153 Reasons Why Jesus Is Real
- Bible study
- Christian Evidences
- Christian Living
- Kingdom of God
- New Testament
Jan 17, 2015 2783
by Milton Hook
The Gospel of John seems to have a natural ending at the close of chapter 20. Chapter 21 seems to be a postscript. It is the story of Jesus appearing to seven of His disciples after the resurrection.
The disciples had toiled all night without catching a fish. There was nothing unusual about that.
Jesus called out to them, telling them to throw their net to starboard. It was common for one man to stand on the shore and watch for a glistening shoal of fish to surface. Those in the boat or the one standing in the water throwing the net were often too close to see the ripples of the fish close to the surface. Fishermen in Palestine still work in tandem today, one on shore and another close in shore throwing the net. There is nothing unusual about that.
After a night’s work breakfast was served on the shore. There was nothing unusual about that.
They caught 153 fish, a reasonable haul for seven men. Commentators have had a field day trying to analyse the figure as something symbolic. Augustine said 10 represented the Law and 7 represented the gifts of grace. He added 10 to 7 to make 17 and then calculated that 1+2+3+4+5+6+7+8+9+10+11+12+13+14+15+16+17 equals 153. So he concluded that the number of fish represents all those saved by both law and grace. Ingenious!! The truth is more likely that the number is an accurate count that lends a note of the usual or the commonplace or reality to the story. The story is all about REALITY.
They were real fishermen hauling in real fish with a real net followed by a real breakfast of real bread and a real grill in the presence of, above all, THE REAL RESURRECTED JESUS. The point is He was not the figment of the disciple’s imagination. He was not a ghost or apparition. He was the real Jesus who had conquered real death and was really resurrected.
– Milton Hook