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John 21

Jerry Zhang
Jerry Zhang

2 min read

The Disciples Go Fishing

7 disciples go fishing at night, but catch nothing. At daybreak, Jesus (except the disciples didn’t know it was Jesus yet) gave them instructions to cast the net on the right side of the boat. And there were so many that the disciples struggled to bring all 153 large fish in.

They grilled the fish, ate the fish along with some bread.

It must be nice to chill with Jesus at the campfire. This is the interesting kind of relationship Jesus had with His disciples—He was Lord, but also friend.

We can have this kind of relationship with Jesus as well.

Jesus Asks Simon Peter Three Times

Round 1

Jesus’s First Question: Simon Peter, do you love me?

Simon Peter’s Response: Yes, of course!

Jesus’s Response: Feed my lambs.

Round 2

Jesus’s First Question: Simon Peter, do you love me?

Simon Peter’s Response: Lord, you know that I do.

Jesus’s Response: Tend my sheep.

Round 3

Jesus’s First Question: Simon Peter, do you love me?

Simon Peter’s Response: Come on, isn’t it obvious that I do?

Jesus’s Response: You will die.


Why does Jesus ask Simon Peter the same question three times? Seems a bit excessive if you ask me.

The number three has quite the biblical fame. Simon Peter denied Jesus three times before the rooster crowed. Jesus resurrected from death on the third day.

What about Jesus’s responses? Between the first and second response, the object of action changes from lamb to sheep.

As the disciples preach the Gospel, those who newly believe would be considered lambs (new Christians). Jesus asks Simon Peter to spiritually feed the new Christians.

As the new Christians mature spiritually, they become sheep. Jesus asks Simon Peter to care for the more experienced Christian as well.

And finally, Jesus foreshadows Simon Peter’s death, which will bring glory to God.

What a wholesome life lived to fully glorify God from end-to-end.

Who is the Beloved Disciple?

The beloved disciple is mentioned six times in the book of John, but not mentioned by any other Gospel.

  • The beloved disciple that asks Jesus during the last supper who will betray Him (John 13:23-25)
  • During Jesus’s crucifixion, Jesus tells His mother that the beloved disciple is her son (John 19:26-27)
  • Simon Peter and the beloved disciple rush to Jesus’s empty tomb (John 20:1-10)
  • The beloved disciple is one of the seven fishermen (John 21:1-14)
  • Peter inquires Jesus about the beloved disciple (John 21:20-23)
  • The beloved disciple wrote this very book (John 21:24)

I find this to be super fascinating. Biblical scholars debate the identity of the beloved disciple, but nobody knows for sure.


Jerry Zhang

Programmer, YouTuber, and amateur musician. I like to write too!