He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Matt. 4:19. What does that mean? I mean really, what does that mean to you and me in this day and age? OK I’m ready, tell me what ‘Follow Me’ means. Does it mean ‘walk behind Me’? Or does it mean ‘Do what I do’? Or maybe, ‘Be like Me.’? Think about that. You decide. What does it mean to you?
And “I will make you”? What will Jesus do to make you into something different from what you’ve been before? What is going to happen to make you into something else than you were before? How is it going to happen? Is something required of you in order for Him to make you different? Or is Jesus going to do the whole thing, whatever it is? What must we do to be changed by Jesus? What must we BE to be changed by Jesus?
And “fishers of men”? We can probably figure out what the fishing part means. But fishing for men (for people)? Are we going to throw the nets, and the people are going to come jump in our nets? What will we use for bait? Where should we go to fish? Who can show us how to fish for people? Someone said that if you want to catch fish, you have to think like a fish. Does that mean we need to get so close to the fish that we develop a relationship with them? Scary thought, huh?
‘Course in some sense the answers are easy. If you want to follow Jesus, you just have to do what He said, “If anyone would follow Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23. And if we want Jesus to make us into something new, something different, we have to be like Jesus, like it says in Philippians 2:5-8, “Let this attitude of Jesus be in you.” The attitude of a humble servant. One who would humble himself and die for others. And if you want to catch fish, you have to get to know the fish, go where the fish are, develop a relationship with the fish. Like Jesus said, as he ate with the tax collectors and prostitutes, “The healthy don’t need a doctor, but the sick. I didn’t come to call those who think they’re righteous. I came to call those who know they’re sinners.” Luke 5:31-32. Simple, but not easy.