There is a story in the Bible about Jesus fishing and preaching. Now to look at the story and read through it we might see that Jesus is a good communicator and that He is truly God’s son because of His fishing abilities. But if we simply read the story and neglect digging deeper into the text we will miss the spiritual truths of how Obedience to Christ can bring about great power in our struggle with sin and addiction. Let’s look at the story:
Luke 5:1-11 (NLT) – 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. 2He noticed two empty boats at the water’s edge, for the fishermen had left them and were washing their nets. 3Stepping 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.
4When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Now go out where it is deeper, and let down your nets to catch some fish.”
5“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.” 6And this time their nets were so full of fish they began to tear! 7A shout for help brought their partners in the other boat, and soon both boats were filled with fish and on the verge of sinking. 8When 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.” 9For he was awestruck by the number of fish they had caught, as were the others with him. 10His 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!” 11And as soon as they landed, they left everything and followed Jesus.
Jesus is doing some public teaching and is getting pushed back by the crowd that wants to hear Him teach. He calls over to Peter (a fisherman that has been busy all night fishing) to ask for some help. Peter is busy wrapping up his evening of work, probably ready to get home and sit in his lazy-boy recliner and check out. But, he doesn’t do that. He obeys the request of the preacher (Jesus). He take Jesus out a little and then sits as Jesus teaches.
What is Peter doing while Jesus teaches? Is he listening? Is he sulking? Is he thinking, “Why did I say yes, I could be home right now taking it easy?” Is he thinking about what a failure he is because he is a professional and he didn’t catch a single fish? We don’t know what he was thinking but we can guess based on his next comments.
Jesus finishes His lesson and asks Peter to go out a little farther; “Put down your nets.” Jesus says.
Now at this point, Peter must be thinking, “Oh this is grand, I’m tired, I’m bored, and I have been on this boat too long.” He probably continues, “This guy is a good communicator but he is no fisherman; the fish don’t bite this time of day.” Peter might be thinking all those things and he says a few of them. But what he does next is extremely important.
He drops his nets and catches a huge amount of fish. Dollar signs might be floating around in his head and the heads of his fishing crew. $ $ $ $
Can you see the money he is going to make off of this haul?
Let’s look at the text one more time:
Luke 5:8 (NLT) – 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.”
Peter realized that if Jesus can look down into the depths of the sea and see where the fish are then He could look into the depths of Peter’s heart and see the sinfulness there too.
Peter simply obeys and it brings about a huge spiritual change in Peter’s life. It starts with a confession and ends with life purpose.
Struggle With Sin And Addiction
In our struggle to overcome our sinfulness and addictions in life we need to start with simple obedience to Christ and His teaching. He is right about everything pertaining to life. When we obey His teaching and follow His leadership He will bring about life. He will bring about a better life than we could ever imagine.
What is Jesus asking you to do today that you simply need to obey in?
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