Each of the resurrection appearances of the Lord Jesus highlights some aspect of His current work as our High Priest above. He is seen commissioning, empowering, restoring, and blessing. As our Shepherd-High Priest, He meets and supplies our every need. In the scene which unfolded by the sea of Tiberias in John 21, there is also a foregleam of a heavenly scene. So numerous are the unique touches so characteristic of His ways, that the enlightened soul can only worship by chapter’s end.
There was a night of fruitless fishing. At the Word of the Stranger, the net was suddenly teeming with fish. The disciples brought the net of fish to shore. The fruit of their “labor” was really non-existent. It was only when His power was introduced that the net was filled with the multitude of fishes. Yet, His word to them was, “Bring of the fish which ye have now caught” (John 21:10, KJV). He gave them full credit for catching fish which, in reality, He had caught for them.
What a harbinger of the Bema! He will delight to reward each of us for labor which has been done for Him; the results of our labor were only possible because of His power and guidance. There is little wonder that we will cast our crowns at His feet!
There was not a word of rebuke or reproach to His disciples as they rowed to shore. No reminder to Peter of his failure. There was no hint to Thomas of his recent lapse. The other five were not dealt with as second-class disciples because they had forsaken Him in His hour of need. His kindness and gentleness are evident in His every word and gesture.
They had spent the night fishing. They were looking forward to a nice fish breakfast. After catching their fish, they would have to clean and then prepare them; then there would be the frying, and finally the enjoyment of the meal. But when they arrived at land, there was a meal already prepared: not only fish, but also warm bread to accompany it (v9). At the very least, He was teaching that He could do better for them than they could do for themselves.
But the scene on the shore has one additional touch which foreshadows a coming eternal day. The Lord of Glory, the Sovereign of the Skies, took bread and fish and began serving them. He, in resurrection glory, waited on His disciples and served them. Allow your imagination at least a moment or two of freedom. Can you envision Him moving from disciple to disciple asking them if they had enough? If they would like more? He made it His personal responsibility to be certain that each had all he wanted of the bread and fish.
Will this be what eternity is like? Will it be His personal responsibility to be sure that each believer is as full as He is able to make us? Will He, in Melchisedec character, come forth with heavenly “bread and wine” and reveal the wonders of divine Persons to us? What an eternity awaits us!