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Matthew 4:18 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— And walking by the sea of Galilee, he saw two brethren, Simon who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishers.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Now as Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon who was called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— And walking by the sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishers;
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— And, walking round beside the sea of Galilee, he saw two brethren—Simon who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother,—casting a large fishing-net into the sea, for they were fishers;
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brothers, Simon named Peter and Andrew his brother, casting a drag into the sea—for they were fishers—
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— And Jesus walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea (for they were fishers).
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— And Iesus walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon, called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the Sea (for they were fishers)
John Etheridge Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1849)
— And while he walked by the sea of Galila, he saw two brethren, Shemun who was called Kipha, and Andreas his brother, who were casting their nets into the sea, for they were fishers.
James Murdock Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1852)
— And as he walked on the shore of the sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Cephas, and Andrew his brother, who were casting nets into the sea; for they were fishermen.

Strong's Numbers & Red-LettersGreek New TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
And 1161
{1161} Prime
A primary particle (adversative or continuative); but, and, etc.
Jesus, 2424
{2424} Prime
Of Hebrew origin [H3091]; Jesus (that is, Jehoshua), the name of our Lord and two (three) other Israelites.
walking 4043
{4043} Prime
From G4012 and G3961; to tread all around, that is, walk at large (especially as proof of ability); figuratively to live, deport oneself, follow (as a companion or votary).
<5723> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 2549
by 3844
{3844} Prime
A primary preposition; properly near, that is, (with genitive case) from beside (literally or figuratively), (with dative case) at (or in) the vicinity of (objectively or subjectively), (with accusative case) to the proximity with (local [especially beyond or opposed to] or causal [on account of]). In compounds it retains the same variety of application.
the x3588
(3588) Complement

The masculine, feminine (second) and neuter (third) forms, in all their inflections; the definite article; the (sometimes to be supplied, at others omitted, in English idiom).
sea 2281
{2281} Prime
Probably prolonged from G0251; the sea (generally or specifically).
of Galilee, 1056
{1056} Prime
Of hebrew origin [H1551]; Galilaea (that is, the heathen circle), a region of Palestine.
saw 1492
{1492} Prime
A primary verb; used only in certain past tenses, the others being borrowed from the equivalent, G3700 and G3708; properly to see (literally or figuratively); by implication (in the perfect only) to know.
<5627> Grammar
Tense - Second Aorist (See G5780)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 2138 plus 1 in a variant reading in a footnote
two 1417
{1417} Prime
A primary numeral; 'two'.
brethren, 80
{0080} Prime
From G0001 (as a connective particle) and δελφύς [[delphus]] (the womb); a brother (literally or figuratively) near or remote (much like [H0001]).
Simon 4613
{4613} Prime
Of Hebrew origin [H8095]; Simon (that is, Shimon), the name of nine Israelites.
called 3004
{3004} Prime
A primary verb; properly to 'lay' forth, that is, (figuratively) relate (in words [usually of systematic or set discourse; whereas G2036 and G5346 generally refer to an individual expression or speech respectively; while G4483 is properly to break silence merely, and G2980 means an extended or random harangue]); by implication to mean.
<5746> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Passive (See G5786)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 360
Peter, 4074
{4074} Prime
Apparently a primary word; a (piece of) rock (larger than G3037); as a name, Petrus, an apostle.
and 2532
{2532} Prime
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
Andrew 406
{0406} Prime
From G0435; manly; Andreas, an Israelite.
his 846
{0846} Prime
From the particle αὖ [[au]] (perhaps akin to the base of G0109 through the idea of a baffling wind; backward); the reflexive pronoun self, used (alone or in the compound of G1438) of the third person, and (with the proper personal pronoun) of the other persons.
brother, 80
{0080} Prime
From G0001 (as a connective particle) and δελφύς [[delphus]] (the womb); a brother (literally or figuratively) near or remote (much like [H0001]).
casting 906
{0906} Prime
A primary verb; to throw (in various applications, more or less violent or intense).
<5723> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 2549
a net 293
{0293} Prime
From a compound of the base of G0297 and G0906; a (fishing) net (as thrown about the fish).
into 1519
{1519} Prime
A primary preposition; to or into (indicating the point reached or entered), of place, time, or (figuratively) purpose (result, etc.); also in adverbial phrases.
the x3588
(3588) Complement

