Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

John 21:7

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved *said to Peter, "It is the Lord." So when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put his outer garment on (for he was stripped for work), and threw himself into the sea.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Galilee;   John;   Love;   Net;   Peter;   Thompson Chain Reference - Beloved Disciple;   Bible Stories for Children;   Children;   Disciple, Beloved;   Fall;   Home;   John, Beloved Disciple;   Peter;   Pleasant Sunday Afternoons;   Religion;   Simon Peter;   Stories for Children;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Fishes;   Garments;   Hyke or Upper Garment;   Ships;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Fish, Fisher;   Garments;   John;   Naked;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Fish;   John, gospel of;   Palestine;   Peter;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Friend, Friendship;   Hospitality;   Miracle;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Coat;   Dress;   Fishing, the Art of;   Naked;   Peter;   Resurrection of Christ;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Dress;   Galilee, Sea of;   Gospels;   John the Apostle;   Net;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Beloved Disciple;   Dragnet;   John;   John, the Gospel of;   Martha;   Presence of God;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - John, Gospel of;   Nets;   Peter;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Arrest ;   Body (2);   Coat (2);   Discourse;   Draught of Fishes;   Dress (2);   Fish, Fisher, Fishing;   John (the Apostle);   Luke, Gospel According to;   Nakedness ;   Pillow;   Sea of Galilee;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Miracles;   Naked;   3 To Draw, Drag;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Towel;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Chief parables and miracles in the bible;   Smith Bible Dictionary - John the Apostle;   John, Gospel of;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Thomas;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Jesus of Nazareth;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Andrew;   Christ, the Exaltation of;   Clothed, upon;   Fisher's Coat;   Fishing;   James;   John, the Apostle;   John, Gospel of;   Naked;   Thomas;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Christianity in Its Relation to Judaism;   New Testament;   Simon Cephas;  
Devotionals:
Every Day Light - Devotion for October 19;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

His fisher's coat - Or, his upper coat. Επενδυτην, from επι, upon, and ενδυω, I clothe; something analagous to what we term a great coat or surtout.

He was naked - He was only in his vest. Γυμνος, naked, is often used to signify the absence of this upper garment only. In 1 Samuel 19:24, when Saul had put off his ἱματια, upper garments, he is said to have been γυμνος, naked; and David, when girded only with a linen ephod, is said to have been uncovered, in 2 Samuel 6:14, 2 Samuel 6:20. To which may be added what we read in the Sept. Job 22:6, Thou hast taken away the covering of the naked; αμφιασιν γυμνων, the plaid or blanket in which they wrapped themselves, and besides which they had none other. In this sense it is that Virgil says, Geor. i. 299: Nudus ara, sere nudus, i.e. strip off your upper garments, and work till you sweat. See more examples in Bp. Pearce.

Cast himself into the sea - It is likely that they were in very shallow water; and, as they were only two hundred cubits from the land, (about one hundred and thirty-two English yards), it is possible that Peter only stepped into the water that he might assist them to draw the boat to land, which was now heavily laden. It is not likely that he went into the water in order to swim ashore; had he intended this, it is not to be supposed that he would have put his great coat on, which must have been an essential hinderance to him in getting to shore.

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on John 21:7". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/john-21.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved - John, John 13:23.

It is the Lord - He was convinced, perhaps, by the apparent miracle, and by looking more attentively on the person of one who had been the means of such unexpected and remarkable success.

His fisher‘s coat - His upper or outer garment or tunic, in distinction from the inner garment or tunic which was worn next the skin. In the case of Peter it may have been made of coarse materials such as fishermen commonly wore, or such as Peter usually wore when he was engaged in this employment. Such garments are common with men of this occupation. This outer garment he probably had laid aside.

He was naked - He was undressed, with nothing on but the undergarment or tunic. The word does not require us to suppose a greater degree of nakedness than this. See the Mark 14:51 note; also 1 Samuel 19:24 note.

Did cast himself into the sea - With characteristic ardor, desirous of meeting again his Lord, and showing his affection for him.

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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/john-21.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

John 21:7

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved said unto Peter, It is the Lord

Variety in unity

I.
LOVE RECOGNIZING JESUS. John was distinguished for his clear and far-reaching vision. Peter was the embodiment of zeal, John of love.

