Page images

c ch. xx. 14.
d Luke xxiv.


e Luke v. 4,

0, 7.

fch. xiii. 23:

XX. 2.

the sea.

disciples. 3 Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also ego with thee. They went forth, and entered into f a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing. 4 But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore : but the disciples c knew not that it was Jesus. 5 Then d Jesus saith unto them, Children, have ye any 8 meat ? They answered him, No. 6 And he said unto them, e Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of h fishes.

7 Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. i Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat k unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into

8 And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were not far from land, but las it were tro

hundred cubits,) dragging the net with h fishes. 9 As soon e render, come.


render, the. 8 render, fish : see note.


render, the fishes. i

render, Simon Peter then hearing that it was the Lord, girt. k render, about him.

I render, about two hundred cubits off. occurred before : see Luke v. 1 ff.

is here, as in ch. xx. 19, one of motiontwo other of his disciples] Who these were He came and stood on the shore. A sudden does not appear. Probably (as Luthardt) appearance is indicated by the words. some two not named in the Gospel, and · 5. Children] In ch. xiii. 33 we have the therefore not specified in its appendix. similar expression, little children." 3.] The disciples returned to their occu- have ye any fish ?] This substantive is said pation of fishing, probably as a means of to signify any thing eaten as an additament livelihood, during the time which the Lord to bread, but especially fish. So that here had appointed them in Galilee between the best rendering is as in margin. the feasts of the Passover and Pentecost. 6.) See Luke v. 6. 7.] The therefore This seems to be the first proposal of so here seems distinctly to allude to that for. employing themselves. They went mer occasion in Luke v. 1 ff.- the similarity forth] from the house where th

of the incident hay led the beloved together. they caught nothing) as Apostle to scrutinize more closely the before, Luke v. 5. The correspondence of person of Him who spoke to them. "John this account with that is very remarkable is the more keen-sighted, Peter the more -as is also their entire distinctness in the ardent. So Johın recognizes Him before midst of that correspondence. The dis- Peter ; but Peter goes forth to Him before ciples must have been powerfully reminded John.” Euthymius. He put on his of that their former and probably last fish- fisher's coat or shirt for decorum: he bound ing together. And after the "fishers of it round him, to facilitate his swimning. menof that other occasion, the whole

for he was naked] i. e. he was could not but bear to them a spiritual stripped for his fisher's work ;- some say, meaning in reference to their apostolic only without his upper garment. Some commission :--their powerlessness without take it literally, that he was absolutely Christ, --their success when they let down naked, which is more probable and underthe net at His word. Their present part stand the putting on of the coat as above. was not to go fishing of themselves, but Theophylact explains the word rendered to wait for the promise of the Father," “fisher's coat” to be a linen cloth which the Acts i. 4 (Luthardt). 4.] stood on Phænicians and Syrians gird round them." the shore- the preposition rendered by on 8.] 200 cubits = 100 yards. The


then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread. 10 Jesus saith unto them, Bring of the fish which ye have now caught. ll m Simon Peter 1 went up, and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three : and for all there were so many, yet was not the net o broken.

12 Jesus saith unto them, & Come and p dine. And none of the g Acts 1. 41. disciples durst ask him, Who art thou? knowing that it was the Lord. 13 Jesus [9 then] cometh, and taketh r bread, and giveth them, and 8 fish likewise. 14 This is

the third time that Jesus t shewed himself to his h see ch. ix. disciples, after that he was risen from the dead. m read, So Simon.

n render, went aboard.
O render,

P literally,

: see note, q omit.

r render, the bread. 8 render, the fish.

t render, manifested : see on ver. 1.



lake was about five miles broad, according their fear, and their knowledge that it was to Josephus : according to Stanley, six in no other than He himself, hindered them.” the widest part: according to Dr. Thomson,

