Following Jesus is a life-changing, lifelong adventure, exemplified by our willingness to let Jesus make us into the followers he wants us to be. The two fishermen he called sacrificed their old way of life, in order to follow him on a new adventure to fish for people. Fishing for people was not even comparable to fishing for fish, but these fishermen allowed Jesus to give them a complete makeover for a different kind of activity in their lives.
Fishing for people was a new paradigm that was deeply rooted in active evangelism and in the willingness to move beyond the normal routine of their lives to become “soul-winning” disciples for Christ in a difficult religious and social context. The model is still the same for us today, as we seek to follow Jesus in response to his call to Christian discipleship.
Engaging in active evangelism is a wonderful way to reach people for Christ. In our willingness to follow him faithfully, he through the Spirit can mold us into the kind of fishing persons he wants us to be in our time and age.
Active evangelism should perhaps be our main focus at a time like this, that new people can hear the Good News of salvation and be drawn to Jesus and the church.
Obviously in our world of modern technology the meth-odology of going fishing for people is much different than in Jesus’ time, but reaching new people with the Gospel is an absolute necessity. Hopefully, we will allow Jesus to make us into true fishers, that we can go fishing with him for new people as we faithfully follow him in today’s world.
Charles C. Harewood, pastor, First Moravian Church, New York, New York
Third Sunday after the Epiphany
January 25, 2015