The wisdom of fishing

And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.(Matthew 4:19)

We are going to study one of the oldest professions in human history and discover what is so special about it that made Jesus a promise to His would be disciples, and use it as a description of what He will make them but only for the purpose of catching men. This profession is fishing.

There is something special about fishing that qualifies it to be used as a metaphor by Jesus to show pater James and John how they’ll save men

When you study the gospels, you’ll notice that Jesus used likened the kingdom of heaven to many scenarios and theses scenarios are it easier for people to grasp what the kingdom of is.

Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:(Matthew 13:31)

Another parable spake he unto them; The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened.(Matthew 13:33)

Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:(Matthew 13:44-45).

Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind:(Matthew 13:47)

The words of Jesus are key and it’s important to study them closely, because they contain great revelations.

#Softteachings

We are bonded by love

And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.(Acts 4:32)

This is the last reason why the poor need the Gospel that I’ll share with you before we move on.

And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common. And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.(Act 4:32-35)

Another reason why the poor need the Gospel is because when they are saved they’ll join a union that will physical meet their needs. The love that God has called us into makes us selfless so that we can properly see and attend to the needs of our brethren. The Unity that we have in Christ is greater than any bond that can fuse people together. The blood of Jesus is brings us closer than our family’s blood and it doesn’t care about race or culture.

The poor need the church(body of Christ) to be United because a single denomination is not enough to display the love God has for them. Sometimes words are not enough to preach, actions are always enough to preach. Christ took away what divided men by destroying what separated men from God.

And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech. And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there. And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them throughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for morter. And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth. And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded. And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.(Genesis 11:1-6)

Nothing empowers men like unity that’s why God gave us one mediator so that we may be United in one. How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.(Hebrew 9:14-15).

So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.(Romans 12:5).

Make it a point to display the love of God to everyone because it’s a testament to the love God has for them.

#Softteachings

The Poor also have an inheritance

Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?( James 2:5)

One of the benefits of being a child of God is that we have an inheritance in heaven because we are co-heirs with Christ. And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.(Romans 8:17).

The Bible says that God has chosen the poor of this world rich in faith and we know that we need faith to please God. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.(Hebrews 11:6). Hence the level of your faith determines what you will do for God. The rich in faith are the ones for forsake all for the Gospel, the reason why the rich in this world find it hard to be born again is because they are too attached to their material possessions, no wonder why the Lord said it’s very difficult for the rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.(Matthew 19:23-24). The eye of a needle is the name of a gate in the city of Jerusalem, the gate is too narrow for camels to enter the city while carrying a load. Hence it’s difficult for those attached to material things to go to Heaven.

The lack of material wealth has made the poor to be attached to “God”, the person might not be born again yet, but their hearts easily open up to the spirit of God. These are the type of people whom we need to strive for them to receive the Gospel because they can lay down their lives for God with ease since all they have came from God in the first place.

Many people want to be missionaries in wealth countries and cities because of material gain but those who truly want people to be saved are also willing to go to poor lands.

Everybody on earth who will get to Heaven has an inheritance waiting and anyone who has helped someone the get there will have special rewards. Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.(Revelation 2:10)

#Softteachings

God also loves the poor

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)
In today’s world the poor are the least loved and this shows by the way their hopes were raised and later disappointed by people especially those in power. Last week in South Africa we were voting and as usual the poor communities were promised heaven and earth, but no body will be surprised if the government doesn’t fulfil their promises.
Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him? (James 2:5).
Contrary to popular belief and modern strategies, God usually chooses the least and the poor for His Work. i’m not saying that God only calls the poor but that His criteria for calling people doesn’t include social or financial status because God wants to give mankind things that are far above what people are fighting, crying, and killing for. If God save you not because of your status in society there’s no reason why you should let those in a “lower class” than you perish. Jesus died for all of us equally so we can’t desire for only certain people to be saved. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: (Matthew 28:19).
Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.(Matthew 19:19).

Everybody body knows that we(Christians) are instructed to love everybody as ourselves, meaning that anything we wouldn’t do or let happen to ourselves we can’t let it happen to another person. You don’t want to go to hell and you also don’t want your loved ones to go to hell, hence you can’t let someone go to go hell or their loved ones to go end up in hell. You can’t force someone to be saved but save your conscience by telling them the truth, that is Jesus Christ and what he did for them.

Love is the reason for our actions because it’s the reason why God gave His Son for us. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16).

