22-1-17            COME, FOLLOW, GO

Optional Icebreaker: Share one thing that has encouraged you this week.

READING: Matthew 4: 12-25

SERMON

·         Background – Jesus was baptised by John, tested in the wilderness, and heard that John had been arrested.

·         He began his ministry 20 miles from home in Capernaum at the top of the Sea of Galilee. A fairly prosperous area with a Roman presence. People from Galilee were considered to be backward, uneducated and spoke in a pronounced dialect.

·         Jesus began by calling fishermen to follow him. From John’s gospel we know that Andrew had been a disciple of John the Baptist and had met Jesus.

·         They responded immediately and left what they were doing.

·         There must have been something very distinctive and attractive about Jesus.

·         Jesus called ordinary fishermen to follow him. He was not concerned about background, wealth, status, education etc.

·         It is encouraging to know that God can use any of us to help change the world in ways we may not recognise or live to see.

·         They did not know where following Jesus would lead them. It takes courage to leave behind what we know and step into the unknown.

·         The disciples were called to come to Jesus, follow him as he went throughout Galilee preaching and teaching then go to make disciples.

·         Coming and going are like 2 sides of a coin.  Christmas –Jesus coming/ Easter- Jesus going to the cross/ Pentecost- the Holy Spirit coming/ Ascension- Jesus going to the Father/ Communion- the invitation to come and then the end of the service with the call to “Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.”

·         We need to come to Jesus to learn from him and spend time with him but we also need to go for him to share his love with others.

·         What is there about us or what can we do to bring others to Jesus? The short answer is “nothing”. The only thing that makes us a potential “Fisher of Men” is Jesus. Our call is to follow as well as we can then leave the rest to God and the Holy Spirit.

 

 

QUESTIONS

1.      What did you find helpful or challenging about the sermon?

2.      What do you think the disciples might have found distinctive and attractive about Jesus?

3.      What is it that you find makes you want to follow Jesus?

4.      Can you think of a time when you have stepped into the unknown or had to make a courageous decision? What happened?

5.      Try to express in a couple of sentences how Jesus is good news.