Monday, January 24, 2011

Lesson 2: Simon Peter

Read Luke 5:1-11

Video blog (by Mike)

Disciples That Bounce (by Richard)

We begin our study of The Men Jesus Called with Peter, the most prominent of all of Jesus' disciples. What makes Peter so distinct?
  • Peter is among the first and possibly THE first of the disciples to be called (Mark 3:16).
  • Peter's name appears first in the lists given of disciples (Matthew 10:2-4, Mark 3:16-19, Luke 6:14-16, Acts 1:13).
  • Peter was present at the transfiguration along with James and John (Luke 9:28-36).
  • Peter speaks more often in the Gospels than any of the Jesus' followers.
  • Peter is the first to declare Jesus the Messiah (Matthew 16:16).
  • Peter is described by Jesus as the "rock" upon which the church will be built (Matthew 16:18).
  • Peter walks on water.
Clearly Peter is central to the group of men Jesus called. What draws me to Peter is that he is all of the above yet also this:
  • Peter is quick to speak and act; he sometimes looks foolish, but is clearly a risk-taker and a natural leader. That which makes him a leader makes him a fool and this foolishness is often how God demonstrates His strength (2 Corinthians 12:9). You can't make this stuff up!
  • Peter is fearful and begins to sink right after he walked on water (Matthew 14:28-33).
  • Peter denies Jesus three times immediately right after Jesus warned him that he would (Luke 22).
It is this "sink or swim" journey that most resonates with me and many, many Christians. We fight the enemy and our own flesh yet we are redeemed and continue to bring redemption to ourselves and others. Over the years I have described King David to children as a "bouncer" -- he screws up then rallies or "bounces" back; Peter is a "bouncer" as well.

What can we take away from our consideration of the life of Peter? It's okay to be who you are, whether you're a natural leader or a natural something else, it's okay to use your talents and abilities, in fact God gave you those (Ephesians 2:10). Be aware that your strength has a flip side that may sometimes be your undoing. It's okay to be undone because that sometimes leads to a show of God's strength in your weakness. Are you a bouncer?

(Further reading: 8 Responses to Christ's Call)

Study Questions

Feel free to answer any or all questions in the comment section below for interaction with fellow participants~Thx

1. What do you think Christ spoke about as He was teaching from Simon Peter’s boat (Luke 5:3)?

2. Sometimes God asks a person to do what seems to be a crazy thing (Luke 5:4-5). Has God asked you to do anything crazy? Did you do it or not?

3. Can you remember a significant moment in your life where God so impacted you it literally changed your direction?

4. What do you think about the following statement? Some people are in Christianity for the new car or house or more money (the fish) that will come versus for the person of Christ.

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