Summary: Every Christian is called to go and make disciples. We are called to be 'fishers of men." Jesus asks the question: "Where's the fish?"
Where’s the Fish? John 21:1-14 (I used the God's Word translation)
On January 10, 1984 Wendy’s restaurant aired a commercial that became a sensation.
• They wanted to compare the big hamburger on a Wendy’s bun to the smaller burger patties of McDonalds Big Mac and Burger King’s Whopper.
• In that commercial, Clara Peller looks down at a small hamburger and asks the famous question: “Where’s the Beef?”
• The commercial was an instant hit, and the phrase, “Where’s the beef” turned up in songs, tv shows, t-shirts, and was even asked in the 1984 presidential debate by then Vice-President Walter Mondale.
In our scripture this morning, Jesus has been crucified, and has risen from the dead.
• Peter, and several other disciples, still wondering about everything that has been going on, decide to go fishing.
• (Read Scripture)
So they go out all night ~ don’t catch any fish ~ and when they get to the shore Jesus is there (although they realize it’s Him) ~ and He asks them, “Friends, where’s the fish?”
There’s some great lessons in this Scripture:
I). First, we find out that it was after a night of failure that Jesus came!
A). It seems that Peter and the other disciples didn’t know what to do with themselves.
• Jesus was gone ~ and then 3 days later He appeared ~ then He disappeared.
• What were they supposed to do? Peter did was had been familiar to him before Jesus found him: He went fishing, and he invited the others to go with him.
B). Before Peter met Jesus his life was a failure (all our lives are).
• When Jesus went away, they were lost: They forgot that Jesus had promised never to leave them!
• So instead of doing the things Jesus had taught them to do while He was with them, they went back to the things they did before; and that’s always the wrong thing to do!
C). They did their own thing and they failed!
• When we do our own thing rather than the things Jesus taught, and commands, us to do, we fail!
• But when they finally gave up and came back to shore, Jesus was there!
II). There Jesus asks: “Where’s the fish?” (“Haven’t you caught any fish?” But He already knew the answer.
A). What did Jesus tell them to do? (Throw the net on the right side of the boat)
• When they did that they caught a boat load of fish (153)
B). What’s the lesson here?
• Success may be very close, but we will never truly find it until we obey Jesus!
C). There’s another thing here:
• In Luke 5, when Simon Peter first met Jesus, in another situation when Peter had fished all night and caught nothing, Peter argued about casting the nets again, and, when he caught a bunch of fish, he asked Jesus to leave because Peter saw his sinfulness.
• This time, Peter does not argue when Jesus tells him to cast the net one more time, and, when John realizes that it is Jesus on the shore and tells Peter, Peter jumps in the water to swim to shore to be with Jesus!
• When we truly realize who Jesus is we desire to be close to Him, no matter what the obstacles may be!
D). Because Jesus turns failure into success.
• Sometimes Jesus calls us to work on the other side of the boat ~ the side we don’t think will make a difference.
• We need to be willing to go wherever, whenever and do whatever Jesus tells us to do ~ when we do that we find success!
III). I also think there’s another meaning to the question: “Where’s the fish?”
A). In Matthew 4:19, Jesus says to Simon Peter and his brother Andrew: “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
• Following Jesus had brought them into a new business, “Fishing for People”.
• The net they should have been spreading and casting out is the Gospel of Jesus the Christ.
B). Maybe this was the fish Jesus was also asking when He asked that asked Peter that question.
• Where’s the REAL fish? Those people that I told to witness to and bring to Me.
Maybe Jesus is asking us that same question this morning: “Friends ~ where’s the fish?”