No Doubt – Not A Theologian

When Jesus had finished speaking, he told Simon, “Row the boat out into the deep water and let your nets down to catch some fish.”

5 “Master,” Simon answered, “we have worked hard all night long and have not caught a thing. But if you tell me to, I will let the nets down.”6 They did it and caught so many fish that their nets began ripping apart. 7 Then they signaled for their partners in the other boat to come and help them. The men came, and together they filled the two boats so full that they both began to sink.

8 When Simon Peter saw this happen, he knelt down in front of Jesus and said, “Lord, don’t come near me! I am a sinner.” 9 Peter and everyone with him were completely surprised at all the fish they had caught.      Luke 5:4-9 (CEV)

My husband and I are Christian book publishers. We have over 85 books in our catalog now. Of those books, there are only three books that I totally agree with. They are the ones that I have personally written. (My tongue was in my cheek on that statement.) My husband has worked very hard to communicate the mission statement of our publishing company and how we prayerfully decide what to publish and what not to publish. He just wrote another blog yesterday related to this entitled, My Personal Views and Energion Publications. There are doctrinal subjects (creation vs evolution and homosexuality to name only a few) that just seem to push buttons and make otherwise kind, reasonable Christians erupt into unreasonable, I’ve-got-to-convince-you people. What has all this to do with Luke’s telling of Jesus calling His first disciples? It came to my mind because I was also told yesterday that a theologian, Karl Barth, says that all Christians are theologians by definition. Well, I disagree. I am no theologian!

Jesus has selected some fishermen out of all the people He may have passed by on this particular day. He didn’t select people who were great students of the Torah or priests from the Temple but just a bunch of guys. He then proceeds to speak to them in words and in a scenario that they might at least have a beginning point of understanding.

Jesus takes the fishermen out and asks them to fish at a time of day that is usually not the most productive time. He also asks them to do this when they are tired and unhappy about their lack of success. And when they brought the huge catch into the boat, they did not attempt to do it alone. They called for help from other fishermen. And then Simon, not yet Peter the Rock, probably says the first totally true statement to come out of his lips from his heart, “I am a sinner, LORD. Don’t come near me.”

I am a sinner in need of a savior, and Jesus Christ called me out and in His power saved me and made me a fisherman, not a theologian. No where in the gospel does Jesus say He needs defending. No where in the gospel does Jesus say, “I will make you great theologians.” And He did not say in Matthew 28 that I should “Go and make theologians.” but instead He says I should make disciples, teaching them to obey what He has commanded me. It is not just about all the words that I say but the fruit of what my life is in Him.

The first disciples were fishermen, tax collectors, tradesmen and women who saw their sin and humbly followed the Savior. They didn’t see Him all the same. They didn’t share Him with all the same people and in all the same way. What they had in common was Jesus. What they could all agree upon was Jesus.

Give Me Jesus written by Fernando Ortega and sung by Vince Gill

 

 

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