This post is part of a 9-part series called Extraordinary Pastor, Ordinary Follower of Jesus. You can watch the introduction video here.

Part 5 – Jesus Offers Extraordinary Power to Ordinary People

And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking.  They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. Luke 5:6-7 Often, in your own strength you get hung up on all the things you can’t do.

Peter knew that this was not the time or place to catch fish. But Jesus told him to do it so he obeyed. What Peter didn’t anticipate was that Jesus has the power to bend the laws of nature and the power to accomplish extraordinary things that would be impossible in your ordinary strength. I want you to see two truths from these short verses.

  1. Jesus has otherworldly power
  • Notice that Luke emphasizes the greatness of this miracle. Look at the superlative language that he uses to describe the catch. He says, there was “a great multitude” of fish (:6), “the nets were about to break” (:6), “to the point of sinking” (:7)
  • This miracle not only demonstrates Jesus’ power, but his omniscience. His ability to know exactly where the fish were and what to do to catch them. I wonder if this miracle started the night before … did Jesus have a hand in keeping the fish from being caught all night long?
  • We also see that the fishermen were scrambling the whole time to keep up with the miracle. His power was completely different from their power. We read that they signaled one another “by nodding their heads.” The picture is that their hands were so occupied with the miraculous catch that they could only motion with their heads. And their business partners in the other boat had to get involved. Now Andrew, James, and John are all also engaged and both boats are ready to sink.
  1. Following Jesus means just keeping up with what he’s already doing.
  • Henry Blackaby said the famous line in his book Experiencing God, “Find out where God is at work and join Him.” We see here the fruits of obeying Jesus even when it doesn’t make sense. It’s important to understand that whatever it is that you do best, Jesus can do it better. Peter was an expert fisherman and Jesus made him look silly. Even in your sweet spot, it’s important to follow Jesus.
  • Think about Jesus’ role and the disciples’ role in this miraculous catch. Jesus told them when and where to fish. They allowed themselves to be used, became the hands and feet of the operation, and obeyed even if it didn’t make sense. He was in the driver’s seat, they were in the passenger seat to this miracle.

This whole scene is a symbolic picture of the ministry outcomes that Jesus will give those who obey. This multitude of fish caught by Jesus’ power and authority is a sneak preview for the disciples as to what would happen later in the book of Acts and beyond. I imagine these same disciples may have been having flashbacks to this moment right around Acts 2 (then Acts 5:14; 14:1; etc.) Where are you holding back because you think you can handle it better than God? He has extraordinary power and he offers it to you.

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