1. Love can recognize where mere earnestness fails. You did not hear anything as you sat in your friend’s house, and you were rather surprised when she broke off her sentence with “Excuse me” and hurriedly left the room--the fact was the mother had heard the cry of her child. You would have been earnest enough in doing good to the little one; but only the mother’s ear could hear its voice. And so in the case before us: let Peter but get half an idea that Jesus is standing on the shore, and nothing will keep him in the boat; but Peter, with all his earnestness, would perhaps have never said, “It is the Lord.”

2. Love communicates good. John could not keep the good tidings to himself. Whether in temporal or spiritual blessings, love invites others to share.

II. IMPETUOSITY AND ZEAL ENDEAVOURING TO HOLD COMMUNION WITH JESUS.

1. Consistency of character. The same Peter who once before walked upon the sea--who said, “Though all men forsake Thee yet will not I”--who ran into the sepulchre, and compelled John to follow, casts himself into the sea to go to Jesus.

2. Naturalness. Had any one else but Peter attempted this, it would have appeared awkward and ungraceful; had he refrained from rushing off to Jesus we should have felt that it was not like Peter. We believe in individuality. It would be better for the Church and the world if men would be themselves.

III. THE WISDOM OF CAREFULNESS. The other disciples took care of the fishes and came to land by the boat, and they were right; for

1. They were preserving what Jesus had given them.

2. They were showing that they appreciated His blessings.

IV. VARIETY IN UNITY. That little ship contained the infant Church, yet in that Church you find various types of character. There is the loving John, the go-ahead Peter, and the quiet, careful people who take care of the necessaries of life. And so in the Church. We need men who can stand upon the watch tower and point to Christ; we need others full of fire; and the plodding men who never do anything out of the way, but nevertheless do a great deal of necessary work. Thus

1. God distributes His gifts in various ways and infinite variety.

2. We should beware of jealousy.

3. We ought not to judge each other. As Matthew Henry says, “Some are useful as the Church’s eyes, some as the Church’s hands, and others as the Church’s feet; but all are for the good of the body.” (A. F. Barfield.)

It is the Lord

It seems very strange that these disciples had not, at an earlier period, discovered Christ, inasmuch as it was so manifestly a repetition of that former event by which they had become “fishers of men.” We are apt to suppose that when once again they embarked on the lake it must have been with many a thought of Him. Yonder--perhaps we fancy them thinking--is where we saw Him coming out of the mountains, when He walked on the water; yonder is where He made them all sit down whilst we bore the bread to them: there is the very spot where we were mending our nets when He came up to us and called us to Himself--and now it is all over. “We trusted that it had been He who should have redeemed Israel.” But there does not seem to have been any such sentimental remembrance. John takes pains to show them as plain, rough men, busy about their night’s work, and thinking a great deal more of their want of success, than about old associations. Then through the darkness He comes, and speaks as once before, and repeats the old miracle, and their eyes are all holden excepting the eyes of him who loved, and he first says, “It is the Lord.”

I. THEY ONLY SEE ARIGHT WHO SEE CHRIST IN EVERYTHING.

1. No man will understand the world aright, who cannot say about all creation, “It is the Lord.”

2. The same conviction is the only one to explain or make tolerable the circumstances of our earthly condition. Either our life is the subject of a mere chaotic chance; or else it is put into the mill of an iron destiny, which goes grinding on, regardless of what it grinds up; or else, there is the will which is love, and the love which is Christ! I understand not how a man can front the future knowing all his vulnerable points and all the ways by which disaster may come down upon him, and retain his sanity, except he believes that all is ruled, not merely by a God who may be as unsympathizing as He is omnipotent, but by His elder Brother, the Son of God. But the riddle of Providence is solved, and the discipline of Providence is being accomplished, when we have grasped this conviction--All events do serve me, for all circumstances come from His will andpleasure, which is love; and everywhere where I go--be it in the darkness of disaster or in the sunshine of prosperity--I shall see standing before me that familiar and beloved shape, and shall be able to say, “It is the Lord.” That is the faith to live by, and to die by; and without it life is a mockery and a misery.

