Friday, March 28, 2008
There are puzzling questions that go with this passage. Why don't the disciples recognize Jesus right away? It seems they are just hanging out, not knowing what is next - why?
In Shane Claiborne's book, The Irresistible Revolution, he makes the point that becoming a Christian, to him, seemed to be a matter of a list of don'ts. And that after he made changes in his life, he wondered of that was all there was. "Don't do this, don't do that." But what was he supposed to do? That's a familiar concept, isn't it? We cram this new life in Christ into a tight little package, don't we? We quantify, qualify it, define it in ways that are manageable to us. But in the process, it may easily cease to resemble Jesus' life at all. Which is where I think this passage comes in. One part of what happens here, I think, is some shock treatment for the disciples. They are at risk of falling back into a comfy pattern of life - because they (like Claiborne) don't know what else this new life is supposed to look like. So Jesus rattles their plans, shows them the emptiness of going back to the old life (no fish), and then reminds them how overwhelming and powerful life with him is.
The hard thing is that it seems almost impossible for us to live this new life. We fall into patterns that look like the old ones over and over. But there's so much more to find. How can we live in the new, full net way of living all the time? Thoughts? - Curtis