Friday, November 5, 2021
17-19 Then he said it a third time: “Simon, son of John, do you love me?”
Peter was upset that he asked for the third time, “Do you love me?” so he answered, “Master, you know everything there is to know. You’ve got to know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. I’m telling you the very truth now: When you were young you dressed yourself and went wherever you wished, but when you get old you’ll have to stretch out your hands while someone else dresses you and takes you where you don’t want to go.” He said this to hint at the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. And then he commanded, “Follow me.”
20-21 Turning his head, Peter noticed the disciple Jesus loved following right behind. So when Peter saw him, he asked Jesus, “Master, what’s going to happen to him?”
22-23 Jesus said, “If I want him to live until I come again, what’s that to you? You—follow me.” That is how the rumor got out among the brothers that this disciple wouldn’t die. But that is not what Jesus said. He simply said, “If I want him to live until I come again, what’s that to you?”
24 This is the same disciple who was an eyewitness to all these things and wrote them down. And we all know that his eyewitness account is reliable and accurate.
25 There are so many other things Jesus did. If they were all written down, each of them, one by one, I can’t imagine a world big enough to hold such a library of books.
-John 21:17-25 The Message
Verse 17: He *said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love Me?” So Peter was hurt because He said to him the third time, “Do you love Me?” And he said to Him, “Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You.” So Jesus *said to him, “Tend My sheep.
Our Times Are in His Hand
Verse 18: Truly, truly I tell you, when you were younger, you used to put on your belt and walk wherever you wanted; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will put your belt on you, and bring you where you do not want to go.”
Verse 19: Now He said this, indicating by what kind of death he would glorify God. And when He had said this, He *said to him, “Follow Me!”
Verses 18-19 study: This is a prediction of Peter’s death by crucifixion. Peter was crucified for his faith, as tradition would indicate. He didn’t feel worthy of dying as his Lord did. Despite Peter’s future, Jesus told him to follow him. We can be uncertain and fearful of our own future. If we know God is in control, we can follow Christ with confidence.
Verse 20: Peter turned around and *saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them—the one who also had leaned back on His chest at the supper and said, “Lord, who is the one who is betraying You?”
Verse 21: So Peter, upon seeing him, *said to Jesus, “Lord, and what about this man?”
Verse 22: Jesus *said to him, “If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow Me!”
Verse 21-22 studies: Peter asked Jesus how John would die. Jesus told Peter not to concern himself with that. We want to compare our lives to others when it is not necessary at all, especially to rationalize our level of devotion to Christ or to question God’s justice. “What is it to you? You follow me!” That’s how Jesus responded to Peter.
Verse 23: Therefore, this account went out among the brothers, that that disciple would not die; yet Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, but only, “If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you?”
Verse 23 study: Records show during the early church that after John spent several years as an exile on the island of Patmos, he returned to Ephesus, where he died as an old man towards the end of the first century.
Verse 24: This is the disciple who is testifying about these things and wrote these things, and we know that his testimony is true.
Verse 25: But there are also many other things which Jesus did, which, if they were written in detail, I expect that even the world itself would not contain the books that would be written.
Verse 25 study: John’s purpose in writing his Gospel was to show that Jesus was the Son of God. He presented and systematically shared evidence for Jesus’ claims. When you enter a courtroom to present a case, the evidence has to be given. The jury that hears it must make a choice. It is no different here. Whoever reads the Gospel of John must make a choice; is Jesus the Son of God or isn’t he? You are the jury. Evidence shows everything clearly. Make the decision. Read John’s Gospel and believe!
Father, we have an obligation to follow you. But, we also have a responsibility to not worry about others’ commitment to you. Jesus told Peter, “you follow me.” That’s the point; we can’t worry about others. Let us stay focused on you and your plans for us, and not how others plans to either follow you or not. In Jesus’ name. Amen!