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Fishing for Men

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To demonstrate the influence Christians should make on this world Jesus used two common illustrations of salt and light. G. Campbell Morgan once said “The world needs salt because it is corrupt and it needs light because it is dark. We are God’s salt to retard corruption and … More

Light

The ultimate purpose for following Jesus is to become fishers of men. God loves people, and He wants us to draw as many as we can to Him; it is not His will that any should perish. But how will He make us effective fishermen? The answer is found in an understanding of fishing methods of Christ’s day. Peter and Nathaniel were fishing with nets during the day. That is when Jesus called them. However, James and John were mending their nets, indicating that they fished at night, which can be far more effective. God’s way to fish is to attract people with Christ’s light in us and then draw them in with nets of love. It is for the purpose of drawing people to Christ that Jesus said, “Ye are the light of the world” (v. 14) and Paul wrote, “ walk as children of light” (Eph. 5:8).

The intensity of the brightness of our light is directly proportional to our meditation day and night, because Scripture itself is light. When it becomes a living part of our lives, we increase our brightness. “The entrance of thy words giveth light” (Psalm 119:130) and “...it giveth light unto all that are in the house” (v. 15). It is especially significant that God relates His commandments to the function of light: “The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes” (Psalm 19:8). At night, the fishermen in Jesus’ day suspended lamps out from the boat and attracted fish to the light. Scripture states that the word of God is a “lamp” and a “light” (Psalm 119:105). Let’s turn up our light by intensifying our meditation day and night! Jesus said that He had come to fulfill the law (v. 17).  Where the law had degenerated into legalism by the Pharisees, Jesus now takes the law beyond mere outward observance and shows the real inner spiritual intention of God.

Application

Is my light bright enough to attract others to Christ, and do I have enough love to draw them in?

Matthew 5:13-20 (English Standard Version)

"You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet. "You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven."

View this passage in NIV (Bible Gateway) »

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