Today’s Reading: Matthew 4:18-25
18 As he walked by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 19 And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 Immediately they left their nets and followed him. 21 And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets, and he called them. 22 Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed him.
23 And he went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every infirmity among the people. 24 So his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, demoniacs, epileptics, and paralytics, and he healed them. 25 And great crowds followed him from Galilee and the Decapolis and Jerusalem and Judea and from beyond the Jordan.
Fishermen: A common Galilean occupation. Matthew emphasizes the promptness of the disciples’ response to Jesus (Immediately 4:20, 22). Three of them – Peter, James, and John – enjoyed a special relationship with him (17:1; 26:37). God’s New Covenant grace builds upon, perfects, and elevates our human nature. The natural skills of these fishermen are thus raised to a new and spiritual level by grace, enabling them to gather souls for the kingdom as missionaries in the Church.