Jesus Calls Simon and Heals a Man with Leprosy
Comments for Study 10
Memory Verse: 13
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I. Put Out Into Deep Water (1-7)
>1. What shows the urgency of the crowd at Lake of Gennesaret?
* Luke 5:1a "One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, with the people crowding around him"
* Also in Matthew 4:18-22 and Mark 4:16-20.
* The people were thirsty for the word of God. They had no one who taught as Jesus did. They had no one to look to.
* "One day" -Shows time of calling was around, not exactly this time. Luke wasn't either concerned or couldn't be sure of the exact timing.
* "Lake of Gennesaret" -Lake of Gennesaret was the Greek name, Sea of Galilee was the Hebrew name, and Sea of Tiberius was the Roman name for the same lake.
* "the people crowding around him" -Jesus' popularity had grown quickly. Everyone wanted to get close to him to hear what he had to say, and perhaps to see if he would cast out another demon and perform more miracles.
* Later we are told Jesus saw the people as sheep without a shepherd. (Matthew 9:36; Mark 6:34)
>How did Jesus serve them?
* Luke 5:1b "and listening to the word of God"
* The people had a lot of problems. Jesus saw what was really important and he taught them to fill their spiritual need. They needed the word of God to help them turn to God.
* Jesus is a fisherman casting the word of God into the sea of peoples as to catch some fish.
* The Old Testament prophets used the sea as a metaphor for the nations. (Isaiah 57:20; Daniel 7:2-3; Habakkuk 1:4)
* Teaching the word of God is very important in the kingdom of God.
* Teaching the word of God begins with an anointing of the Holy Spirit. Studying the word of God is as important as the anointing of the Holy Spirit.
>What can we learn from him?
* The best way to serve people is to give them the word of God.
* People can crowd around us, pressing us for help in many different ways too.
>2. How did the two fishermen contrast with the crowd?
* Luke 5:2 "he saw at the water's edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets."
* They weren't that interested in Jesus. They were working. Maybe they thought they didn't need it because they had been with John.
* They were average Jews in Galilee, poor and had no formal education.
* They were hard workers.
* See a picture of a boat and fishermen to the right. It was from these shores, fringed by Capernaum and Chorazin (Matthew 11:21), the scene of recent excavations, that Jesus launched his ministry. The Sea of Galilee, overlooked on the west by a ridge of bare hills and in the north by the snowy slopes of Hermon, is still well stocked with fish. Fishing boats with sails and oars (Mark 6:48) are there in plenty today, as they were in the time of Jesus. So also are the sudden squalls (Mark 4:37) which can be quite dangerous. (The Bible as History in Pictures, Werner Keller)
>What had they been doing?
* "who were washing their nets"
>Why do you think Jesus got into Simon's boat and asked him to put out a little from the shore?
* Luke 5:3 "He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat."
* Jesus stopped Peter from working and forced him to listen to his teaching.
* Teaching this way made it easier for the crowd to hear Jesus and it kept the crowd from pressing against him.
* Jesus set the situation right for the miracle to happen.
* Jesus planned this to happen. Jesus came to Peter and the others. He followed them. (John 1:40; Luke 4:38-39; Mark 1:14-20) Chronological order is probably John 1:40, Mark 1:14-20, Luke 4:30, 39, Luke 5:1-11.
>3. After Jesus finished speaking, what did he tell Simon to do?
* Luke 5:4 "When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, 'Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.'"
* Jesus waited until Peter had a chance to hear the word of God again.
* Jesus suggested the act was to catch fish.
See a wood engraving by Gustave Dore (1832-1883) to the right. Dore's drawings were in Bibles that are now in public domain. This one was scanned in by creationism.org.
>What spiritual lesson can we learn from his words?
* Jesus had a personal relationship with his disciples. He came to where they were.
* Jesus taught the word of God practically.
* Jesus was direct. Jesus challenged Peter's faith. Jesus didn't ask; he demanded.
* Jesus practically taught Peter that everything his job provided would be and was provided by God. Thus Peter could trust God and leave his job to follow Jesus.
>4. From a human point of view, why was Jesus' suggestion difficult for Simon to accept?
