Today I woke up early and decided to head back over to IHOP for breakfast. Once done, I came back to my hotel and decided I would just rest and of course ended up napping for a bit. As I woke up, I heard God say "Tim I am a fisher of men"... of course that is also understood to include women. I immediately thought of fishing.
I remember as a kid going with my brother and sometimes my dad, sometimes alone to go fishing. Most often we used live earthworms, other times artificial bait. Sometimes the fish where biting sometimes not. I imagined when I heard God say this, a hook down in the water attached to fishing line, with a live worm on the end. I also imagined an artificial worm, or some shiny lure. I thought about this and pondered.
So here I sit at my desk/laptop, writing to you as God reveals what He is placing on my heart.
In Matthew 4:18 Jesus is walking along the Sea of Galilee and He sees Simon (called Peter) and Andrew fishing, casting their net. They were fishermen. In the next verse (19) He says to them: "Come follow me and I will make you fishers of men". At once, they left everything and followed Him. Jesus continues doing this with two more brothers, James and John. They also left their boat, and their father, and followed Jesus. These men became His disciples. Jesus went on to preach the good news, and to say: Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. This was His Galilean Ministry. He went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and diseases among the people. People brought others to Him that were afflicted with various problems and torments, and those who were demon possessed, epileptics, paralytics and He healed them!
Great multitudes of people followed Him.
After this, Jesus went up on a mountain and His disciples came to Him. Then He taught them saying:
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you." Matthew 5:1-12 NKJV
(I encourage all to continue to read the rest of this story)...
I go back to the image of that fishing line, with the worm - I think about the Truth and how that compares to something artificial that has no substance. What are we using for bait? Have we taken a bit of something that only satisfies for a season, that fails to nourish our souls?
Even a fish knows the difference. If we didn't have a hook on the end of the line and we simply threw an artificial lure in the water surely something would bite, but upon discovering the truth of it, the fish would spit it back out. Do we not have a greater ability to discern false doctrine from the True Gospel? The good news of the Kingdom?
So much of what we know of "Christianity" today is an artificial shiny doctrine that is false, I tell you. So many think we have to dress it up, and make it shiny or loud, flamboyant, and dramatic - but in reality, the Truth the real Truth, speaks for itself and has substance.
The things of this world, even false doctrines, will only last for a while, and people find themselves still hungering for something more. I tell you, that "something more" is only found in Jesus Christ, in His life giving and sustaining Word. In His Spirit. The things of this world, will pass away but His Word will never pass away.
When God spoke to me this morning saying "Tim I am a fisher of men" - He was sparking my interest, getting my attention... to get into His Word, to say again to me: "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." John 14:6
The ministry of Jesus is wonderful. One of the things that is evident wherever He went and journeyed, was the deliverance and healing that took place. The ministries we see today lack the demonstration of that power. Why is that? Could it be that the ministry is built upon that artificial lure, hook, line and sinker? Jesus said that we would do even greater things but where are they? I tell you, I believe with all my heart, there are many, who are searching for this and long to see this true and powerful ministry of Jesus restored in the land. But where are the disciples who believe and follow like that of Simon/Peter, Andrew, John and James?
Jesus cleansed a leper, healed the centurion's servant, healed Peter's mother-in-law, delivered many demon-possessed people, heals a paralytic, restore's a ruler's daughter back to life, restores sight to two blind men, causes a mute man to regain speech.
All honor praise and glory be to Him that sits on the throne. My Father in Heaven, my friend, and counselor, my strong tower and refuge, the One who carries me when I cannot stand on my own, who encourages me and reveals to me His wonderful mercies, goodness, and forgiveness. Who's love knows no bounds!! Amen!