Answers for the Gospel of John Chapter 21

About These Answers 

Questions and Answers

1. What is another name for the Sea of Tiberius?

Sea of Galilee

2. From a reading of Matthew 4:18-22, why does it seem natural that some of the disciples were at the Sea of Tiberius fishing?

Peter, Andrew, James and John were fishermen there when Jesus called them to be disciple. . .and Nathaniel was from Cana in Galilee

Matt 4:18-22
18 As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19 "Come, follow me," Jesus said, "and I will make you fishers of men." 20 At once they left their nets and followed him. 21 Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22 and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.

3. What does Didymus mean and why was it used when Thomas is named (See Gospel of John Chapter 11, verse 16, Gospel of John Chapter 20, verse 24, and Gospel of John Chapter 21, verse 2)?

It was another name for Thomas’ which means “the twin” in Greek

Questions and Answers

1. What are some possible reasons that the disciples did not recognize Jesus when he called to them from the shore?

  • It was twilight
  • It was foggy
  • It was too far
  • It was hidden from them by Jesus

2. How did John know that it was the Lord who had called to them? Does the record of Luke Chapter 5, verses 1-11 help us understand why John may have recognized Jesus?

Because of the large number of fish…they had been fishing all night long and caught nothing. . . by simply casting the net once more they caught more fish than they ever had – it was a miracle and only Jesus was capable of this miracle and he had done so several years before when he first met them

3. Why did Peter jump into the sea?

Because he wanted to see Jesus…he wanted to get there quickly and this was Peter’s nature to do things quickly. . . he did not want to wait for the boat laden with fish to slowly make it to the shore…he figured he could swim faster than the boat could make it

Questions and Answers

1. What is the difference in the three questions Jesus asked Peter and what is Peter’s answer to each question?

  • Do you love me more than these?
  • Do you truly love me?
  • Do you love me?

Peter basically answers each question the same “Yes Lord, you know that I love you”

2. What or who could Jesus have been referring to when he said to Peter ". . .do you love me more than these?” in verse 15 of Chapter 21 of the Gospel of John?

The fish that were just caught or maybe his fellow disciples

3. Why was Jesus asking Peter the questions about his love for him? Doesn’t Jesus know all things?

Before his famous and foolish denial Peter had previously boasted that he would never deny him (Matt 26:33; Mark 14:29; Luke 22:33) but Jesus knew Peter loved him. Jesus was challenging Peter to demonstrate his love for him by the actions of a pastoral leader in contrast with the actions of his three denials (John 13:38 et al) and the fear in his life after the crucifixion (John 20:19,26).

Questions and Answers

1. Who are the lambs (Gospel of John, Chapter 21, verse 15) and sheep (Gospel of John, Chapter 21, verses 16 and 17) Jesus refers to?

Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ

2. What was it specifically that Jesus wanted Peter to do…what changes in his life was Jesus asking Peter to make, what actions to take?

To feed the lambs of the flock, be a fisher of men and to represent and present Jesus to the world

3. Why was this meeting between Jesus and Peter so important?

Jesus would not be around anymore in an earthly manner as a human leader and Peter was needed to lead the Apostles and lead the new church.

Jesus knew it would be a great challenge for these pioneer Christians, especially Peter who would lead them. The Lord states Peter would be martyred just after this restoration.

Questions and Answers

1. Why do you think Peter asked Jesus about John?

Perhaps he thought John would suffer a different death than him because John was “the disciple whom Jesus loved”

Perhaps he loved his friend and was worried about him

2. What does tradition tell us of Peter and John’s deaths?

Peter was crucified upside down [at his request]John was placed in boiling oil but escaped unhurt, John lived the longest

3. Did Jesus say John would not die? What does he mean by his statement in the Gospel of John, Chapter 21, verse 23 "If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you?"

The key word is “IF”. . .Jesus put the extreme in front of Peter as he knew what Peter was thinking and I think he was saying“ . . . even if I let him not see death what is that to you? You need to follow me”

Questions and Answers

A question for everyone to answer - (pick one).

  • Which character(s) do you identify with most from the Gospel of John, Peter, Mary Magdalene, Thomas, John, Martha, someone else? Why?
  • What is your favorite verse or story from the Gospel of John?
  • What have you learned about Jesus from this study of the Gospel of John that has blessed you?