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Lesson # Mark 1:16-20
Study Material - Mark 1:16-20
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
16 And as He was going along by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew, the brother of Simon, casting a net in the sea; for they were fishermen. 17 And Jesus said to them, 'Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.' 18 And they immediately left the nets and followed Him. 19 And going on a little farther, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who were also in the boat mending the nets. 20 And immediately He called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went away to follow Him.
In the course of His ministry, Jesus Christ was walking along the waters edge, but not by chance. Four men whom He had seen but a year earlier, and whom had been with him for a short while during that time when John the Baptist was preaching along the Jordan. Now He calls them into service. Jesus is God, but in Mark, He is portrayed as man which He is as well. The unique person of the universe, both God and man in the same person, in what theology often calls the hypostatic union. A unique joining of both God and man in the same person. Not a temporary joining either, but a permanent one.
Simon who will later be called Peter, the rock, and Andrew. Then there is James and John, the sons of Zebedee. The sons of 'thunder'. Certainly Zebedee was not a passive and meek man, but probably carried a commanding voice as well as an attitude to match. Running a crew on a fishing boat require or employees who mend nets for others, requires authority and presence in order to get the jobs done and done right. So from this environment, both James and John left their family.
Andrew carries the connotation of manly, mighty, conqueror. While Simon means obedient, harkening, listening. John means grace, and James means heal as in the heel of a foot and similar to Jacob, to hold the heel. James was possibly the older of the two brothers and therefore named first, but he was not the lessor. James will be the first recorded Apostle to be martyred.
Now Jesus has selected six of His apostles. Philip and Nathanael having been called over a year earlier and apparently have remained with Jesus all of this time.
These four did not hesitate when called. James was not mentioned in the passages dates from the earlier time when Philip, Nathanael, Simon and Andrew, and probably John, were in the Jordan region visiting John the Baptist. Perhaps James did not make the trip, but he certainly listened to the report John, or Peter made when they returned. So much so that he did not hesitate when called, even though he had not yet seen Jesus in person.
Though three of these have seen Jesus, all of them have heard of His reputation and miracles. Just as much of the general public has heard the stories that have been passed along by folks near and far. James has heard but not seen, and did not require further proof as Nathanael did from the first chapter of John.
So this is where all of us reside. We have heard and none of us have seen Jesus Christ. Our faith is limited to the written word, and on that we build our faith to the point of maturity. Certainly there are many arguments in this world as to why we could ignore the Bible and write it off as just another philosophy in the world, or a story book for kids. We can certainly find excuses for not reading or listening to the Bible, and skipping Bible study as an unnecessary bother in our busy daily lives.
But here are four men who had vocations. Two certainly with family, and content with their family functions. But Christ came to them with such authority and presence, that they could not resist the power of His pulling them to Him. And so it is with those who are positive to Bible doctrine. Though we read some of the same words in Matthew or other passages, we still glean more information from one reading to the next.
Jesus told them that He would make them fishers of men. In the sea, fish go with the tide and currents, and that is exactly where mankind goes in this world. Without knowing it, man follows the tides of history, sometimes surviving to an old age, but very often eaten up by bigger fish. Life consumes man and in the end he has fooled himself into thinking that he has gained something only to realize that he has lost everything.
Christ does not always call on us, but when He does, then a wise person will heed that call and respond. Leaving that sin nature style of life behind, and commit himself to a lifetime study of Bible doctrine. That is a consistent daily study program. Being resolved and self disciplined enough to stick with it regardless of what distractions might present themselves, or what attacks one might encounter from other persons or events designed to break down your self esteem or resolve.
These men though somewhat stupid in their early years, went on to become the foundation, the rock, of Christianity. But then we are all stupid in the beginning of our spiritual growth. But our stupidity is quickly overcome with our positive volition, reinforced with Bible doctrine, and growth from applying it to our daily lives.
They followed Christ with the stories of miracles, and doctrine as it was lived in their time. We have stories from the written word. Stories of someone we have never seen nor heard. Yet the power of doctrine and faith is just a great today as it was then.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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