At dawn Jesus was standing on the beach, but the disciples couldn’t see who he was. He called out, “Fellows, have you caught any fish?”
“No,” they replied.Then he said, “Throw out your net on the right-hand side of the boat, and you’ll get some!” So they did, and they couldn’t haul in the net because there were so many fish in it. John 21: 4-6
As far as we know, and aside from the ascension, this is Jesus's final time hanging out with the men who had become his close friends and companions for three years. To them, their friend and savior died on the cross and has now been resurrected! They've all seen Him, talked with Him, but still they have no idea what to do. They don't know where to go from here.
Have you ever felt like that? You've met Jesus, spoken with Him, followed Him, but in your day to day life you don't know what else to do but what you've always done. You don't see that anything has really changed.
So what did the disciples do? They went back to what they knew before Jesus. They went fishing!
But something had changed. And they would never be the same. Jesus showed up again and turned their ordinary fishing expedition into a catch so abundant they couldn't haul in the net! Part of me wonders if Jesus wasn't showing them right then and there how many people they would catch and bring to a saving knowledge of Him. More than they could believe! More than they could haul in!
Yes, indeed, their lives had changed. They would never be the same. They would never be ordinary fishermen again. And neither will you. But the choice is yours. You may think you're just an ordinary smoe. leading an ordinary life, with ordinary skills and talents. You may even think that you're not sure you're up to the adventurous, abundant life Jesus offers. You may be worried what He'll ask of you. You may think you're not dedicated enough, brave enough, or maybe, that honestly, you're not sure you love Jesus enough to sacrifice everything.
After breakfast Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”
“Yes, Lord,” Peter replied, “you know I love you.”
“Then feed my lambs,” Jesus told him.
Jesus repeated the question: “Simon son of John, do you love me?”
“Yes, Lord,” Peter said, “you know I love you.”
“Then take care of my sheep,” Jesus said.
A third time he asked him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”
Peter was hurt that Jesus asked the question a third time. He said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.”Jesus said, “Then feed my sheep. John 21: 15-17
Jesus asked Peter if he loved Him three times. The first two times He used the Greek word for love, Agape, which is an unconditional, self-sacrificing, all-encompassing love which is completely independent of the actions or character of the one being loved. It is the way God loves us.
All three times when Peter answers. Yes, I love you.. but he used the Greek word Philia which means brotherly love, the strong bond of friendship. In other words, Peter cannot lie to Jesus. He is not sure he loves Jesus with agape love. All he can offer is Philia love.
And He does the same for us! All He asks is that we follow Him. Bring all your worries, fears, inhibitions, lack of dedication, lack of love, lack of faith and doubts to Him. He understands how weak we are. He will meet you where you're at! He only asks for honesty and a heart that truly wants to follow Him. Then watch what He will do with what you give Him!
Peter became the leader of the Christian church in Jerusalem!