Tag Archives: Peter

God Lovingly Pursues Us When We Fail: Peter…Again

Read John 21.

I. Jesus Uses You Where You Are.

Jesus can use you where you are on this earth as long as you are honest with who and where you are and humble yourself. The most important thing on earth to Jesus is His sheep. Sometimes he has to reorient us, like he did for Peter. Every task can only be done through Christ. He doesn’t ask for perfection. He asks for humility and honesty.

II. Jesus Makes You What You Want To Be.

How? The answer: “Follow Jesus.” John 13, Peter says he would die for Christ, and though he wasn’t ready then, he would be. In the end Peter was martyred by crucifixion for Christ’s sake. Jesus says, “Follow me.” Don’t worry about the other guys; it’s not worth comparing. “The Christian life is about direction not perfection.”

Jesus looks at a “failure” and says, “I can use you now.” There may be consequences to sin and He may not use you in the same way as you were used before, but He can use any of us wherever we are physically, spiritually, emotionally, mentally. In I Peter 5:1-4, Peter exhorts others humbly to shepherd the flock of God, just as Christ had exhorted him to feed His sheep. At the end of the day, Christ is the Chief Shepherd; we are at best his undershepherds. God is the God of Second Chances ad infinitum. Praise be to God!

To listen to Dr. Doug Finkbeiner’s full sermon, click here.

Shared at the Heritage Bible Church Adult Retreat 2010 at the Wilds Christian Camp and Conference Center.

God Lovingly Pursues Us When We Become Complacent: Peter

Read Luke 5:1-11.

Intro: In verses 1-3, Jesus preaches to a crowd in the presence of Peter, and in verses 4-7, Jesus performs a miracle for Peter. At this point, Peter had ministered with Jesus for about a year, so he knew Him, trusted Him. At the same time, Peter and his crew had been fishing all night without a bite (when was the last all-nighter you pulled for work?). He was wiped. So, when Jesus told him let down his net again, he may have been thinking that Jesus was crazy, but he was too tired to argue. He obeyed Jesus and let down the net.

I. Startled by the Greatness of God.

They caught so many fish that both boats nearly sank! What does Peter say? Not “Wow!” but “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.” Peter was a great fisherman. But even in regards to our gifts, talents, occupations, and greatest proficiencies, Jesus is still greater: He is Lord over all areas! Anything that I think I’m an expert in, compared to Jesus, I’m still a novice! God is supreme…in everything!

II. Surprised by the Grace of God

“Never minimize sin; always maximize the grace of God.” Isaiah 5, the prophet is pronouncing woe on everyone around him. In Isaiah 6, he sees the greatness of God and then includes himself in the “woe’d.” God is not giving up on me; He is continuing to pursue me! See Ephesians 3:8.

III. Submissive to the Call of God

Life is about more than fish; it’s about being fishers of men! It’s all work for the Kingdom, and even when we “catch fish,” it’s not us; it’s all God! Duty only goes so far; devotion picks up where duty ends.

Illustration: remember the following nursery rhyme:

“Pussycat, Pussycat, where have you been?”
“I’ve been to London to visit the Queen.”
“Pussycat, Pussycat, what did you there?”
“I frightened a mouse under her chair.”

How often am I “chasing mice” when in the presence of royalty?

To listen to the sermon by Dr. Doug Finkbeiner, click here.

Shared at the Heritage Bible Church Adult Retreat 2010 at the Wilds Christian Camp and Conference Center.