I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business.
Instead, I have called you friends, for everything
that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—
and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.
“In the beginning …” (Genesis 1:1) Father started a manufacturing business (for those into theology it’s called “the Kingdom”!). Every manufacturer has the same MO: MULTIPLICATION. For example, in 2016 Apple sold its one billionth iPhone. McDonald’s sells“more than 75 hamburgers per second, of every minute, of every hour, of every day of the year.” That’s multiplication!
“‘Then God said, ‘Let the land sprout with vegetation—every sort of seed-bearing plant, and trees that grow seed-bearing fruit. These seeds will then PRODUCE the kinds of plants and trees from which they came.’ And that is what happened.'” (Genesis 1:11-12) “Then God said, ‘Let the earth PRODUCE every sort of animal, each PRODUCING offspring of the same kind—livestock, small animals that scurry along the ground, and wild animals.” And that is what happened.‘” (Genesis 1:24-25) Finally, humankind is created. “So God created human beings in his own image, male and female he created them. Then God blessed them and said, ‘BE FRUITFUL AND MULTIPLY. ‘” (Genesis 1:28)
Sometime later a deadly virus caused a massive product defect. (Genesis 3:1-7) The Creator quickly responded with a product recall. (Genesis 3:8-13) To fix the problem Father chose an antiviral drug called GRACE! (Ephesians 2:8) Due to its exorbitant cost, humankind was unable to pay a dime for the medication So, the Father flipped the bill (1 Peter:1:18-20). That’s why John Newton, the hymn composer, wrote:
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
To commence the therapeutic process God began with a trial group, the Jewish race. Nothing special about this group except that Jesus was to come through that hereditary line. Similar to many medications Father began with a small, test dose to prepare for that which was to come. Finally, the Great Physician (Mark 2:17) arrived to deliver the requisite dose.
But it was our sins that ripped and tore and crushed him!
He took the punishment, and that made us whole.
Through his bruises we get healed.
It may appear that I got sidetracked from the subject of multiplication. Not so! “The Gospel is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ.” (Bonhoeffer) Here’s Jesus’ grace-filled call to the disciples to become his business partners!
“When Jesus finished teaching, he said to Peter,
‘Push out into deep water and let your nets out for a catch.’
Peter said, ‘Master, we’ve been fishing hard all night and haven’t caught even a minnow.
But if you say so, I’ll let out the nets.’
It was no sooner said than done—a huge haul of fish, straining the nets past capacity.
They waved to their partners in the other boat to come help them.
They filled both boats, nearly swamping them with the catch.
When they pulled in that catch of fish, awe overwhelmed Peter and everyone with him.
Jesus said to Peter ‘There is nothing to fear.
From now on you’ll be fishing for men and women.'”
They pulled their boats up on the beach, left them, nets and all, and followed him.