Our Part Mending the Body of Christ
Jesus Called Some Fishermen As His Apostles
Up before dawn, out in all types of weather, sitting in hard planked boats, straining over wet and smelly ropes and nets, fishing in Century One was not quite modern day sport fishing with a bass boat sporting swivel, high back, cushioned seats and a cooler of Cokes. Fishing was a messy, physically taxing, and never ending hard work.
Look with me at Matthew 4:18-22.
"And Jesus, walking by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brothers, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 19 Then He said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men." 20 They immediately left their nets and followed Him. 21 Going on from there, He saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets. He called them, 22 and immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed Him."
If you notice there is repeated word and it is the word "nets": the first group was casting the nets and the second group was mending the nets. Think about that word nets and how tied to the trade of fishing would be the usage and care of nets.
I'd like to ask you to do something with me. As I read Matthew 4 this week I circled that word "mending" and wrote in the margin of my Bible a reference, and a definition. So, if you find a pen, please circle "mending" and some where nearby in the margin write: Ephesians 4:12 "equipping" is the same word.
Now if you did that small study note in your Bible, you just made a connection that could transform the rest of your life this side of Heaven. It just so happens that the simple work of a fisherman in Galilee in Christ's time of mending the nets is the same concept that Jesus said would be part of the dual "employment" of each of the members of His Church.
Mending is Part of Our Job Description
You and I when we were saved became a part of a family that needs regular spiritual mending. To finish the picture of mending nets and our responsibility in the Church, please open with me to Ephesians 4:11-16.
Paul is here sharing with us the plan Jesus has to keep His saints all doing what He designed them to do.
Ephesians 4:11-16 "And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love." NKJV