Matthew 4:19 New King James Version (NKJV)
19 Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Whenever I read this verse, I find myself singing the word to the Seeds Family Worship tune… “Come, follow me, Jesus said, and I will make you fishers of men.”
A few weeks ago in our home group we were discussing the calling of Jesus’ first disciples. As I listened to the words again, I was struck by the specificity of the calls. In the calling of Andrew, Peter, James, John and Matthew, Jesus was talking to crowds of people, but He specifically called out to four fisherman and a tax collector. They were busy with their own work, but when He called, they immediately left what they were doing and followed Him.
He had touched their lives so deeply. Whether it was the words He spoke, they way the crowds followed Him, or the miraculous catch of fish; when He called there wasn’t a question in their hearts. They left everything and obeyed willingly.
His call came filled with promises: I will make you fishers of men. The promise that Jesus would transform them. They wouldn’t have to figure our on their own how to fish for people! The promise that He would give them a model for how to live – they would be following Him, not walking on their own. The promise of a new vocation, a life doing more than catching fish or collecting money.
But this calling and these promises weren’t just for a group of 12 men two thousand years ago, but ” for all those who will believe in me through their message” (John 17:20). Jesus calls us out of a crowd, out of our everyday busyness, to a life filled with His great and precious promises (2 Peter 1:4). When we believe in Him, we are included in Christ (Eph 1:13), included in this call, included in these promises.
I had to ask myself the question – what is my response to God’s call on my life? Am I following in His footsteps? Do I realise that He has called me, personally, to be His disciple? Am I resting on His promises for my life – promises of transformation and vocation above beyond what I can dream or imagine (Eph 3:20). This challenges me daily to deny myself and take up my cross (Matt 16:24-26), knowing that I step into these promises that God has for my life.
These promises are for you, too! Will you answer?