Summary: Leaving the past behind and getting on with our spiritual walk
It had been an interesting spring. I suppose interesting would be a good word to use here. They had seen their best friend tried in a Roman Court and sentenced to death. They had seen him nailed to a cross and die, they had seen him taken down and buried. Three days later they saw him alive and well and talked to him and ate with him. Yeah I think I’ll stick with interesting. And then the scripture that was read this morning said that later, after all of this happened that Jesus appeared to the disciples in a little bit of a different setting.
John wrote that Jesus met with the eleven remaining disciples on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. Let’s pull up a map here, some familiar spots, here’s Jerusalem, here’s the Dead Sea, here’s the Sea of Galilee and here is the Sea of Galilee. Now some of you might be looking in your bible and you are saying “Oh no Pastor in my Bible it says it was the Sea of Tiberias.”
Simple reason, an old name and a new name. Recognize this? It’s Ayers Rock, well actually it used to be called Ayers Rock now it’s called Uluru, well actually it used to be called Uluru, then it was called Ayers Rock and now it’s called Uluru again. And if you were to go to Australia you would hear some people call it Ayers Rock, and some would call it Uluru and some people just refer to it as the “Red Centre”.
Kind of like what used to be Hammonds Plains became just a part of the Halifax Regional Municipality, and now it’s just Halifax, but let’s not go there. To really confuse the issue the name Gennesaret was used at another point in history to describe the same body of water.
Story is told about a lady who had been to the Holy Land and she was trying to impress her pastor with her new found knowledge. “I was able to see the Sea of Galilee and Lake Gennesaret” she told him. “Actually” he replied “Galilee and Gennesaret are synonymous” “I know” she said “But I found Gennesaret a little more synonymous than Galilee.”
And just to add a little more to the thing, Galilee, Gennesaret or Tiberias, whatever you want to call it is less then 20 kms long and 12 kms wide so it’s not a sea, it’s a lake. Oh well whatever you want to call it, this is where Jesus met his disciples.
But it wasn’t all of the disciples who were there; we are told that there were John 21:2 Several of the disciples were there—Simon Peter, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples. If we wanted to speculate on who the other two disciples were one good guess would be Andrew, cause he was Peter’s brother and fishing partner and maybe Phillip because he had been listed alongside of Andrew before. And they were kind of hanging out, talking, today if they were doing that in a church we’d say they were “Fellowshipping”. It seems like today Christians get guilt feelings if they aren’t doing something churchy, so they don’t just hang out and have fun they fellowship.
And it was at that point that John 21:3 Simon Peter said, “I’m going fishing.” “We’ll come, too,” they all said.