. There was only one set of tracks visible. The Christian life should be that way. In our daily walk, we should be following in the footsteps of Christ.