Third Sunday After Easter – May 1, 2022
Third Sunday After Easter – May 1, 2022
You may well recall another instance where Peter had led his crew of fishermen out for a night’s netting. In that instance, too, they had caught nothing. Jesus was there, too, in that instance. At that time, he said for them to put out into the deep and let down their nets once again. And, wonder of wonders, at that time their nets were filled to overflowing (cf. Lk. 5:1-11). At this time, on the third occasion of Jesus revealing himself after his resurrection… at this time, Peter has led his crew of fishermen out for a night of throwing the nets, and they caught nothing. In this instance, Jesus tells them to cast the nets on the right side of boat. They do. The catch is immense.
These are two occasions given us in the Gospel of Luke where Peter’s skill as a fisherman is displayed. Given that on both occasions, Peter does not catch a single fish, you may well conclude that on his own Peter had little skill and ability to commend himself as a professional fisherman… But then there is Jesus… Jesus and his commands: “Put out to the deep and let down your nets” and “Cast the net on the right side of the boat and you will find some.” Peter, at the command of Jesus, hauls in the largest catch of fish he and his fellow fisher folk have ever seen.
These two instances of Peter’s failure at fishing bracket like bookends the story of Peter in the Gospel of Luke. Peter had reached the limit of his human ability. His mind could conceive of no way forward… no way to turn failure into success… no way to catch fish that had not already been tried. But then there is Jesus… there is Jesus and his command… Jesus, the Lord of Creation speaking into reality an event heretofore inconceivable… Jesus, The Lord of Creation but also The-Lord-of-Impossible-Catches-Of-Fish.
So, too, you… like Peter, both your beginning and your ending are with Jesus… your beginning… your ending… and all the times between are with Jesus. You begin with him in your baptism. You end with him by going down to a death like his, mortal and dusty. But… but all the days between are the days of your baptism, the days which Jesus speaks into existence, promising never to leave you or forsake you.
Table Talk: Discuss the implications of bracketing events in one’s life.
Pray: Heavenly Father, grant your commands to be true in my life. Amen
John 21:1-14 (15-19) English Standard Version
21 After this Jesus revealed himself again to the disciples by the Sea of Tiberias, and he revealed himself in this way. 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 will go with you.” They went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing.
4 Just as day was breaking, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. 5 Jesus said to them, “Children, do you have any fish?” They answered him, “No.” 6 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. 7 That disciple whom Jesus loved therefore said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his outer garment, for he was stripped for work, and threw himself into the sea. 8 The other disciples came in the boat, dragging the net full of fish, for they were not far from the land, but about a hundred yards off.
9 When they got out on land, they saw a charcoal fire in place, with fish laid out on it, and bread. 10 Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.” 11 So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore, full of large fish, 153 of them. And although there were so many, the net was not torn. 12 Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” Now none of the disciples dared ask him, “Who are you?” They knew it was the Lord. 13 Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and so with the fish. 14 This was now the third time that Jesus was revealed to the disciples after he was raised from the dead.
(15 When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.” 16 He said to him a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.” 17 He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. 18 Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.” 19 (This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.) And after saying this he said to him, “Follow me.”)