Easter Tuesday – April 23, 2019
15 When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my lambs.” 16 A second time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Tend my sheep.” 17 He said to him the third time, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter felt hurt because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” And he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep.
Good Friday and Easter Day changed the world. The events of his life, death
Speaking to ten of the disciples (Thomas was absent) Jesus had said: “As the Father has sent me, so I send you” (20:21). He also foreshadowed the Holy Spirit’s power equipping them for this work at Pentecost: “Receive the Holy Spirit…” Our response to the ministry of God’s Word would determine our eternal future.
In chapter 21, Jesus challenged Peter three times: “Do you love me…?” Peter had said earlier he would lay down his life for Jesus (John 13:37), yet three times had denied him, as Jesus predicted. Now with these three questions and thrice-given command, Feed my sheep (or lambs), Jesus was telling Peter he was forgiven and included in the commission given to all the disciples/apostles. Jesus’ priority is that his sheep be fed with his gospel and his Word – the two go hand in hand.
This is so important. If we call ourselves Christians, we should make it our priority to feed on God’s Word, involving ourselves in a church where God’s Word is faithfully and clearly taught – for our own sake and for the sake of our family or household. Furthermore, as previous generations understood, it is now our responsibility to play our part in talking up the best news the world has ever known – the news about Jesus, the Word of God incarnate, the Son of God, who died and rose again to save us.
Almighty Father, you have given your only Jesus Christ, to die for our sins and to rise again for our justification: grant that we may put away the old influences of corruption and evil, and always serve you in sincerity and truth; through the merits of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP, Easter 1 – adapted)
Daily Reading Plan
Read John 21:15-25
Today’s Reading and Reflection concludes this Lenten series.
Tomorrow, Wednesday, I return to the weekly Word on Wednesday with Reflections for the Easter Season. Please let me know if you have any questions.