Fishers, fishing and analogies

January 1, 0001

Fishing can be a great analogy for evangelism–or a very bad one.Jesus promised to make Peter into a “fisher of men,” and it’s a great illustration insofar as it goes.

For example, note a lesson my kids and I learned on a recent expedition: to catch fish requires being in the right place, at the right time, with the right lure, the right skill, and plenty of patience.

You can have dozens of lures, plenty of skill, and a mountain of patience–but if you’re in the wrong place and the wrong time, you won’t catch anything, and it won’t be your fault.

In the same way, evangelism and disciple-making require your work, and God’s.

But stretch the analogy too far, and it breaks.

After all, what’s in it for the fish? Caught fish end up on plates.

In fact, really, the “fishing” analogy only works as a redemptive analogy if the fish are being transformed into fishermen (and women)–changedĀ from something old into something new.