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Articles by Bill Brown

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And Jesus, walking by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brothers; Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. Then He said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men." ~ Matthew 4:18-19

Serving as a professor of evangelism and North American church planting involves considerable travel. And my students are not surprised to see me arriving in their town with fly rod in hand. People may think that I love to fish; actually I am doing research. In a previous article I explained how I had learned many truths about sin from fishing, but fishing contains more lessons than just those on sin. After all, everything I need to know about evangelism I learned fishing. Here are several theological insights from my field research.

You have to know what you want to catch and where they are.

I have caught everything from trout the size of minnows to halibut ov...

[A servant of the Lord must be able to teach] so that they may know the truth, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will. ~ 2 Timothy 2:24-26

Most scholars recognize the teaching ability of Jesus and His use of parables. Parables communicate because they use familiar real world occurrences, concrete images, to reveal spiritual truths, abstract realities. In turn, homiletic professors understand the power of illustration in sermon construction. With this in mind, it suddenly struck me that everything I need to know about sin God taught me while fishing. Here are the major points (no pun intended) I learned on the doctrine of hamartiology (sin).

There's no such thing as a small sin.

Over the last five years, I have asked hundreds of people, "In your opinion what is necessary for a person to do to go to heaven when they die?...