3. This same conviction should guide us in all our thoughts about the history and destinies of mankind and of Christ’s Church. The Incarnation and the Crucifixion are the pivot round which all the events of the ages revolve. “They that went before and they that came after,” when He entered into the holy city were a symbol of history. All the generations that went before Him, though they knew it not, were preparing His way; and all the generations that come after, though they know it not, are swelling His triumph. The tangled web of human history is only then intelligible when that is taken as its clue, “From Him are all things, and to Him are all things,” and when all is finished, it will be found that all things have tended to His glory who is King of kings and Lord of lords.

4. Such a conviction living and working in our hearts would change for us the whole aspect of life. See Christ in everything, and be blessed; or miss Him, and be miserable. It is a waste, weary world, unless it be filled with signs of His presence. If you want your days to be true, happy, manly, and Godlike, it will only be when they all have flowing through them this conviction, “It is the Lord.”

II. ONLY THEY WHO LOVE SEE CHRIST. John, the apostle of love knew Him first.

1. In religious matters, love is the foundation of knowledge. There is no way of knowing a person except love. A man cannot argue his way into knowing Christ. Man’s natural capacity within its own limits is strong and good; but in the region of acquaintance with God and Christ, the wisdom of this world is foolishness. “He that loveth not knoweth not God, for God is love.”

2. Love will trace Him everywhere, as dear friends detect each other in little marks which are meaningless to others. Love’s quick eye pierces through disguises impenetrable to a colder scrutiny. Love has in it a longing for His presence which makes us eager and quick to mark the slightest sign that He is near, as the footstep of some dear one is heard by the sharp ear of affection long before any sound breaks the silence to those around. Love leads to likeness to the Lord, and that likeness makes the clearer vision of the Lord possible. “It is the Lord” is written large and plain on all things, but like the great letters on a map, they are so obvious and fill so wide a space, that they are not seen. They who love Him know Him, and they who know Him love Him.

3. And is it not a blessed thing that this glorious prerogative does not depend on what belongs to few men only, but on what may belong to all?

4. But we cannot love by commandment. The only way is to see the lovely. The disciple who loved Jesus was “the disciple whom Jesus loved.” Generalize that, and it teaches us that

III. THEY LOVE WHO KNOW THAT CHRIST LOVES THEM. Our love can never be anything else than the echo to His voice of tenderness, than the reflected light upon our hearts of the full glory of His affection. “We love Him, because He first loved us.” The fountain that rises in my heart can only spring up heavenward, because the water of it flowed down into my heart from the higher level. Oh, then, look to Christ, that you may love Him! Think of that Saviour who has died for us, and lives for us! Do not ask yourselves, to begin with, the question, Do I love Him or do I not? If a man is cold, let him go to the fire and warm himself. If he is dark let him stand in the sunshine, and he will be light. If his heart is all clogged with sin and selfishness, let him get under the influence of the love of Christ, and look away from himself and his own feelings, towards that Saviour whose love shed abroad is the sole means of kindling ours. (A. Maclaren, D. D.)

Now when Simon Peter heard that … he girt his fisher’s coat unto him

Peter’s reverence

for the Lord is indicated by the careful observation, even in such a moment of excited feeling, of the petty proprieties of clothing. (W. H. Van Doren, D. D.)

And did cast himself into the sea

I. REGARDLESS OF PERSONAL COMFORT.

II. ABANDONING HUMAN COMPANIONSHIPS.

III. DESPISING TEMPORAL GAIN.

IV. EAGERLY SEEKING JESUS. (S. S. Times.)

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "John 21:7". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/john-21.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

That disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. So when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his coat about him (for he was naked) and cast himself into the sea.

Again, John's greater perceptiveness and Peter's greater impetuosity come to light in this event. John was the thinker; Peter was the man of action. John recognized the Lord here, through the use of his mind; it was still too far off to see Jesus sufficiently to identify him visually. In the pull of that net with its mighty catch, John instantly recognized the Lord; and Peter believed it as soon as John announced it. Those experienced Galilean fishermen knew a miracle when they saw one, even if some of the modern divines have trouble seeing it.

