Sermonette for Saturday

One of the two which heard John speak, and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. John 1:40

The great symphony conductor Leonard Bernstein was once asked what instrument is the most difficult to play. His answer: ‘Second violin. I can find plenty of first violinists. But to find someone who can play second violin with enthusiasm, that is a problem. And if we have no second violin, we have no harmony.’ It might have been Bernstein, or it might have been C.H. Spurgeon who first recited the pithy ditty: It takes more grace than I can tell to play the second fiddle well. It is a rare person indeed who doesn’t mind somebody else always getting the attention and glory. And yet, in Andrew, we find such a person. Without an Andrew, we would never have a Peter and everything that Peter brought to the ministry of the Lord Jesus. As great as Peter was, as powerful as He became in the early days of Christianity, as essential as Peter’s epistles are to our understanding of God’s instructions to us, none of this would have been possible without an Andrew to bring his brother to the Lord.

Our text has two great lessons for us; the first is this, never belittle the position of second place. Pride would have each of us seeking the forefront, seeking the attention, striving for own own interests and our own advancement. Nobody would have known Peter like his brother Andrew. And yet, knowing that he would have to take second place once Peter showed up, Andrew wasted no time in bringing his brother to the Lord. Like Andrew, we need to push pride back and not to be concerned about the possibility of somebody pushing in ahead of us. Andrew knew what was the most important, not only for himself, but for Peter. And he did not hesitate to step into the role of second fiddle. How thankful we are than he did! And how thankful others might be if we were willing to do the same!

The second lesson we learn is the importance of inviting people to meet the Lord Jesus. Andrew did not hesitate, and he went straight to the most important person in his life, his big brother! What a thrill he must have received in the years to come as he remembered his witness to Peter, as he saw his brother become a great apostle. He had no regrets, as far as his brother was concerned. What about us, have we done all that we could to introduce our brothers and other family members to the Messiah? We won’t know how much blessing will result unless we at least try.

We can all think of some wonderful Andrews that we have known, and appreciate their willingness to play second violin. Maybe it wouldn’t hurt us to try a little harder to play second violin ourselves. -Jim MacIntosh

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