Day 24: John 21
John 21 is the final chapter of John’s gospel describing the third time Jesus had appeared to his disciples after his resurrection. In a familiar chain of events, Peter was fishing with his friends, and they had been out all night but caught nothing. Imagine the disappointment.
Before their boat had reached the shoreline, a man shouted out to the disciples, ‘Friends haven’t you any fish.’ The man then instructed them to throw their nets over the right side of the boat where they brought in a huge haul of fish. 153 to be precise.
It was then that they realised it was Jesus. Peter in his typical style, jumps overboard and swims 100 metres to reach Jesus. Jesus then has breakfast with the disciples over a fire.
The last time Peter was round a fire, he was denying Jesus, but here over breakfast there is a powerful moment of restoration where Peter moves on from his failings and deals with the painful regret. Within this moment of restoration was also a moment of commissioning where Peter received instructions for what was next.
Peter’s regrets and failings could easily have stopped him fulfilling the mission Jesus had for him. When we’ve messed up, when we’ve got it wrong, we shouldn’t fall into the trap of thinking this needs to exclude us.
If we consider the amazing part that Peter had to play in the early church, we will see that God’s plans for us are bigger than our mistakes! I’m glad that this particular breakfast by the fire took place.
At the start of this devotional series I set out that John’s purpose was that his readers would know who Jesus is, believe in him, and have life in his name.
As you’ve read through John’s gospel, alongside the brilliant devotionals that our team have put together, I pray that you have found this to be the case.
That as you’ve read the seven signs, and the seven I am statements, I trust that these have brought fresh insight to you about the character and heart of Jesus.
Ps Dan Hoyle
Bishop Auckland Campus Pastor