Jump Start # 2396
Luke 5:5 “And Simon answered and said, ‘Master, we worked hard all night and caught nothing, but at Your biding I will let down the nets.”
Our verse for today is powerful. Often we sit in that boat with Peter and we have to make a decision. Peter and the others were sitting at the edge of the sea. It was the end of a work day. They were washing their nets. It was time to put up the gear and go home. It hadn’t been a good day. These were not guys going fishing on the weekend. Peter was a commercial fisherman. Catching no fish meant no paycheck. It meant tough times, especially if this continued on. It had been a long night and they had nothing to show for it.
Jesus comes and tells them to cast back out into the deep and to lower their nets. There are several things concerning about this.
First, Jesus was a carpenter and a teacher. He wasn’t a fisherman. That’s Peter’s line of expertise. Peter wasn’t new at this. He understood water, fish boats and nets. Jesus understood wood. He understood how to saw, cut and put things together. Jesus could make a cabinet for you. Jesus would fix a broken chair. But the carpenter was telling the fisherman how to fish. Most odd.
Second, it was the wrong time of day to do this. Our verse tells us that they had been fishing all night. Night was over. Now it was daytime. They knew that the best fishing was done at night. Jesus wanted them to go out now. Jesus is showing that He doesn’t know much about fishing.
Third, there was no evidence that this would work. They went at the best time and got nothing. Now the carpenter was telling them to go at the wrong time. This could be a huge waste of time. They were tired. They had been at this all night. What did Jesus know?
Fourth, Jesus wanted them to cast out into the deep. Peter wasn’t fishing with poles, but with weighted nets. The deep was the wrong place to do that. They knew, but did Jesus?
However, our verse shows a great lesson. Peter says, “at your biding I will.” The KJV says, “Nevertheless.” Nevertheless I will. This shows something about Peter. He didn’t argue with Jesus. He didn’t say, “Lord, you stick to the teaching and let me do the fishing.” At the heart of all disagreements is the principle that I think I am right and you are not. If I thought you were right, then there would be no disagreement. I’m right and you’re not. This is at the center of arguments in marriage, with teens, with co-workers, and even among brethren. I think I’m right and I don’t think you are. When we disagree, we tend to dig our heels in. We talk faster and louder. We become frustrated and walk away. But we don’t find that here. Peter said, “Nevertheless, at Thy word I will let down the net.” Peter didn’t disagree. He had many reasons to, but he didn’t.
And, this is where we find ourselves sitting in the boat with Peter. We disagree with what God’s word says. We just feel that we know better. We feel that time and culture has moved on and those ancient words just don’t matter much anymore. The scientists tell us that rocks, fossils, the solar system, the ocean all point to a system of evolving mechanisms that took millions and millions of years to develop. The Bible says God created everything in six days. What does God know about science? What does God know about rocks? And, there we sit with Peter in the boat. Are we going to argue with God or will we say, Nevertheless, at Thy word, I will believe.
When truth doesn’t matter, it’s easy to make a decision. Just do whatever you feel like. Do what makes you happy. When truth is laid aside, no one is ever wrong. Everything is ok, it just a matter of how it makes you feel. Without truth, life is like playing a game with no rules. However, we find that there are rules. There are rules of the road. Ignore them, and you’ll be getting a ticket. There are rules at school. Mess those up and you are expelled. There are rules at work. We sometimes call those the policies of the company. Violate those and you’re out of a job. But when it comes to spiritual things, people want to think what God says really doesn’t matter. What God says about parenting? What God says about worship? What God says about worry? What God says about attitudes? And, here we are in the boat with Peter. We know better than He does. We know what works. God tells us to cast out into the deep and lower our nets. We are thinking, “No, that won’t work.” But Peter said, “Nevertheless, at Thy word, I will…” .
And, do you remember what happened when Peter listened to the Lord? They caught so much fish that the nets began to break. Another boat was called to help them. Both boats were filled with so many fish that they nearly sunk. And, for a professional fisherman like Peter, this was the catch of a lifetime. They had never caught this many fish before. Selling all these fish would bank roll them for months. And, what it showed Peter is that indeed Jesus knew more than he did. They caught nothing on their own. With Jesus, it was the catch of a lifetime.
And, when we are in that boat with Peter, we might just learn that Jesus does know more than we do. Jesus knows how to walk pure in this world. Jesus knows how to connect with people. Jesus know how to communicate and talk with people. Jesus knows what we need to do to be saved. Jesus knows what pleases God in worship. Jesus knows that forgiveness is always best. Jesus knows.
Nevertheless, at Thy word, I will…
Can you say that? You need to.