Monday, February 4, 2019
Luke 5:4-8, 10b: And when He [Jesus] had finished speaking, He said to Simon, "Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch." And Simon answered, "Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at Your word I will let down the nets." And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down and Jesus' knees, saying, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord." ... And Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid. From now on you will be catching men."
Have you ever doubted somebody because of what he or she said to you? Of course. It happens all the time. For example, a friend will say to you, "The Patriots are going to win the Super Bowl." Your answer is also immediate saying, "No way. They're getting way to old. LA's younger and hungrier." Then, guess what? New England wins the Super Bowl, again.
What is your first reaction? To go your friend and basically say, "I'm sorry that I doubted you."
The scenario is similar. Simon Peter, who had just finished fishing and came back with nothing, hears Jesus say, "Head out. Let's go fishing." Peter's answer was, "The fish aren't biting. We tried all night long." Peter is in effect saying, "Jesus, you don't know what you're asking. Do you know these waters? Have you ever once been out on a boat? No. You're a carpenter. Stick to wood working please."
And Yet... Peter knew something. He couldn't put his finger on it. He believed, to a point, and trusted that Jesus was going to do something. That is why Peter replied to Jesus' request the way he did. AND I'M SURE, there was a twinge of sarcasm in his voice.
Lo and behold, Peter caught so much fish that he need James and John's boat to bring in the catch. Peter realized his doubt, confessed his sin of doubting Jesus through words and falling on his knees, a show of humility, confession, and adoration of Jesus.
Do we doubt? Do we wonder if all of what Jesus says and did is true? Sure we do. At the same time, we believe and trust. So what wins the day? Jesus' words to Peter, AND TO US, do. "Don't be afraid." Jesus says. Let go of the fear that drives the doubt and le the faith and trust in Jesus guide your day.
And in the end, you will be fishing for men, too.
Pastor Robert Hemsath joined Faith Lutheran Church and School as the Senior Pastor in January 2017. Pastor Hemsath comes to FLC from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Waxahachie, TX. He has also served congregations in Aberdeen, ID and Pocatello, ID. He has been a Lutheran pastor for the past 20 years.