The verb rendered ask signifies nine. 9–14.] The significant meal : more:—to question or prove Him. see below, on ver. 14. 9.] The rationalist 13.) cometh,--from the spot where they and semi-rationalist interpreters have taken had seen Him standing, to the fire of great offence at the idea of a miracle being coals. The words taketh bread, and giveth here intended. But is it possible to un. them, bear evident trace of the same words derstand the incident otherwise ? As used on another occasion, (Matt. xxvi. 26 Stier says, let any child reading the and parallels,) and reinind us of the similar chapter be the judge. And what diffi. occurrence at Emmaus, Luke xxiv. 30. culty is there in such a fire and fish being 14. This is now the third time] The provided, either by the Lord Himself, or number here is clearly not that of all apby the ministry of angels at His bidding ? pearances of Jesus up to this time, for that

11.] went aboard into the boat, to Mary Magdalene is not reckoned; but which apparently was now on the beach, only those to the disciples,-i. e. any conin the shallow water. an hundred siderable number of them together. This and fifty and three] This enumeration is one internal trait of consistency speaks singular, and not to be accounted for by much for the authenticity and genuineness any mystical significance of the number of the addition. Without ag

ing with but as betokening the careful counting all the allegorical interpretations of the which took place after the event, and in Fathers, I cannot but see much depth and which the narrator took a part.

richness of meaning in this whole narrative. not the net rent: herein differing from what The Lord appears to His disciples, busied happened Luke v. 6, when it was broken. about their occupation for their daily bread;

12. Come and dine] The word used speaks and acts in a manner wonderfully implies the morning meal :- see ver. 3, 4. similar to His words and actions on a

none of the disciples durst ask him] former memorable occasion, when we know I take these words to imply that they sat that by their toiling long and taking down to the meal in silence, -wondering at, nothing, but at his word enclosing a mulwhile at the same time they well kuew, titude of fishes, was set forth what should Him who was thus their Host. Chrysostom betall them as fishers of men.

Can we says, “ for they no longer had their former miss that application at this far more imconfidence,.. but in silence and much portant epoch of their apostolic mission ? fear and reverence they sat down, looking Besides, He graciously provides for their on Him : ... secing His form changed and present wants, and invites them to be His very wonderful, they were much amazed, guests: why, but to shew them that in and wanted to ask Him respecting it, but their work bereafter they should never


15 So when they had p dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon [u son] of > Jonas, y lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest

that I y love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. 1 Acts 1x. 28. 16 He saith to him again the second time, Simon (u son] 1 let. ii. 23: of Jonas, y lovest thou me ?

i He saith unto him,

v. 2, 4.

P literally, breakfasted: see note.

U not expressed in the original. * Many ancient authorities read here, and in ch. i. 43, John, instead of Jonas.

y See note on the two words thus rendered.

want but He would provide ? And as authenticity, not of the connexion, of the connected with the parable, Matt. xiii. 47 two accounts. The word these has 1f., has the net enclosing a great multi- been strangely enough understood (Whitby, tude and yet not rent, no meaning ? and others) of the fish, or the employment Has the 'taking the bread and giving to and furniture of a fisherman.'-Olshausen them, and the fish likewise' no meaning, sees a reference to the pre-eminence given which so closely binds together the mira- to Peter, Matt. xvi. 19,-and regards the culous feeding, and the institution of the words as implying that on that account Lord's Supper, with their future meetings he really did love Jesus more than the in His Name and round His Table ? Any rest ;-but surely this is most improbaone who recognizes the teaching character ble, and the other explanation the only of the acts of the Lord, can hardly cast all likely or true one. Perhaps there is also such applications from him ;-and those a slight reference to his present just-shewn who do not have yet the first rudiments zeal, in leaping from the ship first to meet of the Gospels to learn. 15--23.] The the Lord. • Has thy past conduct to Me calling, and its prospect. 15. So truly borne out thy former and present when they had dined] There appears to warmth of love to Me above these thy have been nothing said during the meal. fellows ?? “Wonderful is the wisdom of Surely every word would have been re- Christ, who in so few words makes Peter corded. One great object of this appear. render account to Him whom He haddenied, ance, observes Stier, certainly was the con- and to his brother-apostles, to whom he had firmation, and encouragement of the fisher made himself superior in love;—thus giving of men, in his apostolic office.

