Let’s read Mark 1:16-17, “Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men.” 

“They were fishers.”  It is wonderful how the Lord used language that could be understood by the ones to which he was talking.  Simon (Peter) and Andrew were fishermen.  They knew how to catch fish.  In order to be successful in their business, it required a good knowledge of how, when, and where to cast their nets to bring in the biggest catches of fish.  Using their vernacular, the Lord called these fishermen to follow Him and continue to be fishermen, not of fish, but of men.  James and John were also fishermen (Mark 1:19-20), who received a call from the Lord to follow Him and become fishers of men.  Thomas and Nathanael also seemed to be fishermen according to what we read in John 21:2-3. 

I encourage you to read John 1:35-42, which is the account of when these two men first met the Lord Jesus.  It was Andrew who first heard and believed on the Lord Jesus, then he brought his brother, Simon, to hear him.  Therefore, what we have in Mark 1:16-17 is not a CALL TO SALVATION, it is a CALL TO DISCIPLESHIP, a call to service.  Salvation is the first step for it is in putting our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ that we are saved and have been made the ‘sons of God’ (John 1:12).  After salvation, the Lord calls us to follow Him so that we might serve Him.  Our ability to truly serve the Lord is dependent upon our following the Lord.  We must follow Him to allow Him to direct us in service to Himself. 

To become a fisher of men is to seek to win precious souls to Christ.  This describes the gift of the evangelist.  The word ‘evangelist’ literally means to be a preacher of the Gospel.  Does everyone have the gift of evangelism?  No, it is a gift from the Lord and not everyone has that particular gift.  BUT, we all have this exhortation from 2 Timothy 4:5 to, “…do the work of an evangelist.”  All who are saved are called to share the Gospel with all who are not saved. 

We read in 1 Corinthians 1:21 that, “…it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.”  What seems foolish to the world is this precious Gospel message that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.” (1 Timothy 1:15).  It is through this “foolish” message that God saves souls.  The Lord gives us the privilege and responsibility to take this wonderful Gospel message to the uttermost parts of the world.  Romans 1:16 tells us that the Gospel of Christ is, “…the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth…” 

Has the Lord saved you?  If He has, He has also called you into service to Himself.  Ephesians 2:10 tells us, “For we are his workmanship, CREATED IN CHRIST JESUS UNTO GOOD WORKS, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”  As new creatures in Christ, we have been called to work for the Lord in whatever capacity He has called us into.  No matter what the Lord has called you to do, He has also called you to “do the work of an evangelist.”  He has called you to be a “fisher of men!”  (424.6)