Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sea of Galilee~Mensa Christi~Day Six

Welcome back to Galilee! I'll never get over the views...not ever!

My friends, THIS was my favorite place to be on our entire trip to Israel!

On THIS beach, a resurrected Jesus called out to His disciples who had been out fishing ALL NIGHT,
"'Friends, haven't you any fish?' 'No,' they answered. He said, 'Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some.' When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish." John 21: 5,6

After this interaction, John realized it was Jesus, Peter JUMPED INTO THE WATER to get to Jesus as quickly as humanly possible, leaving the other disciples to haul all these fish in.

The church that was built here is called Church of the Primacy of Saint Peter, or Mensa Christi for short.

There was one monk sitting inside reading his Bible when I stole a quiet moment inside. While we were still there, a church group sang a few hymns.

Mensa Christi, literally translated "Christ's Table," is believed to be the place where Jesus cooked His friends fish and bread over a fire by the time they made it back to shore. Did you catch that? When His friends had been out fishing all night long and caught NOTHING, Jesus had already cooked them a fish breakfast, and it was ready for them when they docked!

"When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread. Jesus said to them, 'Bring some of the fish you have just caught.' Simon Peter climbed aboard and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, 'Come and have breakfast.' John 21: 9-12"

These stones could have been part of a fishing wharf!

You can exactly imagine Jesus standing there cupping his hands to amplify His voice and calling out, "Friends! Haven't you caught anything?!"

This makes you actually picture what happened. They fished ALL NIGHT and caught NOTHING. Then, a man on the shore gives these professional fishermen a tip. Haha! They gave it one more try. What did they have to lose, after all? Then they hauled in this HUGE CATCH! John realized that it was the Lord, and Peter jumped ship and swam (or waded) the 100 yards (Jn 21: 8) to shore, leaving his buddies to do the dirty work! WHY? You can click HERE if you'd like to know the background as to why Peter would have jumped ship in the first place!

After "the guys" ate breakfast together, Jesus "recommissioned" Peter. Remember, Peter had denied Jesus THREE TIMES shortly before Jesus went to the cross, so there was a bit of mending to be done to their relationship. Jesus went for it. He reinstated Peter right there in front of all of the disciples that were there at breakfast. You can read more about this story in John Chapter 21.

Nostalgic doesn't begin to scratch the surface of this place. Listening to the Sea lap gently on the black, pebbly shoreline, hearing your steps crunch through the miniature stones and shells on the beach, being where the RISEN SON OF GOD was with His disciples...
undeniably awesome...

Next stop in Galilee, a quick, windy road up the hill to:
The Mount of Beatitudes

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