The masculine, feminine (second) and neuter (third) forms, in all their inflections; the definite article; the (sometimes to be supplied, at others omitted, in English idiom).
sea: 2281
{2281} Prime
Probably prolonged from G0251; the sea (generally or specifically).
for 1063
{1063} Prime
A primary particle; properly assigning a reason (used in argument, explanation or intensification; often with other particles).
they were 2258
{2258} Prime
Imperfect of G1510; I (thou, etc.) was (wast or were).
<5713> Grammar
Tense - Imperfect (See G5775)
Voice - No Voice Stated (See G5799)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 532
fishers. 231
{0231} Prime
From G0251; a sailor (as engaged on the salt water), that is, (by implication) a fisher.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Matthew 4:18

_ _ Matthew 4:18-22. Calling of Peter and Andrew, James and John.

_ _ And Jesus, walking — The word “Jesus” here appears not to belong to the text, but to have been introduced from those portions of it which were transcribed to be used as church lessons; where it was naturally introduced as a connecting word at the commencement of a lesson.

_ _ by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishers — “called Peter” for the reason mentioned in Matthew 16:18.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Matthew 4:18-22

_ _ When Christ began to preach, he began to gather disciples, who should now be the hearers, and hereafter the preachers, of his doctrine, who should now be witnesses of his miracles, and hereafter concerning them. Now, in these verses, we have an account of the first disciples that he called into fellowship with himself.

_ _ And this was an instance, 1. Of effectual calling to Christ. In all his preaching he gave a common call to all the country, but in this he gave a special and particular call to those that were given him by the Father. Let us see and admire the power of Christ's grace, own his word to be the rod of his strength, and wait upon him for those powerful influences which are necessary to the efficacy of the gospel call — those distinguishing influences. All the country was called, but these were called out, were redeemed from among them. Christ was so manifested to them, as he was not manifested unto the world. 2. It was an instance of ordination, and appointment to the work of the ministry. When Christ, as a Teacher, set up his great school, one of his first works was to appoint ushers, or under masters, to be employed in the work of instruction. Now he began to give gifts unto men, to put the treasure into earthen vessels. It was an early instance of his care for the church.

_ _ Now we may observe here,

_ _ I. Where they were called — by the sea of Galilee, where Jesus was walking, Capernaum being situated near that sea. Concerning this sea of Tiberias, the Jews have a saying, That of all the seven seas that God made, he made choice of none but the sea of Gennesaret; which is very applicable to Christ's choice of it, to honour it, as he often did, with his presence and his miracles. Here, on the banks of the sea, Christ was walking for contemplation, as Isaac in the field; hither he went to call his disciples; not to Herod's court (for few mighty or noble are called), not to Jerusalem, among the chief priests and the elders, but to the sea of Galilee; surely Christ sees not as man sees. Not but that the same power which effectually called Peter and Andrew would have wrought upon Annas and Caiaphas, for with God nothing is impossible; but, as in other things, so in his converse and attendance, he would humble himself, and show that God ha chosen the poor of this world. Galilee was a remote part of the nation, the inhabitants were less cultivated and refined, their very language was broad and uncouth to the curious, their speech betrayed them. They who were picked up at the sea of Galilee, had not the advantages and improvements, no, not of the more polished Galileans; yet thither Christ went, to call his apostles that were to be the prime ministers of state in his kingdom, for he chooses the foolish things of this world, to confound the wise.

_ _ II. Who they were. We have an account of the call of two pair of brothers in these verses — Peter and Andrew, James and John; the two former, and, probably, the two latter also, had had acquaintance with Christ before (John 1:40, John 1:41), but were not till now called into a close and constant attendance upon him. Note, Christ brings poor souls by degrees into fellowship with himself. They had been disciples of John, and so were the better disposed to follow Christ. Note, Those who have submitted to the discipline of repentance, shall be welcome to the joys of faith. We may observe concerning them,

_ _ 1. That they were brothers. Note, It is a blessed thing, when they who are kinsmen according to the flesh (as the apostle speaks, Romans 9:3), are brought together into a spiritual alliance to Jesus Christ. It is the honour and comfort of a house, when those that are of the same family, are of God's family.

