“Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus. He called out to them, ‘Friends, haven’t you any fish?’
‘No,’ they answered.
He said, ‘Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some.’ When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.
Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord!’ As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, ‘It is the Lord,’ he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water” (John 21:4-7, NIV).
This event marks the second occasion in which Jesus has provided the disciples with a miraculous catch of fish. The first was when a younger Simon Peter was called by Jesus into ministry. Much has happened in Peter’s life since that occasion three years ago, including his recent denial of Jesus, his Lord and his friend.
This second catch of fish is so very important, especially for Peter. The once dead, now risen Jesus is showing that, just as Peter had been called into the ministry, he is now being reinstated to serve. And where before Peter had been called to follow, now he is being called to lead. Jesus will soon ascend into Heaven, leaving Peter and the other disciples to carry-on all that Jesus has taught.
Imagine Peter’s excitement in seeing Jesus, in the flesh, standing on the shore calling out to the men on the boat. In youthful exuberance, Peter prepares to be the first of his friends to greet Jesus. He does something that might seem strange under the circumstances, putting on additional clothing before jumping onto, rather into, the water below. Perhaps convinced by his newly found faith and at the prompting of his friend, John, Peter thinks that he will be walking on water, just as he had earlier in his days of ministry. Imagine his boatmates’ laughter and friendly razzing as Peter breaks the surface of the water. Peter doesn’t care. His focus is on Jesus and he can’t wait to be with him. Jesus is once again alive!