Mar 9, 2016
He stood tall, burly, and hot-headed, an uneducated common man, a seasoned fisherman from Bethsaida, a town on the Sea of Galilee, and using human logic, hardly the one suited for ministry. The fifteenth-century Florentine painter Masaccio depicts him with a full head of curly hair, furrowed brow, daring eyes, straight nose a la Fiorentina, and a well-trimmed beard. You wouldn't want to mess with him. So, what was Jesus thinking when he signaled, "You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church?" Would you have chosen Peter to lead the Twelve?
Profile of First-Century Fishermen
It was essential that Galilean fishermen be physically fit to manage their livelihood. Theirs was the daily grind of long hours that confronted the unforgiving elements of nature: heat, wind and rain, and turbulent storms. Sea monsters could surprise fishermen by capsizing their boats, and the fishermen were no match for them. The all-encompassing watchword for danger? Alertness at all times.
Boats, nets, sails, and ropes had to be kept in good working order. Each time the boat set sail, food and a supply of dry clothes had to be placed on board. For fishermen and their families, there was no other livelihood except plying their trade until they were no longer able to do so.