For he was naked ... means "had on his undergarment only" (English Revised Version margin).

Cast himself into the sea ... This was for the purpose of swimming the intervening distance of a hundred yards to go to Jesus.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/john-21.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved,.... Which was John the Evangelist and Apostle, the writer of this Gospel:

saith unto Peter, it is the Lord; which two disciples were very intimate with each other, and communicated their thoughts freely to one another. John knew that it was the Lord, either by some special revelation, or from the multitude of fishes which were taken, and which showed a divine hand and power to be concerned. So faithful ministers of the Gospel know when Christ is with them, by his power attending their ministrations to the conversion of souls. The Cambridge copy of Beza's reads, "our Lord"; as do the Syriac, Persic, and Ethiopic versions; and it is reasonable to think, John speaking to a fellow disciple, who had equal interest in him with himself, might so say.

Now when Simon heard that it was the Lord; faith came by hearing, he was immediately convinced, and thoroughly satisfied, having received the hint upon a reflection on the surprising capture of the fishes, that it must be the Lord:

he girt his fisher's coat unto him. The Greek word επενδυτης, here used, is manifestly the אפונדת of the Hebrews; and which, the Jewish writers sayF2Maimon. & Bartenora in Misn. Sabbat, c. 10. sect. 3. , was a strait garment, which a man put on next his flesh to dry up the sweat; and a very proper one for Peter, who had been toiling all night, and very fit for him to swim in; and, by what follows, appears to be put on him next his flesh: for he was naked; for to suppose him entirely naked, whilst fishing, being only in company with men, and those parts of nature having a covering, which always require one, was not at all indecent and unbecoming:

and did cast himself into the sea; the Syriac adds, "that he might come to Christ"; and the Persic, "and he came to Christ"; showing his great love and eagerness to be with him; and, as fearless of danger, risks all to be with Christ; his love being such, that many waters could not quench, nor floods drown.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on John 21:7". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/john-21.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt [his] fisher's a coat [unto him], (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.

(a) It was a linen garment which prevented him from swimming freely.
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Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on John 21:7". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/john-21.html. 1599-1645.

People's New Testament

It is the Lord. Until the net was thus filled, the Lord was not recognized in the dim light. John first knew him.

Two hundred cubits. About one hundred yards.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Original work done by Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
Bibliographical Information
Johnson, Barton W. "Commentary on John 21:7". "People's New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pnt/john-21.html. 1891.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

It is the Lord (ο κυριος εστινho kurios estin). John‘s quick insight appears again.

Girt his coat about him (τον επενδυτην διεζωσατοton ependutēn diezōsato). First aorist middle (indirect) indicative with which note διεζωσεν εαυτονdiezōsen heauton in John 13:4. Apparently Peter threw on the upper garment or linen blouse (επενδυτηνependutēn) worn by fishers over his waistcloth and tucked it under his girdle.

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
Bibliographical Information
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/john-21.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Fisher's coat ( ἐπενδύτην )

An upper garment or blouse. Only here in the New Testament. In the Septuagint, 1 Samuel 18:4, the robe which Jonathan gave to David. 2 Samuel 13:18, the royal virgin garment of Tamar. The kindred verb, ἐπενδύομαι , occurs twice (2 Corinthians 5:2, 2 Corinthians 5:4), meaning “to be clothed upon,” with the house which is from heaven, i.e., clothed as with an upper garment. See on that passage.

Naked

Not absolutely, but clothed merely in his undergarment or shirt.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/john-21.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.

Peter girt on his upper coat (for he was stript of it before) - Reverencing the presence of his Lord: and threw himself into the sea - To swim to him immediately. The love of Christ draws men through fire and water.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on John 21:7". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/john-21.html. 1765.

The Fourfold Gospel

That disciple therefore whom Jesus loved1 saith unto Peter, It is the Lord2. So when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his coat about him (for he was naked), and cast himself into the sea3.

