If at First You Don’t Succeed, Wait on the Lord

Luke 5:1 – 11

One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.

When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners. Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

1)     Jesus Initiated the Relationship with Simon   (v. 1-3)

  • Why did Jesus choose Simon out of the multitude?
  • Why did God choose me? A reasonable question.

For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will – to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. (Ephesians 1:4–6)

2)     Jesus Tells Simon to Get Back to Work (v. 4-5)

  • Jesus is not a fisherman.
  • Simon is a professional – and he is tired – and he has just had an unprofitable day.
  • Simon agrees to do what Jesus asks.

3)     The Miraculous Catch (v. 6-7)

  • When you hear from the Lord – do what he says.
  • Simon caught fish – not because he was a great fisherman but because of his obedience and Jesus’ power.

4)     Simon, James and John began to recognize Jesus for who he is. (v. 8-9)

  • Do you see the difference between Simon’s response to Jesus’ miracle and the multitude’s response?
  • Simon falls at Jesus’ knees and says “Depart from me Lord; I am a sinful man.” Worship.
  • The multitude “presses around him.

5)     Jesus calls Simon (v. 10-11)

  • Jesus tells Simon, “from now on you will be fishing for people.”
  • This is why Jesus called the disciples.
  • This is why he called you, if he has called you.
  • What should be our response to Jesus’ calling?

Peter, James and John left their newly found wealth, their boats, their nets, everything – and followed Him.  How’s the fishing going?  Are you catching anything?