us an example for the exercise of church Simon son of Jonas] A reminiscence pro. discipline.” Grotius. Peter's answer bably of his own name and parentage, as shews that he understood the question as distinguished from his apostolic name of above. He says nothing of the more than honour, Cephas, or Peter, see ch. i. 43. these — but dropping all comparison of Thus we have the same address, Matt. xvi. himself with others, humbly refers to the 17, connected with the mention of his Searcher of hearts the genuineness of his natural state of flesh and blood, which had love, however the past may seem to have not revealed to him the great truth just called it in question. We may note confessed — and Luke xxii. 31, “Simon, that two Greek verbs, both signifying to Simon,' when he is reminded of his natu- love, are used in this conversation. The ral weakness. See also Mark xiv. 37, and one (agapain) is applied to the ordinary Matt. xvii. 25, where the significance is love which men have to one another, or to not so plain. more than these] more the reverential love which is borne towards than these thy fellow-disciples, compare God and man by the child of God: the Matt. xxvi. 33; Mark xiv. 29, Though other (philein) to the closer love of a man all should be offended, yet not I. That for his own friend or his dearest relatives. St. John does not record this sayingThe former word is used in ch. xi. 5, makes no difficulty here; nor does 'it tell where it is said “Jesus lored Martha and against the genuineness of this appen- her sister, and Lazarus :” the latter by dix to the Gospel. The narrator tells the Jews in ch. xi. 37, when judging by that which he heard the Lord say, and the tears of Jesus for Lazarus, they er. tells it faithfully and literally. That it claimed, “ See how he loved him." Now coincides with what Peter is related to in observing this conversation in the have said elsewberc, is a proof of the original, we notice, that the Lord's tico

Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I y love thee. He saith unto him, 2 Feed my a sheep. 17 He saith unto him the third time, Simon [a son] of 2 Jonas, y lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, y Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, k thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I y love k ch 11, 24, 25 : thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my a sheep. 18 i Verily, 1 ch. xiii, 36. verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girdedst thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest; but

Acts xii. 3, 4.

z render, Keep.


see note.

first questions contain the former word, first converts; the shepherding or ruling while Peter's answers have the latter and the sheep, the subsequent government of warmer one:-whereas, the third time the the Church, as shewn forth in the early part question and answer both have the warmer of the Acts: the feeding of the sheep (dimiword (philein). This does not look like nutive, the choicest, the loved of the flock), accident. Peter in his two answers uses a the furnishing the now inaturer Church of less exalted word, and one implying a Christ with the wholesome food of the consciousness of his own weakness, but a doctrine contained in his Epistles. The persuasion and deep feeling of personal love. notice of these distinctions, which only the Then in the third question, the Lord adopts cold and undiscerning will attempt to the word of Peter's answer, the closer to deny, may serve to shew the English press the meaning of it home to him. reader, how entirely inadequate even the The answer, thou knowest, the two first best version must be to represent the times, seems to refer to the Lord's personal sense of Holy Scripture. For our lanknowledge of Peter's heart—in His having guage is quite unable to express its minute given him that name, ch. i. 43, Matt. beauties and differences. But those must xvi. 17; Luke xxii. 31, and the announce- strangely miss the whole sense, who ment of his denial of Him. The last time, dream of an exclusive primatial power here he widens this assertion • Thou knowest granted or confirmed to this Apostle. A me,' into • Thou knowest all things, being sufficient refutation of this silly idea, if it grieved at the repetition of a question needed any other than the fact, that Peter which brought this Omniscience so pain- was grieved at the question leading to the fully to his mind. Feed my lambs] commission, is found in the " fellow-elder" This, and the following answers of the (so in the original) of 1 Pet. v. 1, where he Lord, can hardly be regarded as the re. refers apparently to this very charge; see instating of Peter in his apostolic office, note on Matt. xvi. 17 ff. 17. Peter for there is no record of his ever having was grieved] not merely on account of the lost it: but as a further and higher setting repetition of the question, but because of forth of it than that first one, Matt. iv. 18 its being asked the third time, answering ff.—both as belonging to all of them on to the number of his own denials of Christ. the present occasion, and as tending to thou knowest all things] See above. comfort Peter's own mind after his fall,

18.] The end of his pastoral office is and reassure him of his holding the same announced to him :-a proof of the knowplace among the Apostles as before, owing ledge of all things which he had just conto the gracious forgiveness of his Lord. fessed to be in his Lord ;-a contrast to

