Bible Story (John 21:1-19)
Story from the Deep Blue Bible Story Book: Peter said to his friends, “I’m going fishing; want to go with me?” They grabbed their nets and headed to the sea. They all climbed in a boat and rowed out a ways. They cast out their nets, but there were no fish. The disciples continued fishing through the night- casting out their next and bringing them back in- but they never caught one fish.
In the morning, a man appeared on the shore. The man called out to the disciples, “if you cast your net to the other side of the boat, you will catch some fish!” The disciples weren’t sure, but they threw their nets out to the other side of the boat. This time, so many fish were caught in the net, the disciples could hardly pull the net back in!
“Look, the man on the shore; it’s Jesus!” said John. Peter jumped out of the boat and ran through the shallow water to Jesus. The other disciples followed Peter’s lead to shore. Jesus was on the shore, sitting by a fire. “Bring some of the fish you just caught, and we can all eat some fish and bread for breakfast,” Jesus said. Jesus took the fish, said a prayer to God, and shared the fish with the disciples. Jesus took the bread, said a prayer of thanks to God, and shared the bread with the disciples.
When Jesus and the disciples finished eating breakfast on the beach, Jesus asked Peter a question, “Peter, do you love me?” Peter answered, “Yes, Jesus, you know that I love you.”
Jesus said to Peter, “Feed my lambs. Share God’s love with everyone.” Jesus asked Peter again, “Peter, do you love me?” Peter answered, “Yes, Jesus, you know that I love you.”
Jesus said to Peter, “Take care of my sheep.” Jesus asked Peter again, “Peter, do you love me?”
Peter was very sad that Jesus asked him a third time if he loved Jesus. Peter answered, “Yes, Jesus, you know everything. You know that I love you. You are my best friend. “
Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. Follow my example.”
Video Telling of the Story: Breakfast on the Beach
Have a Conversation:
- This is the third time Jesus appeared to his disciples after he was crucified and rose from the grave on the third day. Why do you think the disciples did not recognize Jesus on the shore when he first spoke to them?
- The disciples recognized that it was Jesus speaking to them on the shore when he told them to cast their nets out on the other side of the boat and their nets were filled after a night of catching nothing. Does this remind you of another Bible story? Jesus told the disciples to cast their nets out after a long night of fishing when he called them to follow him as his disciples! (You can read this story in Matthew 4:12-23, 9:9-13, 10:1-4; Luke 5:1-11, 8:1-30.)
- After Jesus’ death, Peter and the disciples went back to what was familiar to them, fishing. They returned to their boats and fish nets. When they finished breakfast, Jesus asked Peter three times “Peter, do you love me?” and responded “feed my sheep” and “take care of my sheep.” Jesus was giving Peter a second chance after denying Jesus three times. Jesus wanted to remind Peter what he was supposed to do as his disciple. What can you do as a disciple of Jesus to show Jesus that you love him?
- Heavenly Father, thank you for your love that never changes. Thank you that you always welcome us with open arms and continually invite us to be with us. Just as you invited the disciples to come have breakfast with you long ago, you invite us daily to be in communion with you. Open our eyes to notice you in every moment. Amen.
- Take a Look Back: Gather together baby pictures of everyone in your family. Look through these photos together and have a conversation about what is going on in the picture. Ask you child if they remember what is going on in their baby pictures. They may not recognize themselves, the other people in the picture or what was taking place, but with your help they can remember what is happening. In our Bible story today, the disciples did not recognize Jesus when they first saw him, and this was the third time he appeared to them after his death. Jesus helped his disciples recognize and remember who he is by telling them to cast out their fishing nets on the other side of the boat. When they pulled the nets back in, the nets were full of fish, a miraculous catch, just like the miraculous catch when Jesus first called them to become his disciples.
- Play “Go Fish”: As you are playing, talk about how Jesus helped the disciples fish (both for fish and for people). Ask “who helped you fish?” during your game!
- Make Breakfast as a Family: Make your favorite recipes as a family and enjoy breakfast together as the disciples did with Jesus on the beach long ago. Weather permitting, enjoy your meal outside!
Deep Blue Bible Storybook written by Kerry Blackwood, Daphna Flegal, and Brittany Sky