THE NETS
"And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret, And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets. And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon's, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship. Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink."
  This story found in Luke 5;1-7 happened near the beginning of Jesus ministry when the disciples were first called. The story is pretty self explanatory so i will only point out a few things. First notice that it is Peter who seems to be spokesman for the group. Peter seemed to have the type of personality to do and be that and notice that even though Peter had some obvious faults Jesus didn't fight his personality or try to make him change his personality. Later in Luke 22;31,32 Jesus would say  "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:  But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. God doesn't change people's personality, He refines it, sometimes even using the devil to do it.
  The main thing i want to point out today is that Jesus said let down the netS and Peter let down the net and that net broke. Sounds like the way i sometimes obey God, when He says nets i believe net and who knows what the result might have been if i had believed nets! Now i'm sure none of you do that so i will ask you to pray for me and move on. In Mark 1;16-20 the following happened  "Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.  And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men. And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him. And when he had gone a little further thence, he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets. And straightway he called them: and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him."  While this may not be the same occasion, notice that they didn't hesitate but left family, friends and livelihood to follow Jesus. This was not the first time they had met Jesus however. According to the account in John 1 these disciples met Jesus at the Jordan where John Baptist was baptizing and according to the account in Mark 1 John Baptist was in jail when this occurred. Whatever happened between the two, when Jesus called, they responded.  
 Finally lets go to John chapter 21 where we find them fishing again.    3.  "Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing. But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. Then Jesus saith unto them, Children, have ye any meat? They answered him, No. And he said unto them, Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes. Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea. And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were not far from land, but as it were two hundred cubits,) dragging the net with fishes. As soon then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread. Jesus saith unto them, Bring of the fish which ye have now caught. Simon Peter went up, and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three: and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken."
 There are many points to bring out in this particular story but in the interest of keeping your interest i'll only point out that AFTER the resurrection the net didn't break.

 Well that's week #2 of the bible study, if you are getting anything out of it feel free to pass it on. If you have any suggestions or know somebody that would like to contribute a study, send me an e-mail at atheophilus@netzero.net . Until next week the Lord bless you and keep you and cause His face to shine upon you.
3/19/01
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