John 21: Feed My Sheep
Peter, Thomas and Nathanael go fishing and while they are fishing in the sea of Tiberias, they see a man on the shore. The man calls out to them and asks; “…Children, have ye any meat? They answered him, No.” (John 21:5) So the man on the shore tells them to cast their net on the right hand side of the ship in order to get fish. So the Apostles do this and find that there are more fish caught in the net then possible to pull into the ship. This is when the Apostles knew that the man was in fact Jesus, and this was the third time He had shown Himself to the Apostles since His resurrection.
When the Apostles come back to land, they find on the shore a fire of coals with fish and bread. Jesus sits down with them to eat and asks each one of them; “…lovest thou me more than these?” (John 21:15,16,17) Jesus asks the question three separate times and each time the answer from the Apostles is the same; “…Lord; thou knowest that I love thee…” (John 21:15, 16, 17) and Jesus responds the same three times; “…Feed my lambs.” (John 21:15, 16, 17) Why does Jesus repeat this three times? Because it is important! Jesus want His Apostles and anyone who is following Him to feed His lambs, physically in the sense of helping one another and helping those less fortunate, but also in a Spiritual sense. If we have been given the opportunity to find Faith in Jesus Christ, we should share that with others and help others come to Him.
Jesus foretells the Martyrdom of Peter; “…thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee and carry thee whither thou wouldest not. This spake he [Jesus], signifying by what death he should glorify God….” (John 21:18) So what death would Peter face? According to Christian tradition, Peter was crucified in Rome under the Emperor Nero Augustus Caesar. It is traditionally believed that Peter was crucified upside down at his own request, because he felt unworthy to die the same way Jesus did.
The chapter and the Gospel according to John ends with a Testimony that the things written are true and that many things did Jesus do, that are not recorded in this book or the Bible. “And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.” (John 21:25) We see that there are definitely more books than the Bible, to believe that the Bible is the only word of God would be to not believe on the Spirit of Revelation and the Power that God can give to man to enable him to speak with God, like prophets of old.