Tonight we will revisit thoughts on the power of the Word of God. We must remember in these days that governments have set boundaries for us, we know that God’s Word is not bound, the power of God is constantly working through His Word as we share it with one another and with the world that needs to hear the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Text for tonight is Luke 5:1-11 Thought: Man’s response to the Word of God. We will read the verses as we come to them in this outline. We see first –
I. At the Word, men came to hear.
Luke 5:1 And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,
These people had heard the Scripture read all of their lives, but they noticed a difference when
Jesus preached and taught –
A. The words carried authority.
We learn of the people’s reaction in –
Matthew 7:28-29 And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.
Think about this – when you are speaking to people and reading from a text, if you have written the text, and the written words are your words, do think the message will be more interesting and influential to them than if you simply were reading someone else’s words? The author can explain His meaning and purpose with authority! This is what the people noticed as Jesus taught them –
B. The words captured attention.
John 7:46 The officers answered, Never man spake like this man.
The people learned quickly that Jesus was no ordinary man. His words revealed His authority.
We also learn that –
C. The words convicted of sin and righteousness.
John 6:66-69 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.
Many are –
1. Too convicted to stay –
From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.
and some are –
2. Too convicted to leave –
Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.
Many church attenders know the name of God the Father, Jesus – God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. They know of the Bible, God’s Word, and some have read the Bible for themselves. Yet, they do not know God through personal faith in through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
They have been told that the church leaders will tell them what they need to know and what they need to do. They have been told that they do not have the education to understand the Word of God, having not been to seminary or Bible school. Nothing has changed throughout the ages. Jesus accused the religious leadership of not understanding the truth themselves and teaching false doctrine to others.
Matthew 15:14 Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.
It is of utmost importance that we follow the Lord through His Word and follow those leaders He has called to lead in accordance with His Word. In both cases, we must personally know His Word.
Notice the working of the Word of God in the lives of those Jews in the synagogue in Berea when Paul and the missionaries preached to them –
Acts 17:11-12 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few.
See also that –
II. At the Word, men served in simple faith.
Luke 5:2-3 And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets. And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon’s, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship.
They had met Him in the south where John the Baptist was preaching. They spoke with Him, believed Him, and followed Him in the area they lived. Now Jesus met them again and asked them to help Him.
A. They gave their time. They set aside what they were doing to help Him.
B. They gave their talents.
2 Corinthians 8:12 For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.
They worked at keeping the boat steady and in place so that He could teach the people.
Notice as they heard His teaching and added to what they already knew –
III. At the Word, men submitted to the Lord’s command by faith. Luke 5:4,5
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.
They trusted Him above trusting in their own knowledge and efforts –
Proverbs 3:5 (KJV) Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
We note the results –
IV. At the Word, men secured great blessings.
Luke 5:6-7 And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink.
They learned to listen and to trust God.
V. At the Word, men’s hearts were convicted of sin and broken.
A. Men confess God’s glory before others. They are not ashamed!
1. God’s Word breaks down man’s pride.
Luke 5:8-9 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken:
2. God’s Word breaks down man’s presumption. Thomas
John 20:25 The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.
John 20:27-28 Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.
B. Men confess God’s glory in His presence.
Notice Isaiah’s reaction – In chapter five he cried out against the ungodly: “Woe unto them, Woe unto them, Woe unto them…” but in chapter 6 we see a change –
Isaiah 6:1-5 (KJV) In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.
This written Word still breaks our hearts today and we cry out along with Isaiah “Woe is me”!
At His Word, the Living Word and the Written Word, our hearts are convicted of sin and broken!
VI. At His Word, men will surrender their lives completely to Him.
Luke 5:10-11 And so was also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men. And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed him.
The Word of God convinced men to put Jesus first in their lives, to trust Him, and to follow Him.
We need to ask ourselves these questions tonight as we consider what we have just heard from the account of Luke in chapter 5.
When God’s Word is preached:
Do we make an effort to move close to hear it? Do we want to hear more, or are we waiting for the opportunity to leave?
Do we help the preacher in any way we can to preach the Word to as many people as possible. Do we pray for him as he is preaching?
Do we hear the Word and trust God, even above trusting ourselves, and are ready to obey Him?
Do we receive blessings and tell others that they might share in the goodness of God? (Peter and Andrew called out to James and John)
Do we admit when we are wrong and confess to God, asking forgiveness?
Will you surrender your life to God tonight, will to follow Him where He leads?
God has given the promise of His presence and power as we follow Him.
“…and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.”
What is your response to His Word tonight?