_ _ 2. That they were fishers. Being fishers, (1.) They were poor men: if they had had estates, or any considerable stock in trade, they would not have made fishing their trade, however, they might have made it their recreation. Note, Christ does not despise the poor, and therefore we must not; the poor are evangelized, and the Fountain of honour sometimes gives more abundant honour to that part which most lacked. (2.) The were unlearned men, not bred up to books or literature as Moses was, who was conversant with all the learning of the Egyptians. Note, Christ sometimes chooses to endow those with the gifts of grace who have least to show of the gifts of nature. Yet this will not justify the bold intrusion of ignorant and unqualified men into the work of the ministry: extraordinary gifts of knowledge and utterance are not now to be expected, but requisite abilities must be obtained in an ordinary way, and without a competent measure of these, none are to be admitted to that service. (3.) They were men of business, who had been bred up to labour. Note, Diligence in an honest calling is pleasing to Christ, and no hindrance to a holy life. Moses was called from keeping sheep, and David from following the ewes, to eminent employments. Idle people lie more open to the temptations of Satan than to the calls of God. (4.) They were men that were accustomed to hardships and hazards; the fisher's trade, more than any other, is laborious and perilous; fishermen must be often wet and cold; they must watch, and wait, and toil, and be often in perils by waters. Note, Those who have learned to bear hardships, and run hazards, are best prepared for the fellowship and discipleship of Jesus Christ. Good soldiers of Christ must endure hardness.

_ _ III. What they were doing. Peter and Andrew were then using their nets, they were fishing; and James and John were mending their nets, which was an instance of their industry and good husbandry. They did not go to their father for money to buy new nets, but took pains to mend their old ones. It is commendable to make what we have go as far, and last as long, as may be. James and John were with their father Zebedee, ready to assist him, and make his business easy to him. Note, It is a happy and hopeful presage, to see children careful of their parents, and dutiful to them. Observe, 1. They were all employed, all very busy, and none idle. Note, When Christ comes, it is good to be found doing. “Am I in Christ?” is a very needful question for us to ask ourselves; and, next to that, “Am I in my calling?” 2. They were differently employed; two of them were fishing, and two of them mending their nets. Note, Ministers should be always employed, either in teaching or studying; they may always find themselves something to do, if it be not their own fault; and mending their nets, is, in its season, as necessary work as fishing.

_ _ IV. What the call was (Matthew 4:19); Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. They had followed Christ before, as ordinary disciples (John 1:37), but so they might follow Christ, and follow their calling too; therefore they were called to a more close and constant attendance, and must leave their calling. Note, Even they who had been called to follow Christ, have need to be called to follow on, and to follow nearer, especially when they are designed for the work of the ministry. Observe,

_ _ 1. What Christ intended them for; I will make you fishers of men; this alludes to their former calling. Let them be not proud of the new honour designed them, they are still but fishers; let them not be afraid of the new work cut out for them, for they have been used to fishing, and fishers they are still. It was usual with Christ to speak of spiritual and heavenly things under such allusions, and in such expressions, as took rise from common things that offered themselves to his view. David was called from feeding sheep to feed God's Israel; and when he is a king, is a shepherd. Note, (1.) Ministers are fishers of men, not to destroy them, but to save them, by bringing them into another element. They must fish, not for wrath, wealth, honour, and preferment, to gain them to themselves, but for souls, to gain them to Christ. They watch for your souls (Hebrews 13:17), and seek not yours, but you, 2 Corinthians 12:14, 2 Corinthians 12:16. (2.) It is Jesus Christ that makes them so; I will make you fishers of men. It is he that qualifies men for this work, calls them to it, authorizes them in it, gives them commission to fish for souls, and wisdom to win them. Those ministers are likely to have comfort in their work, who are thus made by Jesus Christ.

_ _ 2. What they must do in order to this; Follow me. They must separate themselves to a diligent attendance on him, and set themselves to a humble imitation of him; must follow him as their Leader. Note, (1.) Those whom Christ employs in any service for him, must first be fitted and qualified for it. (2.) Those who would preach Christ, must first learn Christ, and learn of him. How can we expect to bring others to the knowledge of Christ, if we do not know him well ourselves? (3.) Those who would get an acquaintance with Christ, must be diligent and constant in their attendance on him. The apostles were prepared for their work, by accompanying Christ all the time that he went in and out among them, Acts 1:21. There is no learning comparable to that which is got by following Christ. Joshua, by ministering to Moses, is fitted to be his successor. (4.) Those who are to fish for men, must therein follow Christ, and do it as he did, with diligence, faithfulness, and tenderness. Christ is the great pattern for preachers, and they ought to be workers together with him.

