Preaching & Teaching

How Jesus Makes Us “Fishers of Men”

“I will make you fishers of men.” Matthew 4:19 (NIV)

Remember who is saying this. Read the Gospels and look at how Jesus connects with people from every background, speaking truth in a clear and compelling way. Christ is the Master fisherman and He says, “I will make you fishers of men.”

Notice that there is a specific work of Christ here. It’s not “Follow me and you will become fishers of men.” It’s “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” How does Jesus do this work in our lives?

1. He gives skill to the fishermen.
Christ gave these men gifts that they did not have before they followed Him. They were the most unlikely candidates for success in this work: They were not educated men. Andrew was shy—he hardly says anything in the Gospels. James and John were nicknamed Boanerges—“sons of thunder”—which must mean they had fiery tempers. Peter was impulsive. But Christ changed these men as they walked with Him.

2. He draws fish into the net.
The disciples had been out all night and they caught no fish. When Jesus tells them to throw out the nets, Peter says, “Because you say so, I will let down the nets.” And they caught so many fish that their nets began to break (Luke 5:5-6). Jesus brought the fish into the net.

Jesus is the Son of God. He could make the fish jump into the boat if He wanted to. But He doesn’t do that. Christ draws fish into the gospel net that we throw out.

Are you looking more to yourself and what you can become? Or to Jesus and what He will make of you?

Colin Smith is senior pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church, a multi-campus church located in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, and president of Unlocking the...

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