Jesus’ First Recruits

John Koedyker

Read: Mark 1:16-20

Jesus said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.” (v. 17)

When I was a small child in Sunday school, I learned the song, “I Will Make You Fishers of Men.” As I write these words, the song is playing in my head. It’s a great little song with a catchy tune. I must say I am glad that song sticks with me. Why? Because it’s biblical and it’s true.

In a recent Washington Post article, Ed Stetzer tells about the responsibility that all Christians have for sharing the gospel. This message of fishing for people applies to you and me. However, as Stetzer points out, “Christians, evangelicals included, seem to love evangelism, as long as someone else is doing it.” Instead, he says to those of us who are Christians, “It’s time for all of us to start preaching our good news again.”

He cautions that evangelism does not mean “coercion.” Respect and tolerance for varying beliefs is necessary. Christians, Stetzer points out, do not need to “rent a stadium to proclaim the gospel.” Rather, “most Christians can gain a hearing for the gospel while exchanging life stories at the coffee shop, taking a meal to a hurting family or standing for justice in an unjust world.”

It’s interesting that Jesus begins and ends his ministry with the same evangelistic message: sharing the gospel with people (Matt. 28:19). In a sense, the Lord needs you and me to complete his mission! —John Koedyker

Prayer: Lord, use me to tell people the good news of salvation in Christ. Amen.