_ _ V. What was the success of this call. Peter and Andrew straightway left their nets (Matthew 4:20); and James and John immediately left the ship and their father (v. 22); and they all followed him. Note, Those who would follow Christ aright, must leave all to follow him. Every Christian must leave all in affection, set loose to all, must hate father and mother (Luke 14:26), must love them less than Christ, must be ready to part with his interest in them rather than with his interest in Jesus Christ; but those who are devoted to the work of the ministry are, in a special manner, concerned to disentangle themselves from all the affairs of this life, that they may give themselves wholly to that work which requires the whole man. Now,

_ _ 1. This instance of the power of the Lord Jesus gives us good encouragement to depend upon the sufficiency of his grace. How strong and effectual is his word! He speaks, and it is done. The same power goes along with this word of Christ, Follow me, that went along with that word, Lazarus, come forth; a power to make willing, Psalms 110:3.

_ _ 2. This instance of the pliableness of the disciples, gives us a good example of obedience to the command of Christ. Note, It is the good property of all Christ's faithful servants to come when they are called, and to follow their Master wherever he leads them. They objected not their present employments, their engagements to their families, the difficulties of the service they were called to, or their own unfitness for it; but, being called, they obeyed, and, like Abraham, went out not knowing whither they went, but knowing very well whom they followed. James and John left their father: it is not said what became of him; their mother Salome was a constant follower of Christ; no doubt, their father Zebedee was a believer, but the call to follow Christ fastened on the young ones. Youth is the learning age, and the labouring age. The priests ministered in the prime of their life.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Matthew 4:18

Mark 1:16; Luke 5:1.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Matthew 4:18

(3) And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.

(3) Christ, thinking that he would eventually depart from us, even at the beginning of his preaching gets himself disciples of a heavenly sort, poor and unlearned, and therefore such as might be left as honest witnesses of the truth of those things which they heard and saw.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance

Matthew 1:16-18 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ. ... Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.
Luke 5:2 And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing [their] nets.


Matthew 15:29 And Jesus departed from thence, and came nigh unto the sea of Galilee; and went up into a mountain, and sat down there.
Numbers 34:11 And the coast shall go down from Shepham to Riblah, on the east side of Ain; and the border shall descend, and shall reach unto the side of the sea of Chinnereth eastward:
Deuteronomy 3:17 The plain also, and Jordan, and the coast [thereof], from Chinnereth even unto the sea of the plain, [even] the salt sea, under Ashdothpisgah eastward.
, Chinnereth,
Luke 5:1 And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,
, lake of Gennesaret,
John 6:1 After these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is [the sea] of Tiberias.
John 21:1 After these things Jesus shewed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise shewed he [himself].
, sea of Tiberias


Matthew 10:2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James [the son] of Zebedee, and John his brother;
Luke 6:14 Simon, (whom he also named Peter,) and Andrew his brother, James and John, Philip and Bartholomew,
John 1:40-42 One of the two which heard John [speak], and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. ... And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone.
John 6:8 One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, saith unto him,


Exodus 3:1 Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, [even] to Horeb.
Exodus 3:10 Come now therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt.
Judges 6:11-12 And there came an angel of the LORD, and sat under an oak which [was] in Ophrah, that [pertained] unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide [it] from the Midianites. ... And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him, and said unto him, The LORD [is] with thee, thou mighty man of valour.
1 Kings 19:19-21 So he departed thence, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who [was] plowing [with] twelve yoke [of oxen] before him, and he with the twelfth: and Elijah passed by him, and cast his mantle upon him. ... And he returned back from him, and took a yoke of oxen, and slew them, and boiled their flesh with the instruments of the oxen, and gave unto the people, and they did eat. Then he arose, and went after Elijah, and ministered unto him.
Psalms 78:70-72 He chose David also his servant, and took him from the sheepfolds: ... So he fed them according to the integrity of his heart; and guided them by the skilfulness of his hands.
Amos 7:14-15 Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I [was] no prophet, neither [was] I a prophet's son; but I [was] an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit: ... And the LORD took me as I followed the flock, and the LORD said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel.
1 Corinthians 1:27-29 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; ... That no flesh should glory in his presence.
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Chain-Reference Bible Search

Ex 3:1, 10. Nu 34:11. Dt 3:17. Jg 6:11. 1K 19:19. Ps 78:70. Am 7:14. Mt 1:16; 10:2; 15:29. Lk 5:1, 2; 6:14. Jn 1:40; 6:1, 8; 21:1. 1Co 1:27.

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