Summary: Peter, James and John catch the biggest haul of fish they'd ever known... and then they just left their nets and boat to follow Jesus. Why would they do that?
OPEN: Albert Einstein was taking a train to an out of town engagement. The conductor stopped by to punch his ticket, but the scientist – preoccupied with his work, explained that he couldn't find his ticket. He couldn’t find it in his coat pockets, in his briefcase, anywhere!!
The conductor finally said, “We all know who you are, Dr. Einstein. I'm sure you bought ticket. Don't worry about it.”
As the conductor moved along, he looked back to see Einstein on his hands and knees he was searching under the seats for his ticket.
The conductor walked back, "Dr. Einstein, please, don't worry about it. I know who you are."
Exasperated, Einstein looked up and said, “I, too, know who I am. What I don't know is where I'm going.”
Our question for this morning is this:
Do you know WHERE you are going?
Do you have a goal in life?
Now most people have a goal of some kind in their lives
When they’re kids – the goal is to grow up, just have a good time, get through school, get a car, and maybe even go to college
When they become adults – the goal is to get a job, get married, get a house, have kids, save for retirement.
And when they get old the goal is to have enough to retire, see their grandkids, maybe travel and perhaps plan for their funeral.
But a lot of people do all that – they make all those kinds of plans for their lives - and then end up asking themselves:
“Is this all there is?
Is this all there is to live for?”
ILLUS: Charles Duke was one of only 12 men who have left footprints on the moon. As an Astronaut he was the lunar module pilot for the Apollo 16 Mission and now lives in Texas. He said:
“After walking on the moon, I was bored. Fame, fortune, a spot in the history books: I had it all. But if you had been a fly on the wall in my home, you would have seen that I wasn’t so hot. I was failing miserably as a husband and father. My business succeeded, and the money rolled in, but I was bored.”
This was a man who left footprints on the moon.
This was a man who had done something with his life.
And he continued to do so with a successful and lucrative business.
But he didn’t feel he was “going anywhere”
It seemed like his life had NO meaning!!
In my files I’ve got testimonies from celebrities and sports figures and people of prominence - people you’d THINK had it all - but deep inside they told of an emptiness. And a common question they all seemed to ask was:
“Is This All There Is?”
As I was reading our text for this morning, I began to wonder if that wasn’t what was happening with Peter, James and John.
Luke tells us that “the crowd was pressing in on (Jesus) to hear the word of God, he was standing by the lake of Gennesaret (Sea of Galilee) and he saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets.
Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, he asked him to put out a little from the land. And he sat down and taught the people from the boat.” Luke 5:1-3
For days now, Jesus has been teaching and preaching and doing miracles and healing the sick for a few days now. But up until now He doesn’t have any close followers. No REAL disciples.
But that’s going to change real quick.
Jesus says to Simon “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.”
And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.”
And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink.
But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying,
“Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” Luke 5:4-8
Now Jesus had done other miracles around Nazareth.
But not like this one… this miracle was personal.
This miracle was JUST for Peter and for his cousins James and John.
The question is this:
Why THIS miracle… and why THESE men?
It helps to know what kind of men Peter, James and John were.
They were not really impressive men.
They’re common fishermen doing a common job.
And they did the same job over and over and over, day, after day, after day.