John 21:1-19

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All the Gospels together tell that the disciples saw Jesus after His resurrection for 40 days until He ascended. John is the only Gospel to record this particular story.

Seven of the disciples are basically hanging out when Peter, who is probably bored, decides he’s going fishing. This is a great idea so everyone says they’ll go too. They’ve been following Jesus for a long time. Now they are at a loss for what to do with themselves. So they fished all night.

Just as day was breaking, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to them, “Children, do you have any fish?” They answered him, “No.” He said to them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in, because of the quantity of fish.

It’s John who put two and two together – “It’s the Lord!” And it’s Peter who throws on his shirt and jumps in the water so he can get to Him the fastest. In spite of his having disappointed Jesus, Peter does not hold back in approaching Him. (I might be a little hesitant or self-concerned after such a failing but – that would about me because Jesus forgives and that’s that.)

Jesus has a fire going; He’s already cooking breakfast but asks for some of the fish they have caught – “153 large fish and the net didn’t break.” (Without Jesus – 0, with Jesus – 153 — I’m just sayin’.) The scene is a little like the last supper. Jesus is acting as the servant. These disciples had no doubt it was Him – which implies they were getting comfortable with seeing Him this way.

When breakfast was over Jesus approached Peter. Three times Jesus asks “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” (Three times – the same as the number of times Peter denied knowing Him.) And three times Peter answers “Yes, Lord; You know that I love you.”

After each answer Jesus tells Peter to “Feed my sheep”, “Tend my sheep”, and “Feed my sheep”. Peter may have been floundering but now Jesus is giving him a specific new life’s work. Jesus has just appointed him a Shepherd of his flock. He goes on to tell him by laying down running his own life he will bring glory to God. (I think Jesus wanted him to know though it might be difficult, his life was going to glorify God – guaranteed!)

Peter must be wondering if he can live up to this. He had denied Jesus before. Maybe he was worried but clearly Jesus was not. His directive for success was simple: “Follow Me.”

About God?
God is intimate in His calling for each of His followers.

About Me?
“Follow Me.” ~ Jesus

About the World?
With Jesus, 153 to nothing!


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