Summary: A series from the lives of Jesus’ disciples and a look at how they changed the world. This sermon deals with answering Jesus’ call on our lives.
Be a World Changer I
Introduction: This begins a 3 sermon series on “How to Change the World.” We will explore how you can change world for the next 3 weeks.
This was not the first time Jesus met these men. They had been followers of John the Baptist and had almost certainly met and spoken with Jesus before.
I. The Call
A. Jesus called fishermen, not Pharisees.
ILLUS p. 800 – It is observable that God has often called men to places of dignity and honor when they have busy and honest employment of their vocation. Saul was seeking his father’s donkeys and David his father’s sheep when called to the Kingdom. The shepherds were feeding their flocks when they had their glorious revelation. God called the 4 apostles from their fishing and Matthew from collecting taxes. Amos from the horsemen of Tecoah, Moses from keeping Jethro’s sheep, Gideon from the threshing floor, Elisha from the plows. God never called a lazy man. God never encourages idleness and will not despise persons in the lowest employment. D.L. Moody
B. Qualities of fishermen:
2. Perserverance – not easily discouraged, always ready to try again – success in fishing means landing the fish. You can’t stop part-way - “Almost” doesn’t count. –
ILLUS – Spurgeon – “By perserverance the snail reached the ark.”
3. Courageous – must stand up for God despite hostility –
“The duty we owe to God is higher than the danger we fear from men.” 18th century preacher.
a. Illegal to be prejudiced against anyone in America except Chrisitians.
4. Eye for the right moment – know when to speak, when to listen, and when to le ave.
4. Must fit the bait to the fish –
ILLUS – Ben fishing for sharks with nightcrawlers. – different approaches work with different people.
5. Must stay out of sight – (out of the way) – that we may not obstruct the person’s view of the Savior
C. The command “Follow me” is not a request or an offer – it requires a decision.
1. This was a one-time challenge for a commitment to be with Jesus.
D. Jesus never minced words – He spoke plainly with the truth.
1. Christ wins with only His word.
2. Ultimately, we must take Christ at His word.
3. Lunatic, Liar, or Lord – we must choose one of the three. Christ leaves us no other options! –
ILLUS – p. 482 - C.S. Lewis – “A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said wouldn’t be a great moral, teacher. He would either be a lunatic on the level with a man who says he’s a poached egg – or else he would be the devil of hell; you must take your choice. Either this was, and is, the Son of God, else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a demon, or can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But don’t come up with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great moral teacher. He hasn’t left that alternative open to us. He did not intend to.”
II. The Response
A. The response was immediate
B. They left their father – Matthew 10:37 – “Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me.”
1. They didn’t abandon their father, just the family business. He had hired hands to help him.
2. They left their nets
3. Nothing can stand between you and God.
C. We must leave everything behind to follow Christ.
1. We become new people in Him.
2. To “follow” is a process – it is ongoing – you can’t do it part-time.
III. The Reward
A. First command is the most important – “Come, follow me”
1. The reward follows obedience.
B. Their greatness was not in their ability, but in their availability. –
ILLUS p. 800 – A man wanted to join a church, but told the pastor he didn’t have any time to work at visitation, teaching, singing, or other ministries because he was too busy. The pastor sent him to a church down the road – that was all boarded up, dead from lack of workers.
C. Jesus can to anything with people who offer Him nothing but themselves.
Conclusion: “Am I in Christ?” – “Am I in my calling?”