Luke 5:4-5 “Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.”
Children seem to accept the instruction of their parents and elders at a young age. They have had to trust their entire life to the keeping of those that feed, clothe, clean, carry, and keep them. As they grow, we teach them to exercise their independence, and the path they take begins to become their own.
Every parent tries to teach the importance of obedience. Within that, teaching is a healthy respect for the authority giving the lesson. If there is no respect for authority, chaos will ultimately ensue.
As we age, we choose those things to which we will submit. We will easily give ourselves to that which benefits us and resist that which is difficult, or seemingly unprofitable at the time.
It struck me when I read this passage today. Peter, James, and John had been out fishing all night. They were tired, hungry, and longing for sleep. Just then, Jesus comes and requests they allow Him to use their boat to teach the crowd that had been following Him.
It is not recorded here in Luke just what He taught, but undoubtedly, it impressed these fishermen. Then, Jesus tells them to launch out into the deep and cast their nets once again. It didn’t make sense. They had just returned from an utterly unfruitful venture and were near exhaustion.
Yet, there was something they heard or stirring within them that caused Peter to say:
“…nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.”
That prompting yielded more than they had hoped for and more than they had sought all through the night. This miraculous catch had nothing to do with the fish. It had everything to do with the souls of the men Jesus was about to call into His ministry.
What they witnessed was enough to convince all three to leave their profession and follow this man. Peter was in such awe; he fell at Jesus’ feet and said:
Luke 5:8 “When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.”
Having been a saved child of God now for almost thirty years, I have to guard against the mediocrity that creeps into my life when I take the working of God around me for granted. Seeing a soul come the cross and receive salvation is a wondrous and miraculous thing. Enough so that the angels in heaven are rejoicing.
Luke 15:10 “Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.”
Does it happen so frequently, we think it commonplace? Or, does it happen so infrequently that we are skeptical if they meant it at all?
“At thy word” signifies a submission.
“At thy word” reveals a level of obedience.
“At thy word” is an acquisition of wisdom through experience that speaks volumes to those looking on at our life.
Some say to follow every word of the Bible is to do so blindly. Those that would say such a thing do so ignorantly. For such a one to accept God at His Word and follow, it takes faith. Jesus met such a person while here on this earth.
Matthew 8:5-10 “And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him, And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him. The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.”
We are all called to take God at His Word. First, for salvation. Then, to continue trusting that He who has saved us, is worthy of our trust for every other aspect of our life.
It can come so simple if we would but say, “At thy word…”