“Jesus said to them, ‘Come and have breakfast.’ Now none of the disciples dared ask him, ‘Who are you?‘ They knew it was the Lord. Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and so with the fish. This was now the third time that Jesus was revealed to the disciples after he was raised from the dead.” (John 21:12-14)
Some weeks after Jesus had risen from the dead, He found His disciples fishing on the shore of the Sea of Galilee. It seems rather curious that John records the fact that the disciples did not ask Jesus “Who are you?” Jesus had appeared to His disciples only twice after His Resurrection so they were beginning to get used to the fact that He had risen miraculously from the dead, and yet, such an idea was still unbelievable as it contradicted their whole worldview.
Those disciples did believe because they saw the Risen Lord with their own eyes. They went forth to preach the glorious gospel of their Risen Lord. Most of them died for what they knew to be the truth. That gospel is the same we preach today, a simple yet glorious story of love and mercy that stands on its own, told without gimmicks, CGI, brilliant music, or intricate theological arguments. People who hear that story of death and resurrection continue to ask that question of Jesus “Who are you?” Many ask “Who are you?” of Jesus and His disciples with a flippant and dismissive attitude. They dismiss faith because they reject the help of all others including God, preferring to think that they can attain peace with God or the universe by their own efforts. These who reject the gospel Lord will cast into eternal darkness.
On the other hand, many who ask of Jesus “Who are you?” are people who have been humbled by life’s circumstances, by their own sinfulness and failure; these are the poor, the downtrodden, the losers of the world. Those who ask with sincerity, hope, and faith the Lord will take into His Kingdom. And such were some of us. And because of the gift of faith to we who are not worthy, we all can look forward to sitting down to eat the wedding feast of the lamb in the presence of the Lord, just as the disciples sat down to eat breakfast with the risen Jesus.