May 1st, '18
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message by Kris Jackson
have ye any meat? They answered him, No" (John 21:5)
Ooh, don't be so touchy. Jesus gave Peter and
the boys a little jab and they got on the defensive. Remember, Peter said, "I'm
going fishing" and six other disciples tagged along. They fished all night,
caught absolutely nothing, and in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore calling
them "children". "Hey kiddies, did you catch anything last night?" They were
acting like children so why shouldn't He talk to them that way? Jesus had risen
from the dead just a couple weeks earlier. This certainly wasn't the time for
reestablishing their fishing business. Earlier they had forsaken their nets to
follow Christ but the faith walk was getting difficult and perhaps tiring so
they opted to taste a little of the old life again. "I'm going fishing". We've
all said that in one way or another. "I'm quitting this church", "I've had it
with this job", "I'm buying a souped up Mustang", "I feel like having a beer",
"I'm going fishing".
But what does the flesh have to show for its
selfishness? Did you catch any fish? Peter grumbled, "No". Consider the
psychology in that answer. It certainly wasn't courteous. He could have said,
"Well, the fish just weren't biting last night", or something more diplomatic.
Instead, he blurts out, "No!" There was frustration in his voice. The
flesh wants to do things its own way, on its own timing. When Jesus told them
to "cast the net on the right side of the ship" they caught a huge draft of
fish. That added fuel to the fire; a preacher telling skilled fisherman how to
fish. And there was failure in his voice. Peter was reminded of a
similar scene over three years earlier when he replied to Jesus, "We have
toiled all night long and have taken nothing" (Luke 5:5). Be sure, any
statement that starts with "we" ends with "nothing". Obeying the promptings of
the flesh nature always ends in failure.
"No!" You've said it, I've said it. God
pronounced judgment on "the multitude of No" (Jeremiah 46:25). "No" was an
ancient biblical city but it's also a contemporary unbiblical attitude. When
Peter shrugged his shoulders and said "no" there was frustration and failure
in his voice but also a lot of fatigue. Those Galileans didn't fish
with a flashlight, hook and bobber. They wrestled heavy nets all night long.
Their arms were worn out with rowing. That relates to the "works of the flesh"
in Galatians. They burned the midnight oil and poured on the midnight toil.
"Children, have you any meat?" The question scalded like salt on a paper cut..."No!"
The disciples had a lesson to learn, that they could accomplish more in one
second in the will of God, under Christ's direction, than they could accomplish
in a month slaving away in their own strength. Be sure, Jesus knows where the
fish are! That applies to financial investment, making sales, knowing the right
person to talk to at the right time and every other form of fishing. Why is it
that Church A brings in a much bigger haul than Church B? They fish the "right
side of the ship", not the wrong side. There is a right and wrong way to do
things and it is in communion with Christ that such guidance is revealed. So if
you're prone to grimace and scornfully admit, "No", let me assure you there is
a remedy. It's called "walking in the Spirit". His guidance always turns a "no"
into a "yes".