Summary: Beginning of a series looking at twelve followers of Jesus, their imperfections, and their victories. This sermon looks at the life of Simon Peter.
Today we begin a series I have entitled “The Dirty Dozen.” Jesus was always being accused of attracting the worst kind of people. In fact, He said He came to deliver these folks. I thought it might be interesting to examine twelve of these people and discover if perhaps we have some of these traits inside of ourselves. We can also discover how Jesus will still walk with us in our imperfection.
Let us begin by reading John 15:15. “I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.”
Jesus desires to confide in his friends. That’s me and you. He desires to inform us of his plans for our lives. He desires for us to join him in ministry. He actually desires to serve you by helping you through life. As the old song says “What a friend we have in Jesus.” Today we will meet his best friend while He walked the earth. We will possibly see some of our traits in his life.
THE MEETING- John 1:41-42 “Andrew went to find his brother, Simon, and told him ‘We have found the Messiah’ (which means ‘Christ’). Then Andrew brought Simon to meet Jesus. Looking intently at Simon, Jesus said, ‘Your name is Simon, son of John—but you will be called Cephas’ (which means ‘Peter’).”
Jesus saw something in this man called Simon. He looked deep within him. He gazed at him. Then I think a smile begin to form on the lips of Jesus. Jesus said to him “Right now you are Simon but the day will come when you will be my rock.”
Do you feel Jesus gazing at you? He is. He is saying to you “Right now you are who you are but one day you will be what I want you to be.” Simon had no idea what Jesus was saying. He probably thought Andrew was a bit gullible. But Jesus would change his mind.
Luke 5:1-7 “One day as Jesus was preaching on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, great crowds pressed in on him to listen to the word of God. He noticed two empty boats at the water’s edge, for the fishermen had left them and were washing their nets. Stepping into one of the boats, Jesus asked Simon, its owner, to push it out into the water. So he sat in the boat and taught the crowds from there. When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, ‘Now go out where it is deeper, and let down your nets to catch some fish.’ ‘Master,’ Simon replied, ‘we worked hard all last night and didn’t catch a thing. But if you say so, I’ll let the nets down again.’ And this time their nets were so full of fish they began to tear! A shout for help brought their partners in the other boat, and soon both boats were filled with fish and on the verge of sinking.”
Luke 5:8-11 “When Simon Peter realized what had happened, he fell to his knees before Jesus and said, ‘Oh, Lord, please leave me—I’m too much of a sinner to be around you.’ For he was awestruck by the number of fish they had caught, as were the others with him. His partners, James and John, the sons of Zebedee, were also amazed. Jesus replied to Simon, ‘Don’t be afraid! From now on you’ll be fishing for people!’ And as soon as they landed, they left everything and followed Jesus.”
Did you notice that when we took the boat out he was Simon? However when he returned he was Simon Peter. He began to realize that Jesus had impacted his life and things would never be the same. He left everything the world had to offer to follow Jesus.
Mark 3:13-15 “Afterward Jesus went up on a mountain and called out the ones he wanted to go with him. And they came to him. Then he appointed twelve of them and called them his apostles. They were to accompany him, and he would send them out to preach, giving them authority to cast out demons.”
Mark 3:16 “These are the twelve he chose: Simon (whom he named Peter),”
Simon Peter was first on the list. Not only first among the twelve but first among all the ones Jesus had called out to go with him. As we will see there were two others that were part of an inner circle but Simon Peter was definantly the first choice of Jesus. I think that is a pretty good argument for best friend status.
That best friend status got him the door to see a miracle. Jesus was addressing a situation with a woman. He had been interrupted on his way to the house of a synagogue leader whose daughter was dying.