John 21:1-14

1 After these things Jesus showed Himself again to the disciples at the Sea of Tiberias, and in this way He showed Himself:

2 Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two others of His disciples were together.

3 Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.”They said to him, “We are going with you also.” They went out and immediately got into the boat, and that night they caught nothing.

4 But when the morning had now come, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus.

5 Then Jesus said to them, “Children, have you any food?”They answered Him, “No.”

6 And He said to them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast, and now they were not able to draw it in because of the multitude of fish.

7 Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his outer garment (for he had removed it), and plunged into the sea.

8 But the other disciples came in the little boat (for they were not far from land, but about two hundred cubits), dragging the net with fish.

9 Then, as soon as they had come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid on it, and bread.

10 Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish which you have just caught.”

11 Simon Peter went up and dragged the net to land, full of large fish, one hundred and fifty-three; and although there were so many, the net was not broken.

12 Jesus said to them, “Come and eat breakfast.” Yet none of the disciples dared ask Him, “Who are You?” — knowing that it was the Lord.

13 Jesus then came and took the bread and gave it to them, and likewise the fish.

14 This is now the third time Jesus showed Himself to His disciples after He was raised from the dead.

Some theologians think John added chapter 21 sometime after writing the rest of the book, perhaps to clear up confusion that Christ would return before John died and/or to show Peter’s restoration to favor.

Sea of Tiberias (v. 1) = Sea of Galilee

Nathanael (v. 2) — first mention since chapter one.

Peter may have been impatient (v. 3), waiting for he didn’t know what. So to do something, he went fishing. Not that this was wrong, but simply that as a man of action, he felt the need to do something.

morning had now come (v. 4) — literally “first light,” still probably quite dark

The disciples did not recognize Jesus at first (v.4) either by sight or by voice.

children (v. 5) — should be “boys” or “sirs”

Jesus’ question (v. 5) expects a negative answer (in Greek). He knew they hadn’t caught any, but perhaps wanted to point out their emptiness before He met their needs.

John recognized Jesus first (v. 7)

Peter had seen and been privately reconciled with the Lord before this (Luke 24:34; 1 Corinthians 15:5).

200 cubits (v.8) — about 100 yards

The fire (v. 9) with the bread and fish, was a miracle.

152 (v. 11) — Some commentaries say this was the number of known Gentile nations at that time, making this a type of the kingdom when the Gentiles are blessed through Israel. That seems like a stretch to me.

Verse 11 is a bookend with Peter’s first meeting with Jesus in Luke 5:1-11 when he had another miraculous catch of fish.

Verse 12 is evidence that Jesus’ appearance had changed.

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