Jesus had been baptized and tested in the wilderness by Satan. He had begun his ministry in the power of the Spirit (Luke 4:14). The Holy Spirit had coordinated Jesus' appearance in the synagogue to coincide with a public reading from Isaiah 61:1-2 — a prophecy emphasizing the Messiah's God-ordained and Spirit-empowered mission (Luke 4:18-19). By the time we get to Luke 5:1, we know who Jesus is and that he is Spirit-empowered.
Luke then characterized the Lord's ministry in Luke 5 with a series of phrases that should take our breath away. If you are like me, however, sometimes, because a passage is just the next assignment in my daily reading, I find myself plodding my way through the reading. I catch myself ignoring the Spirit's promptings to make Jesus' truth real in my life. I forget my commitment to be JesuShaped!
Hopefully, Luke's simple phrases will reawaken me to the Lord's mission for me as his disciple.
What about you?
Why do I try to read one chapter from the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John) each day?
Because I want to be like the empty-handed Peter who followed Jesus' directions on where to fish, and said, "Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets" (Luke 5:5 ESV).
These two phrases convicted me today:
"Lord, at your word we will do whatever you want us to do!"
I have such easy access to the Lord's words and the story of his life.
- Do I aggressively pursue Jesus because his words reveal the truth and the heart of God? How many times, lately, have I done something I questioned because I took Jesus' at his word?
- Will I, like Peter, Andrew, James, John, and Matthew (Luke 5:11), fully follow Jesus simply because he called me to follow him?
- Will I come to the Lord Jesus with confidence because I know that if he wills, he is able (Luke 5:12; Ephesians 3:20-21) to do everything I ask, and more?
No matter what else I am doing, or not doing, in my daily Bible study, I am committed to walking with Jesus each day — here's my reading plan that takes me through the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) four times in a year.
I want to know my Savior's words and how he interacted with people. I want Jesus to be real to me — not just a subject I study or data points I collect from my daily reading about a theological character. No matter what else tries to push its way into my life, I am committed to aggressively crowd in to hear Jesus speak the word of God and to see the Word of God in action as he lives among and ministers to people.
At another point in Jesus' ministry, the Lord shared some hard teachings, and many in the crowd turned back from following him. Jesus turned to his closest followers and asked if they were going to leave as well? Peter's answer shows us his heart was still committed to living by the principle, "At your word I will…" do and be whatever you ask of me:
Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God" (John 6:68-69).