John xxi. 4, 5

Robert Hawker

"But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore; but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. Then Jesus saith unto them, children, have ye any meat?"—John xxi. 4, 5.

Every incident in relation to Jesus, and his love to his people, becomes interesting; and here is a very sweet one. Jesus was now risen from the dead. But his disciples had only faint and indistinct notions of the immense importance of this glorious event. They therefore were returned to their employment of fishing, as unconscious of what the resurrection from the dead should mean. All night they had been employed in a fruitless pursuit, and when the morning began to dawn, Jesus stood on the shore; but their eyes were holden, that they did not know him. My soul! learn from hence, that Jesus is often with thee, often looking on thee, and often providing and preparing for thee, while thou art ignorant of his presence and his love. He speaks to them, before they speak to him. Yes; "if we love him, it is because he first loved us. "And what doth Jesus say? "children, have ye any meat? "Precious account of Jesus! My soul, turn over the several blessed particulars shewn in it. He calls them children. Yes: his people are his children, for he is the everlasting Father, as well as their Husband and Brother: indeed, he stands in the place of all relations, and fills all. My soul! if thou didst but consider this, and keep the remembrance of it always uppermost in thine heart, how wouldest thou delight to go to Jesus, as to "a brother born for adversity, a friend that loveth at all times, and one that sticketh closer than a brother!" Observe how earnest the Lord is concerning their present state and safety. Oh! that every child of God in Christ would learn from hence how Jesus takes part in ail that concerns them. Surely this solicitude of Jesus takes in the whole of a believer's warfare. Are they poor in this world? Do they seek their bread out of desolate places? Like the disciples, do they toil all night, and gain nothing? And shall not He, who providently caters for the sparrow, know it, and provide for them, amidst all their manifold necessities? Look up, my poor afflicted brother (if perchance such an one should read these lines of my Evening Portion); look up, I say, and behold Jesus in this endearing instance of tenderness to the wants of his few faithful disciples. He that caused a miraculous draught of fishes to supply the pressing necessities of his disciples, can, and will equally now regard the state of all his redeemed, under their various temporal straights and difficulties. The promise is absolute, and hath never failed: "thy bread shall be given, and thy waters shah be sure, and thy defence shall be the munitions of rocks," Isa. xxxiii. 16. And as for spiritual famine, when at any time the waters of the sanctuary run low, Jesus is the Almighty Governor, our spiritual Joseph, through all the Egyptian state of his people here below; and he speaks to every one, yea, to thee, my soul, in the number: "children, have ye any meat? "Lamb of God! though thou art now in thine exalted state, yet not all the church in glory above, nor all the hallelujahs of heaven, can detain thee one moment from knowing, and visiting, and supplying all the manifold wants of thy church in grace here below! Doth Jesus say to me," hast thou any meat? "Lord, I would answer, thou art "the bread of life, and the bread of God; yea, the living bread, which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life to the world!" Precious Jesus! be thou my bread, my life, my hope, my fulness, my joy, and my portion for ever!



Robert Hawker

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