Counseling Believers To Catch Men 

Exegetical Counseling Techniques

Luke 5:1-5



Jesus taught His learners how to catch men (Luke 5:1-11). He started by showing His learners how to teach crowds of people and using a boat as a speaking platform. Then Jesus showed the learners the value of obedience and not relying upon their own human understanding. Having provoked their faith in Him to teach them and feed them, Jesus then dispelled their fear by telling them they would be catching men in the future. Jesus was providing exegetical counseling to His learners that would change their lives forever. We can discern seven important exegetical counseling techniques Jesus employed to teach His learners how to catch men. He meant that people would hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ and believe in Him for salvation, becoming learners of Jesus and fishers of people.

Exegetical Counseling Technique One

Help People Listen to the Word of God

As a crowd pressed around Jesus, they were listening to the word of God (Luke 5:1). Exegetical Counseling always means that people must listen to the word of God and obey the word of God to promote spiritual growth and development. Therefore, we must help people listen to the word of God. Notice that Jesus was not speaking in a synagogue, but standing by the Lake of Gennesaret. We must speak to people where we find them and where they find us. Jesus got into a boat to help the people listen to the word of God. You may want to consider using the internet and other public means to help people hear the word of God.

♦ Jesus spoke to people in many locations.

♦ Jesus taught people the word of God.

♦ Jesus got into a boat to help everyone hear Him teaching the word of God.


Exegetical Counseling Technique Two

Jesus Still Teaches People the Word of God

Learning about Jesus means listening to Jesus (Luke 5:2-3). Because Jesus lives as the Resurrected Savior today, He continues His teaching ministry. He often uses His learners to proclaim the word of God. Therefore, we must be very careful to remember that Jesus still seeks to teach the crowds about Himself, His Father, and the Holy Spirit. When we submit ourselves to loving others by helping them hear the teachings of Jesus found in the Bible, then we truly fulfill our service to Jesus our Lord. This counseling technique requires careful understanding of how Jesus works today and continues His teaching ministry through His learners who faithfully proclaim His truths.

♦ Jesus continues His teaching ministry today.

♦ Jesus seeks learners who will teach everyone all that He commanded in the Bible. 

♦ Jesus calls His learners to spread His love to everyone so that they may believe in Jesus and learn from Him.

Exegetical Counseling Technique Three

Promote Faith and Obedience to Jesus

Jesus commanded Simon to go into deep water and let down the net (Luke 5:4-5). Although Simon and his fellow-fishermen had fished all night and caught nothing, they obeyed the command of Jesus. This counseling technique means that Jesus used His supernatural knowledge to promote obedience and trust in Him to provide for the needs of the learners and others. By faith leading to obedience to Jesus without hesitation or doubt, we will have an abundance not only for ourselves, but also more to share with others. The learners of Jesus must have great faith in Jesus and promote immediate obedience to Jesus, even when His command may not make sense to us at the time. Jesus knows how we can catch fish for Him.

♦ Jesus ordered His learners to fish at His command. 

♦ Jesus knew the learners already had fished all night and caught nothing.

♦ Jesus always knows where the fish are and how to catch them.

Exegetical Counseling Technique Four

Jesus Rewards Obedience to God

At the command of Jesus, the learners obeyed Jesus and caught two boat-loads of fish (Luke 5:6-7). Because Jesus always knows where the fish are and how to catch them, Jesus teaches us that He rewards our obedience to God. Jesus has always been God, Jesus is God, and will always be God. In the past, Jesus took flesh and walked among humans, but He was always God. We should always obey God. After death on the cross, Jesus was raised from the dead and ascended to God the Father in heaven. Jesus lives eternally and rewards obedience to God. The rewards include catching boat-loads of fish at the command of  Jesus.

♦ Jesus rewards obedience to God.

♦ Jesus wants His learners to believe He will reward them for their immediate obedience to God.

♦ Jesus wants His learners to catch boat-loads of fish for Him.

Exegetical Counseling Technique Five

Jesus Makes Catching Fish a Team Experience

With faith and obedience in the command of Jesus, the learners of Jesus caught two boat-loads of fish (Luke 5:7). Jesus loves to use teams of learners to catch fish. They catch more fish in more places by working as a team under the command of Jesus. The world has many fish, and Jesus sends teams of His learners into the world to catch those fish. He loves the fish and knows exactly where they are. His teams always will find them and catch them. Those new fish become fishers of men as they love and obey Jesus.

♦ Jesus uses teams of learners to catch fish. 

♦ Jesus commands His teams to work together to catch fish. 

♦ Jesus intends for every one of His learners to fish on one of His teams, but all teams of Jesus work in perfect harmony when they obey the loving commands of Jesus and fish according to His plans.

Exegetical Counseling Technique Six

Catching Fish Requires Obedience to God above All Your Experience

Jesus knows everything about everywhere (Luke 5:8). The learners of Jesus fished all night and caught nothing. Without Jesus, they caught nothing. Catching fish requires that we do not lean on our own understanding and we put aside our own experience about catching fish. We must remember that Jesus directs us to the fish and how to catch them. We catch people by following the leading of Jesus. We have faith in Him and we listen to Him. We no longer fish according to our experience and skills. By following the commands of Jesus about fishing for people, we will always find the fish He intends for us to catch that day.

♦ Jesus knows all things about all fish and everything else.

♦ Jesus does not rely upon our knowledge and experience.

♦ Jesus commands us to trust His perfect knowledge and leading to catch fish.

Exegetical Counseling Technique Seven

Jesus Overcomes Fear as Believers Follow Him

Jesus overcomes our fears (Luke 5:10-11). When Peter saw two boat-loads of fish, he feared Jesus and His great power. Peter instantly understood that Jesus caught the fish. Peter also knew that without Jesus, the fishermen would have not a single fish. They had fished all night and caught nothing. Jesus overcame the fear of Peter by showing Peter how to catch fish. Peter must simply fish according to the commands of Jesus. Only by listening to Jesus and doing what Jesus says will the learners of Jesus catch fish. Jesus overcame the fear of Peter, but Peter gained insight into the power of God working in Jesus. As believers in Jesus, we must learn to fear Jesus, but we also know His love never fails. Jesus told Peter not to fear, because from then on, Peter would be catching people. Jesus meant that He would change Peter from a man who caught fish into a slave of Jesus who would catch people for salvation by the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. When we fish at the command of Jesus, we leave everything and follow Him.

♦ Jesus demonstrated His divine power and knowledge about catching fish.

♦ Jesus understood how to overcome the fear of people as they watched the power of Jesus in action.

♦ Jesus overcomes the fears of believers by sending them out to fish for people the rest of their lives, having left everything else behind.



Jesus loves to make fish into people who will catch fish for Him. Jesus loves people and provided the only means of salvation by faith in Him alone. After being born-again in Jesus, we follow His commands to catch fish. Jesus leads us to the fish because He knows all fish. Have you left everything behind so that you can devote yourself to catching people for Jesus today?