Fishers of Men
If you possessed the cure for cancer would you keep it to yourself? The functions of the evangelist within the Body of Christ carry that same passion; as if they had the cure and everyone should know about it. Evangelists are usually social butterflies with wings fluttering about and mouths declaring the salvation of the Lord. Whether on a street corner with a bullhorn or a secluded restaurant coat closet, evangelists proclaim and declare that the cure for the human soul is Jesus Christ. Paul said, “I am not ashamed of the Gospel because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes.” (Romans 1:16) and yet some of us have left the boldness to the evangelists. Why do we keep Christ to ourselves? It’s because of fear.
Saying that “salvation is individual” with a partial understanding can be dangerous. It means that it’s personal not exclusive, but we’ve used this as an excuse not to share the Gospel with our fellow neighbors and families. Through fear of embarrassment or lack of knowing the Word of God we’ve resolved in our minds that we have to mind our own business when it comes to other people’s lives. They’ll find salvation eventually, right?
Wrong! “But how can they call on someone if they haven’t trusted in him? And how can they trust in someone if they haven’t heard about him? And how can they hear about someone if no one is proclaiming him?” (Romans 10:14) The bible makes it plain, the lost need to hear the testimonies of those who are saved and that means you’re qualified for the job.
The Bible story of the woman at the well shows us how the love of Jesus inspired an unsaved woman to receive salvation, then run to tell her whole city about it. (John 4) She was ashamed, her past had beaten her down and was very much infiltrating her present. The woman at the well had had five husbands and although this was public knowledge to everyone else, when Jesus revealed that He knew her history as well there was no judgement! At times what keeps us from evangelizing to people is the fear of being judged for our pasts. We don’t want to be hypocrites and yet it’s our very pasts
that gives testimony of the changes that took place when we received Christ in our hearts. The woman at the well ran back to a city that judged her, pitied her, and laughed at her yet, within a moment she knew she was different. How could she not share this life changing news? People need to hear our testimonies no matter what’s in our pasts. Besides, we are new creatures in Christ, nothing to be ashamed of!
Fishing was a prominent profession in biblical times and when fishermen didn’t have a good catch their livelihood would suffer tremendously. As Peter and Andrew were washing their nets Jesus says, “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” (Matthew 4:19) What’s so profound about this is that somehow their unfilled workday would find new purpose in using their skills in sharing the Gospel. We should never be too busy to share the Gospel and there should be a fulfillment we receive, unlike anything else, when we see souls give their lives to Christ. Jesus was telling them to get to work in another way; Kingdom work! Let’s cast down fear, let’s love the lost at all costs, let’s shout the cure from the rooftops! No one else is going to do it. We are fishers of men and Christ in us is the ultimate bait!