September 28, 2020

Brothers and Sisters, (Matthew 4:18-22)  And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.  And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.  And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.  And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.  And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him. Have you ever wondered about some of the men and women you read about in the Bible and what their lives must have been like?  I’ve always thought that there must have been something special about them for God to include their names in His Word.  Many people are only mentioned once and it is often in a genealogy.  They are identified as the “father of _____” or “they begat ______”.  One lesser known man is mentioned only 11 times in the Gospels and he is always named in association with his sons.  This man’s name is Zebedee and he is mentioned as the father of James and John. Zebedee was a fisherman by trade and must have lived along the shores of Galilee because the first time we see him mentioned is here in Matthew.  Zebedee was in a ship mending his nets along with his two sons, James and John.  Jesus had just called Simon and his brother Andrew to follow him and he would make them fishers of men and they straightway left their nets and followed Jesus.  Now as they passed by Zebedee’s ship, Jesus calls out to James and John and they too immediately left their ship and their father to follow Jesus. Although there is no mention of Zebedee following Jesus in the scriptures, don’t you think his influence on his two sons is seen in the fact that they were willing to leave all and follow after the Lord.  While Zebedee’s name is seldom mentioned in the scriptures, the names of James and John are mentioned throughout the New Testament and we know that these two men were faithful right up until the very end of their lives. Another less mentioned name in the Bible is Salome.  She is the wife of Zebedee and the mother of James and John.  Like most mothers, she was jealous of her children and even asked Jesus to give them a special place when He came into His kingdom.  (Matthew 20:20-21)  Then came to him the mother of Zebedee’s children with her sons, worshipping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.  And he said unto her, What wilt thou? She saith unto him, Grant that these my two sons may sit, the one on thy right hand, and the other on the left, in thy kingdom. Zebedee and Salome accomplished what every Christian father and mother should aspire to achieve in life.  They raised their children to follow Christ.  I find myself praying every day for my two boys and their families that they would follow Jesus and serve Him all the days of their lives and that my grandchildren will grow up in a Christian home where they can learn about the Lord and give their life to him at an early age. The greatest joy we can ever have as parents is to see our children walking with Jesus and serving Him.  Not just when they are at home under our care, but even after they are grown and leave home to start their own families. My dad used to have a saying, “Don’t do as I do, do as I say”.  This is not true.  No matter what we say, it’s our actions that reveal who we really are and what we truly believe.  When we’re fully committed to Christ in our daily life, our children will see and hopefully they will have a desire to follow Him as well. 
Bro. Rick

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