16 Passing alongside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew the brother of Simon casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen.
Ordinary men. Not rabbis or learned men. Jesus appeals to everyman.
17And Jesus said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.”
One of my favourite verses! The expression Jesus uses is metaphorical. He often does not speak literally during his earthly ministry. Much of what he says is obscure. He teaches in parables. What he teaches needs wrestling with, pondering, meditating on… for the rest of our lives.
18And immediately they left their nets and followed him.
This is different to the account given in John’s Gospel and Luke. Mark chose to emphasise the immediacy of their response. This for me indicates how very compelling Jesus was to them, that Simon (Peter) and Andrew left their families, livelihood and all they knew to follow Jesus into an unknown future. Mark’s gospel emphasises the power of Jesus and here it is exemplified in the response of Peter and Andrew. If only we could react as decisively and follow Jesus so completely!
19 And going on a little farther, he saw James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, who were in their boat mending the nets. 20 And immediately he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants and followed him.
Mark uses immediately again. This time it is Jesus who acts immediately. His omniscience enables him to choose/know his disciples instantaneously.
Following Jesus will sometimes mean families are divided. There can be a cost. Lives are changed – irrecoverably.