"Friends, haven't you any fish? ..." (John 21:5-6)

Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus. He called out to them, "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 21:4-6)

Why didn't they realize it was Jesus?

This is Jesus' third appearance in before his followers after his crucifixion according to the Book of John.

The first was when Jesus appeared to Mary as she stood in Jesus' empty tomb.

Jesus is again appearing before his disciples - not in his physical body as taught by ecclesiastical institutions and their teachers as we have clarified before. He left his physical body at the time of death - communicated in the scriptures as having "risen."

Jesus is now appearing in yet another angel-like form that enabled their eyes to perceive him and the fishing instruction was meant to show them that it was indeed Jesus appearing before them.

How do we know he didn't appear in his physical body? Because he stood before them yet they didn't recognize him:
Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus. (John 21:4)
Why is this important? Because this point is one of the main purposes that Jesus was appearing before them in these different forms.

And we can say different forms because in each appearance they did not recognize him - and in the Book of John he appeared at least three times after the death of his physical body. If he appeared in the same form each time they would have immediately recognized him the second and third appearance - but they didn't.

We must ask why Jesus had to re-appear to his disciples after the death of his physical body. He walked amongst them for at least three years if not more. He had plenty of time to teach them what they needed to know.

The reason he appeared to them after the death of his physical body wasn't to try to convince them that he was great or something. Why would he do this to prove he was great? A person will typically prove they are great by doing something fantastic - commanding something, right? Why didn't he pick up a mountain or something then?

What was Jesus trying to prove?

What was the purpose of Jesus' appearances after the death of his physical body? Was he trying to prove that he was great?

Jesus was trying to show them there was life after the death of the physical body. He was trying to show them that they (and we) are not the physical body. They - and all of us - are each spirit-persons who are temporarily occupying physical bodies.

Jesus also confirmed the importance of this teaching when he walked the earth:
“I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him." (Luke 12:4-5)
Note this ("after that") assumes the person lives on after the body is killed.

Jesus also taught not to focus one's consciousness on the body:
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear." (Luke 12:22)
Now if the body were so important, why would Jesus teach his students not to worry about the body?

Because we are not these physical bodies. They are vehicles we occupy for a few years. Why is this so important that Jesus would not only teach this, and then illustrate it with his own life?

This knowledge - knowing our identity as not the physical body - is critical for spiritual life. It is the "101" of spiritual life. And the lack of this understanding is why so many ecclesiastical Christian institutions have misunderstood Jesus' teachings, misunderstood the spiritual world, and confused Jesus with the Supreme Being.

And they have taught all kinds of ridiculous teachings to try to explain what happens after death: They talk about bones rising out of graves and dancing on graves and all sorts of ghoulish things.

What is the second coming?

Many have misunderstood the concept of the "second coming." As though Jesus' physical body will ride up over the clouds on horseback to rescue all the physical bodies of those who joined a particular sectarian institution.

What a ridiculous notion - that Jesus will ride over the clouds to rescue everyone in their physical bodies - as though their physical bodies will "inherit the earth."

What about the physical bodies of the billions of physical bodies that have died and decomposed between Jesus' departure in the First Century until his second coming?

This doesn't make sense. So they created some kind of physical body-limbo state they call "purgatory" - where all the dead bodies are supposedly waiting in limbo for his second coming.

This false teaching is exposed by the many sectarian teachers who falsely predicted the date of this second coming. It didn't happen when they predicted it over and over because the teaching is erroneous.

The reality is that Jesus told his followers that he will appear to them at the end of their lifetimes. At the end of their physical lifetimes, he would be there for them - reappearing to them individually - to guide them back to the spiritual realm. And those who did not follow his teachings would meet another fate at the end of their physical lifetimes - "end of days."

The reason all those institutional teachers had the dates wrong over and over is that the "end of days" occurs for each person at the end of our respective physical lifetime.

This has nothing to do with Jesus' physical body riding on horseback over clouds and so forth. These speculative misunderstandings of metaphorical texts are because these so-called followers of Jesus did not learn lesson "101" from Jesus - that we are not these physical bodies and our real identities exist on another realm or dimension outside the physical world.

Then when they imagine the spiritual realm they picture all these old grey-haired people sitting around playing harps or gossiping - because most people die when their body gets old right?

Yet anyone who has seen a cadaver (dead body) will tell us there is no life left in that body. The body is lifeless after its death. Then it decomposes, eventually turning into soil.

Where did the life that was in the body go after death? Where is the personality?

Jesus is trying to show his disciples that we live on after our body dies. He is trying to show them directly, with his own re-appearance before their eyes after his body was murdered on the cross.

We will also see that from this position - of proving to his followers the spiritual nature of his and their existence - that Jesus is requesting that his disciples go out and teach this and his other teachings to others:
"Take care of my sheep." (John 21:16)

What does he mean by sheep?

"Sheep" is being metaphorically used to indicate a person who is willing to follow Jesus' teachings.

Is he telling them to teach that all we have to do is accept Jesus died for my sins and then we are saved? No.

He is telling them to follow his teachings:
"Follow me!" (John 21:19)
And because he was showing them that he - and they - are not the physical body, they can now more readily understand and teach about the nature of the Supreme Being - on the realm of the spiritual - beyond the scope of the physical eyes. They are now more prepared to follow Jesus' most important teaching:
“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment." (Matt. 22:37-38)

*Here is the translation of these verses from the Lost Gospels of Jesus:
Then Jesus said to them, “Children, do you have any fish?” “No,” they answered. And he told them, “Cast the net off the right side of the boat and you will find a catch.” So they cast, but they were unable to haul it in because of the great number of fish. (John 21:5-6)