In John 21:1-25 Jesus appears to seven of His disciples and encourages Peter to shepherd God’s people. Peter and six other disciples had been fishing all night but had caught nothing (John 21:1-3). Jesus appeared on the beach and asked if they’d caught anything, and was told “no” (John 21:4-5). Jesus then commanded they cast their net again, on the right side of the boat, and they caught a huge amount of fish (John 21:4-6). John realized it was Jesus and told Peter, who jumped out of the boat and swam to Him (John 21:7). The other disciples brought the boat and fish to shore where Jesus had already built a fire and cooked breakfast (John 21:8-13). This was Jesus’ third appearance to the disciples (John 21:14). After breakfast, Jesus then talked with Peter and restored him to ministry, commanding him three times to care for God’s people (John 21:15-17). This was done in contrast to Peter’s comments that he would never deny the Lord and would be faithful to death (Matt. 26:33, 35; John 13:37). Of course, Jesus knew Peter would fail (John 13:38), and when the test came, he denied the Lord three times (John 18:17, 25, 27). For this reason, Jesus spoke with Peter about his love for Him, and restored him to service. Jesus then revealed to Peter that he would, some day, be faithful to death, and would thus glorify God as a martyr (John 21:18-19). John then corrects a common misunderstanding in which people thought He said the apostle John would not die before the Lord returned (John 21:20-23). John then provides a final statement that his testimony about Jesus is true (John 21:24), and if all that Jesus said and did were recorded, there would not be enough books to record it all (John 21:25).
July 15, 2017