Hi, I'm Tim Coombs, co-pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church in Scotia, NY and a member of the network of biblical storytellers. To learn more about its mission, go to nbsint.org.
The story of the miraculous catch of fish occurs in the gospel of Luke and the gospel of John , but in very different contexts. In the gospel of Luke, Jesus is teaching by the sea of Galilee, and there's so many people that he needs to get into a boat. And he stands in the boat while the people stand on the shore, but after he's finished teaching, he says to Peter, whose boat it is, ""Let's go out into deep water and let down our nets for a catch."" Peter, who is known as Simon at this point says, ""Lord, we've fished all night. We've caught nothing, but if you say so we'll let down our nets."" And they do and of course, they catch a huge amount of fish such that the nets were about to break. And Simon Peter realizes what going here and he tells Jesus to go away, but Jesus says ""Come. Come with me and you will fish for people."" And he follows Jesus once they get on shore. Now, the other story in John, takes place after the resurrection of Jesus in John 21. The disciples have gone fishing not knowing quite what to do, and Jesus appears on the shore and yells out to them, ""Friends have you caught anything?"" And they say no. And he says, ""Throw your nets on the other side of the boat."" And they do and they catch all these fish. And the disciple whom Jesus loves says, ""That's the Lord, that's Jesus."" And Jesus swims to shore, and there's a fire going by Jesus, and he asks, ""Bring me some of the fish."" And Peter runs and grabs some of the fish, and they have a little barbecue on the shore. The story continues with Jesus asking Peter 3 times, ""Do you love me?"" And Peter, basically affirms his love for Jesus, somewhat undoing his 3-fold denial of Jesus earlier. The gospel of John concludes in this way. With Jesus and Peter reconciled and the new chapter of the people of God beginning.