#Softteachings

God sees how we treat the poor as how we treat Him

For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:(Matthew 25:35)

In today’s world the poor always get the lowest type of treatment given to people, the rich, famous, and powerful are the ones who get the best hospitality everywhere they go. People have no problem sacrificing for a politician but they don’t even mind what happens to the homeless. It is this type of behaviour that makes God to judge us according to how we treat the least, because the treatment that we give the great is usually born out of selfishness, we treat them well because we are looking at getting favours from them and we don’t care about the least because of our pride since we think we have nothing to lose or gain.

If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?(1 John 4:20).

God knows that man are very selective on who they treat well, this is why God expects us to do good for people as we do good for Him. There’s no better way to achieve both than to preach the gospel to the poor. When you do so you are doing good to the least by saving them and you are doing good for God by expanding His kingdom.

The reason why Christ emphasised on preaching to the poor is because the poor have no one but God to stand for them, because everyone else only oppresses them. Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.(Luke 18:2-5).

Some of people will never help anyone until they are begged because of pride, some of us don’t care if someone is suffering as long we we are not affected. Jesus suffered for us so let us suffer for our brothers because someone suffered for you to be saved. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.(Isaiah 53:5).

God is not just looking for the soul of a millionaire but He is also looking for the soul of the homeless man. As bishop Dag Heward-mills said “a soul is a soul and it’s precious to God”

#Softteachings

The poor are automatically humble

And he said unto him, Oh my Lord, wherewith shall I save Israel? behold, my family is poor in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.(Judges 6:15)

One of the things God hates most is pride, and this disqualifies many people because God cannot use the proud. But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. (James 4:6)

A poor person is constantly caused by his conditions to be humble, yes his humbleness might not genuine but God is willing to take a risk in order to find out. Many who are rich or who think are rich have a tendency of oppressing others and ignoring God. It is usually the poor man who remembers God, it is the poor man who fasts, it is the poor man who usually has time for reading the Bible, so because of this that God comes to their life’s and tests their hearts. There is nothing which generates pride and selfishness like reading riches, history is a constant reminder of what people will do for money and wealth, and this causes them to forget the Lord.

And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.(Luke 12:16-19)

When your focus is to make money you can easily forget about God, many have. The pleasures of this life can deceive you if you’re not careful. I’m not saying that we should be poor because if we are poor we won’t be affective in preaching the gospel, since the wisdom of a poor man is not taken seriously.

Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.(Ecclesiastes 9:16).

Humble people always find it easy to be sent and used by God because God first has to solve what they see as their biggest hindrance from serving him, that is their strength and ability. Since God gives His servants His power and Spirit to do His work the poor get bold because all their life they have been looking for a might external power to come their rescue. And the Lord said unto him, Surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one man. And he said unto him, If now I have found grace in thy sight, then shew me a sign that thou talkest with me.(Judges 6:16-17).

If you want to see the true colours of a man, let him find what he is looking. And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the Lord anointed thee king over Israel?(1 Samuel 15:17).

#Softteachings

Why the poor need the Gospel

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,(Luke 4:18)

I want us to start looking at why the poor need the Gospel, because scripture that Jesus read and said that is fulfilled, first state’s that “he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor”, meaning that the poor are very important to God and they are one of the reasons they Gospel exists.

Before we go further, I want us to have a definition of the word poor, which we use as a basis for this message. According to Google’s dictionary, poor means lack, inferior, unfortunate, and those who deserve sympathy. This means that the poor are not only those who don’t have money, it’s those who lack something, whether it is money, health, peace or anything else.

The inferior speaks of those who are or are taken as not being to standard, meaning those who are undermined or rejected. We also see this point in the people Jesus Christ chose to be His disciples, they were unlearned. Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.(Acts 4:13).

The unlucky or unfortunate are who have gone through certain experience that left them with scars whether emotionally or physically. By the Bible we now that through out the history of man, God has made a habit of using prostitutes, murderers and the untrained.

And Joshua the son of Nun sent out of Shittim two men to spy secretly, saying, Go view the land, even Jericho. And they went, and came into an harlot’s house, named Rahab, and lodged there.(Joshua 2:1),

And when he went out the second day, behold, two men of the Hebrews strove together: and he said to him that did the wrong, Wherefore smitest thou thy fellow?(Exodus 2:13), And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do. And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.(Act 9:4-7).

The standards that God has set are irrespective of men, hence your past cannot stop Him from using you.

#Softteachings