* Luke 5:5 "Simon answered, 'Master, we've worked hard all night and haven't caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.'"
* "Master" -Peter had known Jesus even as far back as just after Jesus had been baptised and tempted. See John 1.
* Jesus told Peter to do this because he saw that he had received Jesus' words. Jesus now wanted to teach him practical faith. He wanted Peter to learn more of who he was and what the Messiah would do. Jesus wanted Peter's faith grow to the point to where he would follow him. Peter had met Jesus earlier while John was at the Jordan (John 1), but had not left everything to follow him.
* The disciples had worked hard all their lives to provide for their families. They worked all night and caught nothing.
* Daytime wasn't the time to catch fish because they went deep when it was hot.
* Fisherman didn't put down into deep waters because it was harder to bring the nets back up, even if they could reach that far. If the nets hit bottom they could get cut, dirty and get tangled up.
* Peter and his friends had already washed the nets was should have been heading home to sleep.
* Peter and his friends were at shore. In order to go deep they would have to go far from the shore, a lot of work for a tired man.
* Sometimes Jesus tells us to do the hard, irrational, and unreasonable.
* "Master" -Shows his heart and understanding of who was Jesus was.
>What was Simon's attitude toward Jesus and his word?
* "But because you say so, I will let down the nets"
* Peter knew Jesus' words were strange, but he was willing to trust Jesus.
* Peter was willing to speak his mind.
>What does this show about the potential he had to be a disciple?
* He believed Jesus' words and direction.
* He had faith enough to obey. He respected Jesus. He had a learning mind. He overcame human thinking and his own idea.
>To be a leader?
* He tried again. He respected Jesus and his place with Jesus. He believed and obeyed. He was willing. He was not afraid of failure when Jesus gave the instruction. He wasn't afraid to admit his weakness to Jesus.
>5. What were the results of Simon's small act of obedience?
* Luke 5:7 "So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink."
* "their partners in the other boat" -James and his brother John. Andrew his brother. (Mark 1:16)
* Peter and his partners are not recorded selling the fish.
* Through this Peter's eyes were opened.
>What does this teach about Jesus?
* He controls animals.
* He blesses faith. He works when we simply obey.
* His methods of catching his disciples and helping them.
* He answers prayers. He understands us and helps us in ways we specifically need.
* He didn't mind bothering Peter and interrupting Peter's plans.
II. From Now On You Will Catch Men (8-11)
* The illustration title "Jesus and Four Fisherman" by an unknown author is now in public domain.
>6. How did Simon react to this miracle?
* Luke 5:8-10a "When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus' knees and said, 'Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!' For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon's partners."
* "Go away from me" -He wasn't comfortable in the presence of Jesus. He wanted freedom from Jesus' presence. (John 3:19-20)
* Isaiah 6:5
* Respected Jesus.
>What did he realize about himself?
* "I am a sinful man!"
* Before he meet Jesus, Peter thought he was a nice guy who worked hard and did his best to do the right thing.
* After meeting Jesus, Peter realized that he was a petty man who avoided the most important matter, his real identity before a holy God.
>What did he realize about Jesus?
* "Lord" -Not "master" (5).
* He realized Jesus was more than what he first understood about Jesus.
* Simon's eyes were opened. He understood something about himself and God. He had a new true prospective. He was in the truth.
>7. What did Jesus tell Simon?
* Luke 5:10b "Then Jesus said to Simon, "Don't be afraid; from now on you will catch men."
* Peter was afraid and Jesus calmed his fears.
* Peter said, "Go away," but Jesus didn't leave him. Jesus doesn't give up on anyone.
* "Don't be afraid" -Assurance of acceptance. Forgiveness.
* "From now on you will" -Direction, vision, and promise.
>Why might Simon have been afraid?
* Isaiah 3:10-15 "Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds. Woe to the wicked! Disaster is upon them! They will be paid back for what their hands have done. Youths oppress my people, women rule over them. O my people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path. The LORD takes his place in court; he rises to judge the people. The LORD enters into judgment against the elders and leaders of his people: "It is you who have ruined my vineyard; the plunder from the poor is in your houses. What do you mean by crushing my people and grinding the faces of the poor?" declares the Lord, the LORD Almighty."
