Luke 5:1

1 Once while Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret, and the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God,

Luke 5:1 Meaning and Commentary

Luke 5:1

And it came to pass, that as the people pressed upon him,
&c.] As Christ went through Galilee, and preached in the synagogues there, great crowds of people attended on him, and they followed him wherever he went; and so large were their numbers, and so very eager were they to see him, and hear him, that they were even troublesome to him, and bore hard upon him, and were ready to press him down, though they had no ill design upon him, but only

to hear the word of God;
the scriptures of the Old Testament explained, and the doctrines of the Gospel preached; and which were preached by him, as never were before or since, and in such a manner as were not by the Scribes and Pharisees; and both the matter and manner of his ministry drew a vast concourse of people after him:

he stood by the lake of Gennesaret;
the same with the sea of Chinnereth, ( Numbers 34:11 ) ( Joshua 12:3 ) ( 13:27 ) where the Targums of Onkelos, Jonathan, and the Jerusalem, call it, (rowngd amy) , "the sea of Geausar" or "Gennesaret": and so it is elsewhere called F1, and is the same which is called the sea of Galilee, and of Tiberias, ( John 6:1 ) ( 21:1 ) and is, by other writers F2, as here, called the lake of Gennesaret, and said to be sixteen miles long, and six broad. Josephus says F3, it is forty furlongs broad, and an hundred long. The Jews say F4, that

``the holy, blessed God created seven seas, but chose none of them all, but the sea of Gennesaret.''

And indeed, it was a place chosen by Christ, and honoured, and made famous by him, by his preaching at it, his miracles upon it, and showing himself there after his resurrection.


F1 Targum in Ezek. xxxix. 11. Zohar in Gen. fol. 3. 2. & 17. 2. & in Exod. fol. 52. 4. & 61. 4.
F2 Plin. l. 5. c. 15. Solin, c. 48. Ptolom. l. 5. c. 15.
F3 De Bello Jud. l. 3. c. 18.
F4 Pirke Eliezer, c. 18.

Luke 5:1 In-Context

1 Once while Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret, and the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God,
2 he saw two boats there at the shore of the lake; the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets.
3 He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little way from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat.
4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch."
5 Simon answered, "Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing. Yet if you say so, I will let down the nets."

Footnotes 1

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.