Peter's Call to be a Fisher of Men: Luke 5:1-11

Peter’s Call to be a Fisher of Men
Luke 5:1-11

1. The communication before Peter’s call to be a fisher of men
1  On one occasion, while the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he was standing by the lake of Gennesaret, 2  and he saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. 3  Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, he asked him to put out a little from the land. And he sat down and taught the people from the boat. Luke 5:1-3 (ESV)

Peter and the other future disciples with him, James and John, were being exposed to kingdom principles before they would be placed with a major decision.

2. The challenge before Peter’s call to be a fisher of men
4 And when he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” 5 And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.” 6 And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. 7 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. Luke 5:4-7 (ESV)

God's commands are not always logical, practical, or convenient.

8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. 9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9 (ESV)

3. The confession at Peter’s call to be a fisher of men
8 But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” 9 For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish that they had taken, Luke 5:8-9 (ESV)

Perceiving Jesus’ power and knowledge, Peter sensed Jesus’ holiness and felt himself exposed.

MacArthur: In the terror of the recognition of his sinfulness, Peter wanted to send the Lord away, but Jesus wanted to draw Peter closer.

5  And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!” Isaiah 6:5 (ESV)

4. The commitment in Peter’s call to be a fisher of men
10 and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” 11 And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him. Luke 5:10-11 (ESV)

4 You shall walk after the LORD your God and fear him and keep his commandments and obey his voice, and you shall serve him and hold fast to him. 
Deuteronomy 13:4 (ESV)

The Greek word rendered “catch” literally means “capture alive.”

MacArthur: These men had spent their lives catching fish for the purpose of killing them; now they would spend the rest of their lives catching men to give them life.