The last chapter of John describes the third time Jesus appeared to the disciples after His resurrection. He had manifested Himself to them when Thomas was absent, then again when Thomas was with them. This chapter describes how seven of the disciples (including Thomas) had spent the entire night fishing and had caught nothing. They did not recognize the Man who told them to cast the nets on the right side of the boat, but they did as He told them.
The events which followed convinced them, and they saw and recognized that the “stranger” was Jesus. They rushed to shore and discovered He had prepared a fire and had fish and bread ready for them to eat. Think for a moment about the Lord and His eating with them. The Jesus who had been raised from the dead was the Jesus who had walked among them. It was His nature to share food with those around Him.
Jesus often ate with others. Just a few days earlier He sat in the upper room and ate the Passover meal with the apostles, and now He shared that fish beside the Sea of Galilee. They had toiled all night in their boat, but without fishing He had a fish already cooked for them. Jesus ate with others.
He ate with sinners and tax collectors. Shortly after He called Matthew to become a disciple, He went to Matthew’s house where there were many other tax collectors and shared a meal with them (Mark 2:15-16). The religious leaders of Jesus’ day would never have eaten with such “evil” men, but Jesus came to live among sinful men and lead them to heaven.
He fed the multitude of followers with only a handful of loaves and fishes—five thousand and then four thousand men (not counting the women and children who also ate). What is remarkable is that many of them only followed Him because of the food He gave (John 6:26).
He ate at the home of a Pharisee and did so without washing His hands (Luke 11:37-38). The Pharisees always ritualistically washed their hands, but Jesus did not do this. He was not concerned about how one ate food but was gravely concerned about sin which was in the hearts, even of those who washed their hands. There are many other accounts of Jesus eating with men while on this earth but take time to consider one special account of Him eating with others. In the upper room, He spoke of how the Passover was to be fulfilled in the kingdom of God where He would assemble again with them in a weekly feast, the Lord’s supper (Luke 22:15-16). He gave them a direct command to ensure that it was done remembering Him. He longs to eat around that table with you every week. How can anyone choose to fail to be at that special feast with Him!