15When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”
“Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”…
Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. 18Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” 19Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, “Follow me!” (John 21:15-19)
Good morning friends. I have some new followers joining this blog so I wanted to touch on who I am and what to expect from these posts, very briefly. Last year, I put together a Daily Devotion (which you will read below). I was going through the New Testament and picking out verses that really spoke to me and giving them a Common Sense analysis. I then took all those posts and put them in print and digital versions, which can be found here. So this year, I decided to follow my own reading plan and reread the entire Bible to see how intense pushing through the two reading plans can be every day. So far, as we wrap up April, it has not been impossible. Now, granted, reading the Bible has become my hobby this year. It’s what I find myself doing in my free time every day. If you are keeping up with the Old Testament reading, you’ll soon see that we are through the toughest parts of the Bible and are about to start reading books that just flow with beautiful imagery and prose. Also for this year, whenever I post on this website, I try to share something from the Old Testament to give y’all something different to read. But today, when I looked at what I had written last year, I felt like I needed to share this one again. So here is the devotional from the Common Sense Reborn Daily Devotional (CSRDD) that explains the verses you just read.
The verses above come from today’s reading plan. It’s an important closing in the Gospel of John for Peter, and for all of humanity. Jesus asks Peter three times if Peter loves Him. Peter does not see the significance of this as we do thousands of years later. Jesus asks Peter the same question three times to redeem Peter for the three times he denied Jesus the night he was arrested. As Peter was approached by three different strangers, asking Peter if he was associated with Jesus, Peter denied knowing the Son of God. So, essentially, back before the resurrection, when put on the spot, Peter had said he did not love Jesus. If he would not even admit to knowing Jesus, how was he able to admit he loved the Messiah. So Jesus gives Peter a shot at redemption, by asking him three times if he loved Jesus. And as Peter answers Jesus, he is given three sets of instructions: feed my lambs, take care of my sheep, and feed my sheep. So you may wonder why Jesus tells Peter to feed both His “lambs” and His “sheep.” Simply, I understand this to mean the literal, that a lamb is a baby sheep, so Jesus must be referring to those that will be new to following Christianity and the sheep are the older, current believers. For Peter to feed them and tend to them means he will have to give them the word of God from Jesus’ teaching. There is no greater sustenance to feed your soul then the truth of Jesus. It is the way and the life.
Jesus knew Peter had the potential and the promise to build His church long before Peter ever realized it. In fact, we still have not seen Peter demonstrate the leadership characteristics he will display as the leader of a church that will change the world. But today, we see, once again, the unending love and grace of Jesus as He restores Peter’s confidence in himself. The three denials are replaced with three confessions of love.
No matter how great your sin has been. No matter how bad of a life you have lived. No matter how much you might beat yourself up for mistakes of your past. No matter how much you do not believe in yourself, Jesus loves you. Jesus forgives you. And Jesus will restore you. Every. Single. Time. Confess your love for Him and find grace that never ends. Love God. Love Jesus. Love people. Find grace and purpose in His plan. Follow Jesus. Let’s feed the lambs, tend to the sheep. The world needs us now more than ever.
I also want to share the message from Elevation Church this past weekend. Entitled “Timing Your Testimony,” Pastor Steven Furtick gives a powerful, glorifying word and shares a story from his past that he has shared before, but with added details as we see God’s hand moving in real time. Make sure you listen to the very end.
And here is that amazing song Pastor Furtick refers to in the testimony he shared. We are all living testimonies. God has brought us through a turbulent time in humanities history. The world will always remember 2020. I hope through all of the fire, you felt the comfort of God and continue to draw near to Jesus and recognize how loved you are by your Creator and His Son, who gave His life so you may live. God Bless You all.
Reading plan: John 21:15-25
Deeper reading plan: 2 Chronicles 25-31