John 21
Chapter 21
Jesus shows himself to the disciples again
1After that, Jesus showed himself to the disciples again when they were by Lake Tiberias. #21:1 Lake Tiberias is another name for Lake Galilee. This is how it happened. 2Simon Peter, Thomas the Twin, and Nathanael were together. (Nathanael came from Cana in Galilee.) The sons of Zebedee (James and John) and two other disciples were also there. 3Simon Peter said to the other disciples, ‘I am going to go and catch fish.’ They replied, ‘We will come with you.’ So they went out and they got into the boat. But they caught nothing during that night.
4Early in the morning, Jesus was standing on the shore of the lake. But the disciples did not know that it was Jesus who stood there. 5Then Jesus asked them, ‘Friends, have you caught any fish?’ They answered, ‘No!’ 6He said, ‘Throw your net out on the right side of the boat. If you do that, you will catch some fish.’ So they threw the net out into the water. Then they caught so many fish that they could not pull the net back into the boat.
7The disciple that Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord!’ When Simon Peter heard him say, ‘It is the Lord,’ he put on his coat. (He had been wearing only a few clothes.) Then he jumped into the water. 8The other disciples followed him in the boat. They pulled the net that was full of fish behind them. They were not far from the shore. It was about 100 metres away. 9When they came to the shore, they saw that someone had lit a fire. Some fish were cooking on it. There was some bread there, too. 10Jesus said to them, ‘Bring here some of the fish that you have just caught.’
11Simon Peter got back into the boat and he pulled the net on to the shore. It was full of 153 big fish. There were so many fish, but the net had not broken. 12Jesus said to them, ‘Come here and eat breakfast.’ None of the disciples was brave enough to ask him, ‘Who are you?’ They knew that it really was the Lord. 13So Jesus got the bread and he gave it to them. Then he did the same with the fish.
14After Jesus died and became alive again, this was now the third time that he showed himself to his disciples.
Jesus talks to Peter
15When they had finished eating, Jesus spoke to Simon Peter. He said, ‘Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these other disciples love me?’ Peter answered, ‘Yes Lord, you know that I love you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Feed my lambs.’ #21:15 ‘More than these’ may mean ‘more than other things’ (like catching fish). Or perhaps it may mean ‘more than other people (the other disciples)’.
16Jesus asked him a second time, ‘Simon, son of John, do you love me?’ Peter answered, ‘Yes Lord, you know that I love you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Take care of my sheep.’ 17Jesus asked him a third time, ‘Simon, son of John, do you love me?’ Peter was sad because Jesus asked him a third time, ‘Do you love me?’ So he said to Jesus, ‘Lord, you know everything. You know that I really love you!’ #21:17 Jesus asked Peter three times, ‘Do you love me?’ Earlier, Peter had said three times that he did not know Jesus. He had said that three times before Jesus died. This may be the reason why Jesus asked the question three times. Jesus said to him, ‘Take care of my sheep. 18I am telling you what is true. When you were young, you put on your own clothes. Then you went to any place that you wanted to visit. But when you are old, it will be different. You will hold out your arms and someone else will tie your clothes for you. Then they will take you to a place where you do not want to go.’ 19When Jesus said this, he was showing how Peter would die. His death would show how great God is. Then Jesus said to Peter, ‘Follow me.’ #21:19 Jesus was telling Peter that Peter would die on a cross, with his arms on each side. He would die in the same way that Jesus had died.
20Peter turned round and he saw the disciple that Jesus loved. He was the man who had been very near to Jesus at the supper. He had asked Jesus, ‘Lord, who is going to sell you to your enemies?’ Now this disciple was following behind them. 21When Peter saw him, he asked Jesus, ‘Lord, what will happen to him?’ 22Jesus answered him, ‘Perhaps I might want him to still be alive until I return to this earth. But that should not matter to you. You must follow me!’
23At that time, people began to talk about these words that Jesus had said. Some disciples thought that Jesus meant that this disciple would not die. But Jesus did not say, ‘He will not die.’ Instead, he said to Peter, ‘Perhaps I might want him to still be alive until I return to this earth. But that should not matter to you.’
24I am the disciple who saw these things. I am the one who wrote them down. We all know that what I have written about them is true.
25Jesus did many other things also. If people wrote about all those things, there would be very many books. I do not think that the whole world would have enough room for all those books.