We have earlier followed the life of John until his death in prison, however, we will not return to the time when John was still baptizing in the Jordan.
At this time Jesus, leaving the desert, follows the valley of the river Jordan, passing on to where John baptized. When John again sees him he draws the attention of all around to Jesus saying, “Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.”
Among those who heard were John’s disciples, for some had become so impressed by his person and his teaching that they constantly came to him, sometimes staying for a while with him. Two of then, Andrew and John, hearing these words of John, followed Jesus. They had heard John speak often of the one mightier than he. They had heard of the Voice which spoke at his baptism, and of the Holy Spirit descending upon him. Now they saw him, and they believed on him.
They now desired to hear him speak, so they followed him. Jesus, knowing that they followed him, asked them what they sought. They answered that they wished to know where he dwelt. Do you wonder why? He was appealing to them as no other preacher had, and they wished to sit at his feet and listen. And Jesus, knowing their desire, took them with him, and they stayed with him that day. They were now convinced that Jesus was the Messiah. Could they keep the good news to themselves? These two, who were henceforth his followers, were just like all of us on receiving good news. We feel compelled to tell others.
They both had brothers. Andrew knew that his brother, Simon Peter, had longed as much as he to see Messiah. Now that he had found him he hesitated no longer. Leaving Jesus and John he goes and finds Peter, and brings him back with him.
We are not told that Jesus had ever seen Peter before, but this was not necessary in order that Jesus might know him. Jesus “needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man.” He knew Peter’s rough character at once. He knew that Peter was like a rough stone, which though rough and jagged was strong.
And, as an evidence that he knew him, he told Peter who his father was, for said he, “Simon, son of Jona.” This could not fail to strike Peter. Did Jesus then know him, and his family, though they were strangers? Peter would be ready to say, as Nathanael afterwards said, “Rabbi, thou art the son of God, thou art the King of Israel.”
Excerpt from The Life of Jesus Christ by W.R. Mitchell