Our Lord's three injunctions differ the denial of which he had just been rein their mode of expression. The first is, minded ;-a proof to be hereafter given of Feed my lambs. The second, Keep, tend, the here recognized genuineness of that or shepherd (the same word is used in love which he had been professing. Acts xx. 28: 1 Pet. v. 2) my sheep. The When thou wast young] This may be said third, Feed my sheep, but with this dif- merely in contrast to when thou shalt be ference, that the word sheep is the dimi- old. Or it perhaps includes his life up to nutive, expressive of affection. Perhaps the time prophesied of. thou girdedst the feeding of the lambs was the furnishing thyself] As in ver. 7, he had girt his the apostolic testimony of the Resurrection, fisher's coat to him: but not confined in and facts of the Lord's life on earth, to the its reference to that girding alone,—thou

when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands,

and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou m 2 Pet. i. 14. wouldest not. 19 This spake he, signifying mby b what

death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken

this, he saith unto him, Follow me. 20 [c Then] Peter, 5 ch. xil, 23, turning about, seeth the disciple " whom Jesus loved fol

lowing; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee?

21 d Peter o Matt. xvi. 27, seeing him saith to Jesus, Lord, and e what shall this man

1 Cor. iv.5: do? 22 Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tårry • till 3, 57,20.11: I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me.

23 f Then

25: XX. 2.

xi. 26. Rev.



render, what manner of death.

read, Peter then.
e literally, this man, what? :.e. how shall this man fare?
render, This saying therefore went.

girdedst thyself up for My work, and the same shore, Matt. iv. 19. wentest hither and thither—but hereafter 20.] The details necessary to complete there shall be a service for theo harder the narrative are obscure, and only hinted and more strictly confined.' thou shalt at in the background. It seems that stretch forth thy hands] .but not as just Peter either was at the time of the forenow, in swimming ;-in a more painful going conversation walking with Jesus, manner, on the transverse beam of the cross; and turned round and saw John followand another—the executioner- shall gird ing,-or that he moved towards Him on thee,- with the cords binding to the cross.' the termination of it (but certainly not Such is the traditionary account of the from a misunderstanding of the words death of Peter. Jerome says, that “he Follow Me,” see ver. 21). I can hardly was crowned with martyrdom under Nero, conceive Him moving away on uttering being crucified with his head downwards these words, and summoning Peter away and his feet upwards, because he alleged in private. It seems in the highest degree himself to be unworthy of being crucified unnatural. This description and identificain the same manner as his Lord.”

tion of the disciple whom Jesus loved is shall carry thee) viz. in the lifting up evidently inserted to justify his following, after the fastening to the cross-or perhaps and is a strong token of St. Johu's hand in making thee go the way to death, having written this chapter ; see ch. xii. bearing thy cross. whither thou 23. 21.) Peter's question shews that wouldest not] “ For,” says Augustine, he bad rightly understood the Lord's pro“ who wishes to die? Truly no one: and phecy respecting him. He now wishes to so universal is this feeling, that it was said know what should befall his friend and to St. Peter, Another shall gird thee and colleague,—“giving him a return (for his carry thee whither thou wouldest not.” similar service in ch. xiii. 23 just referred

19. Follow me] Not to be under. to), and, in the idea that he too might stood, I think, of any present gesture of the be desirous to ask about himself, but might Lord calling Peter aside;- but, from the lack the courage, Peter_took up the next verse, followed perhaps by a motion enquiry." Chrysostom. This

not of Peter towards Him, in which John mere idle curiosity, but that longing which joined. The words seem to be a plain we all feel for our friends. Is he not to reference to ch. xiii. 36 ;- and the follow- follow Thee too? is he not to go the same ing,—a following through the Cross to way of death with us?” Euthymius. glory;-see Matt. xvi. 24; Mark x. 21. 22.] The words what is that to thee? Now, however, " taking up the cross” is imply a rebuke z—not perhaps however so omitted. He had made this so plain, that sharp a one as has been sometimes seen in it needed not expressing. There was also them. They remind Peter of the distinct. a forcible reminding Peter of the first ness of each man's position and duty before time when he had heard this command on the Lord; and the subsequent command,


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