From Fish to Fisherman

Sunday, Sept. 6

“Be fishers of men. You catch them; He’ll clean them.” When you get past the humor of this adage, you will acknowledge the truth of it. It is Scriptural. When Jesus called Peter and Andrew, he said “Come, follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” They left their nets and followed Him (Mt. 19-20). This is an apt analogy. Fishing is hard work. It can be lucrative and it can lead to poverty. For recreational fisherman it can be exhilarating or frustrating. In either case it takes skill and perseverance to succeed. Some fishermen are successful and others are not. If it is a sport rather than a business, it really doesn’t matter whether you catch fish or not; you’ve gotten your exercise and maybe something to brag about. If it’s your livelihood, however, it does matter. When Jesus called Peter and Andrew, it was not a sport; it was serious business. To be successful I have to learn how to lure men to Christ. A good chunk of the New Testament is a fishing manual, showing us how to fish for men. Once a man encounters Christ, his future is up for grabs. Analogies, like parables, break down when stretched too far. A fish might be eaten or thrown back into the water. But a man, when coming face to face with his maker, can choose to join the family of God or he can refuse and continue on the road to eternal destruction. For those who choose life, the reconstruction begins. The “cleaning” process is called sanctification. That’s where I am, still being cleaned up. But I also become a fisher of men. Only God can turn a fish into a fisherman.

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