Man Declines Lotto Winnings

Luke 5:1-11 1 One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, with the people crowding around him and listening to the word of God, 2 he saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. 3 He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat. 4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” 5 Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”  6 When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7 So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.  8 When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” 9 For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, 10 and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners.   Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will catch men.” 11 So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

This is quite the scene in Luke 5.  Jesus walks up to a complete stranger, a fisherman by the name of Simon.  Simon is minding his own business, cleaning up his boat after a futile night of fishing.  All of a sudden this dude gets in his boat and says, “push out a little from shore, will ya? I am going to teach these people that followed me here.”

I wonder what Simon was thinking.  It was like a Rabbi commandeer; he took over Simon’s vehicle for his service.  Simon was now stuck in his boat, forced to listen to the message of Jesus.   Afterward, Jesus the teacher is going to teach Simon the fisherman how to fish.  The catch is enormous – in fact, it almost sank two boats.  These weren’t little row boats, they were fishing boats!  At this point, Simon freaks out and realizes that this is some kind of miracle man.  Jesus makes a prophetic statement about Simon’s future and let’s it sit at that.

Then it happens, verse 11.  They left everything and followed Jesus.  What about the fish?  What about the bountiful catch?  That would be like winning the lottery and not claiming the cash.  I can see the headline now: “Man declines lotto winnings.”  It says that they left it all behind.  I think that Simon figured out rather quickly that this man was more important than the cash.  He wanted to follow the man, not hoard the miracle.  

What would happen if our life response was like that of Simon?  We so desperately want the miracle, the blessings, and the stuff.  But Simon really got it – it wasn’t the stuff, it was the person.  It is the person of Jesus that will bring provision and life.  It is the person of Jesus that our hearts should be after.  He is my treasure and there my heart will be also.  

One thought on “Man Declines Lotto Winnings

  1. wow!!!!! i so agree.. I actually am good at this stuff is not important stuff and when I try to tell anyone especially my family that I don’t need these things to be happy…they do not understand. I am not loving the Lord for His blessings.. yes they are nice and I appreciate them, but we need to live for God not what He can do for us! How less important all that stuff would be if we could wrap around the fact that God is soooo much more important!

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