* He realized his avoidance of God while others pressed to listen to Jesus.
* He was convicted. He had fear of the Lord. (Proverbs 1:7)
>What does it mean to catch men? Compare and contrast catching fish and catching men.
* "catch men" -To bring them into a love relationship with God; apostleship, discipleship.
* Acts 1:8 "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."
* John 15:16
* Fish don't jump into boats. Fish are slippery. Fish are hard to catch. Bate and nets are needed. Fishing takes patience and time. Fishing requires action and determination. There are different kinds of fish that need different kinds of bate and fishing methods. There is more than one way to catch fish. Catching fish require going to water.
>8. How did the fishermen respond to Jesus' invitation?
* Luke 5:11 "So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him."
* "everything" -boats (job), family, hometown, wife, security
>How do you think they could make such a clear decision?
* Simon's problem was also James, John, and Andrew's problem.
>What can we learn from them?
* Simply believe
* Follow Jesus
* Be willing to leave all behind
>9. What can we learn about Jesus through this event?
* Jesus' love. Jesus' commitment. Jesus' determination. Jesus' method. Jesus' understanding.
>What can we learn from him about how to be a fisher of men?
III. Be Clean (12-16)
>10. How did the leper act in faith? (12)
* Luke 5:12 "While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came along who was covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he fell with his face to the ground and begged him, 'Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.'"
* Also in Matthew 8:1-4 and Mark 1:40-45.
* "leprosy" -Leprosy was a term used to describe many times of skin problems in Jesus' day. This was probably what we know as leprosy because it covered the whole body. Luke was a doctor and thus knew that describing it this way would help us reach this conclusion.
* Leprosy is caused by a contagious very small bacteria that breaks down the nervous system. Leprosy spreads through the whole body. A leper could have leprosy for three (3) years before they begin to realize there is a problem. Lepers slowly lose their feeling, first growing numb in the extremities. They bruise and cut easily. They cut themselves. The body slowly become disfigured and dies. They can lose parts of their bodies as the disease advances. They are separated from society so the disease doesn't spread to others. Leprosy kills.
* He was humble, desperate, he respected Jesus' healing power and authority, and he had faith in Jesus.
* He was frustrated, depressed, angry, hostile, tired, ashamed, and hopeless. He hated the was he was and could do nothing to be healed. He was a man who would eventually die of the disease.
* He envied and even hated healthy people. People was repulsed by him and it was not his fault.
* He came to Jesus in humility and respect. He understood who Jesus was. He believed.
* This is a lepers prayer.
* He knew Jesus had to power to do it. He just didn't know if Jesus was willing to heal him.
>How is sin like leprosy?
* Look again at the description in the question above. Replace leprosy with sin.
>How did Jesus respond? (13)
* Luke 5:13 "Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. 'I am willing,' he said. 'Be clean!' And immediately the leprosy left him."
* "Jesus reached out" -Love
* "Jesus... touched the man" -The way to catch the disease was touch. No one had touched him for many years. Jesus accepted him. When Jesus touches us we are healed, he cannot be effected by our sin and impurity.
* "I am willing" -Jesus relieved the man's fears. He gave him hope and joy.
* We need to be willing to touch sinners so they may be healed.
* Jesus never refused someone who came to be healed by faith.
>What can we learn from Jesus direction to him? (14)
* Luke 5:14 "Then Jesus ordered him, 'Don't tell anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them.'"
* Jesus followed Moses law and had others follow it as long as it was in effect. The law was and is good.
* The healed man would be testimony to the priests.
* The man could then enter Jewish society according to the law. All would know he was clean.
* Leviticus 13:17
* Jesus didn't want people coming to him only to be healed physically.
>When more and more people coming, why do you think Jesus withdrew to lonely places?
* Luke 5:15-16 "Yet the news about him spread all the more, so that crowds of people came to hear him and to be healed of their sicknesses. But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed."
* Mark 1:33-39 is a parallel passage. Matthew 14:13 and Mark 6:32 also record Jesus praying in solitary places.
* Jesus loved even dirty people. He compassionately accept all. Jesus is always moved by faith. Jesus follows God's words. Jesus didn't seek popularity.
* Jesus didn't seek the physically sick like he sought Peter.
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