Jesus’ Threefold Restoration of Peter

15 When they had eaten breakfast, Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John,[a] do you love[b] Me more than these?”

“Yes, Lord,” he said to Him, “You know that I love You.”

“Feed(A) My lambs,”(B) He told him.

16 A second time He asked him, “Simon, son of John, do you love(C) Me?”(D)

“Yes, Lord,” he said to Him, “You know that I love You.”

“Shepherd(E) My sheep,”(F) He told him.

17 He asked him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love(G) Me?”

Peter was grieved(H) that He asked him the third time, “Do you love Me?” He said, “Lord, You know everything!(I) You know that I love You.”

“Feed(J) My sheep,” Jesus said. 18 “I assure you:(K) When you were young, you would tie your belt and walk wherever you wanted. But when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands and someone else will tie you and carry you where you don’t want to go.” 19 He said this to signify by what kind of death(L) he would glorify God.[c](M) After saying this, He told him, “Follow Me!”(N)

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  1. John 21:15 Other mss read Simon, son of Jonah; Mt 16:17; Jn 1:42
  2. John 21:15 Two synonyms are translated love in this conversation: agapao, the first 2 times by Jesus (vv. 15-16); and phileo, the last time by Jesus (v. 17) and all 3 times by Peter (vv. 15-17). Peter’s threefold confession of love for Jesus corresponds to his earlier threefold denial of Jesus; Jn 18:15-18,25-27.
  3. John 21:19 Jesus predicts that Peter would be martyred. Church tradition says that Peter was crucified upside down.

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