It was just a few moments before the hull of the boat sliced into the shore.
“Bring some of the fish you just caught,” Jesus hollered.
Peter swallowed the bread, jogged to the boat and climbed on board to help drag the bulging net out of the water.
The seven of them heaved fish, nets, ropes, and baskets up the shore to begin untangling fins and sorting by kind and size.
Peter draped the net bow to stern to mark the repairs. From end to end he found no rips. No overstrained knots. No place for fish to escape. Jesus had done his work for him again.
“153 keepers!” Andrew shouted. Peter looked up to see him drop the last basket on the beach.
They all looked at Jesus. He smiled. “Come and have breakfast.”
Finally together again, they were careful with words. Between bites of bread and fish, they cautiously maneuvered around an unforgettable event, about which many questions remained.
But none of them dared ask Him, “Who are you?” They finally knew.
Many months ago, on this same sea, these same men endured a terrifying storm. At that time they weren’t even aware of who they were carting around in their boat. After Jesus spoke to calm the wind and waves, they asked one another, “Who is this? Even the winds and waves obey him?”
It was a question they would continue to ask either silently or out loud. A question they would even try to answer for him, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
But on this day–after they had seen Jesus alive and after he had filled their nets with fish–no one dared to ask Him who He was.
There was no need. Without words, they would each concur with Peter’s first confession: this is the Christ, the Son of the Living God.
He always will be.