  1. That disciple therefore whom Jesus loved. John.

  2. Saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Even the wonderful draught of fishes did not at once arouse all the disciples to realize that a miracle had been wrought, and that Christ stood upon the shore. But John, having believed in the resurrection of Jesus even before he had seen the risen Lord, may rightly be presumed to have had a livelier expectation of meeting him in Galilee, and this expectation made him more alert for signs of the Lord's presence. During the night he had probably thought much of that other night when they took nothing, and of the day which followed and on which the Lord filled their nets for them. At any rate, the similarity of the two occasions now flashed through John's mind, and he recognized that it was Christ who had but now bade them cast the net.

  3. So when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his coat about him (for he was naked), and cast himself into the sea. The arduous task of fishing had caused Peter to lay aside his upper garment; but as he prepares to meet the Lord he puts it on, moved by reverence and respect for the Master, though it encumbered him greatly in his efforts to swim.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website. These files were made available by Mr. Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
Bibliographical Information
J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on John 21:7". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/john-21.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

Тогда ученик. Евангелист учит нас своим примером: всякий раз, когда паче чаяния к нам приходит успех, надобно возносить свой ум к Богу. Нам должно придти на ум, что благословение это проистекло от благодати Того, Кто является творцом всякого блага. И это благочестивое признание божественной благодати, зародившееся в душе Иоанна, привело его к тому, чтобы узнать Самого Христа. Он не узнал Христа телесным взором, но, уверовав в то, что изобилие рыбы даровано от Бога, заключил, что человек, направлявший старания учеников, есть Сам Христос. Но, хотя вера первой зародилась у Иоанна, Петр превзошел его своим рвением, когда, пренебрегая опасностью, бросился в воду. Другие последовали за ним на лодке. Наконец, все они подступили ко Христу, но Петр своей пламенностью опередил всех. Кроме того, неясно, вплавь или пешком Петр достиг берега. Достаточно верить в следующее: то, что он оставил лодку, не было необдуманным порывом. Петр опередил остальных по мере данного ему рвения.

 

 

 

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-21.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

7 Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher’s coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.

Ver. 7. Therefore that disciple, &c.] Now they see the cause why, till then, they caught nothing was, that they might the better know him to be the Lord. God will one day let us see that he in very faithfulness afflicts us; and that however it seems so for a season, it is not in vain to have sought his face. John knew not our Saviour by sight here, but by the multitude of fishes that came to hand by his direction. The Rochellers might easily see as much, when they were miraculously relieved by that shoal of shell fish cast upon their shore in a strait siege, whereby their city was miraculously preserved.

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on John 21:7". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/john-21.html. 1865-1868.

Sermon Bible Commentary

John 21:7

I. A weary night, but Christ came in the morning. So at first we are apt to say; but it would be putting it more correctly if we said that Christ, who had been present all the night, allowed Himself to be seen in the morning. He was now risen from the dead, and had put on that glorious body which evades our grosser sense, and needs an act of will to make it visible.

II. A Saviour habitually recollected and realised was the distinctive feature of apostolic piety; not to the eye-witnesses alone, but to all who believed their testimony, and to whom the Holy Ghost revealed the things of Jesus, Christ was ever present—the spectator of their conduct, the guardian of their path, the president of their home, the light of the dungeon, the solace of earth, the attraction to heaven. And we cannot read the writings or the record of their lives without feeling that of their Christianity the keynote was struck on occasions like this, perhaps this very morning; and whether feeding the sheep or following the Master, whether toiling for a maintenance or catching men, we cannot but admire the simplicity and grandeur, the seriousness and happiness, in their deportment so blended, as of those who had never quite forgotten the sweet surprise at the Lake of Galilee, and to whom it might any moment again be whispered: "It is the Lord."

III. We need not toil with dejected looks and drowsy eyes, for close at hand is One who can in a moment fill the net, and who, even if the net were continuing empty, can still feed the fishermen. As soon as the disciples were come to land, they saw that it was not for His own sake, but theirs, that Christ had asked: "Have ye any meat?" and although He allowed them to make their own addition to the banquet, they saw that, even if they had continued to catch nothing, their Master would not have suffered them to starve. Let us learn to trust in Him who can prepare a table in the wilderness, and who, when His people have been forced to acknowledge, "We have nothing of our own," loves to surprise them with the invitation, "Come and dine."

J. Hamilton, Works, vol. i., p. 263.


I. They only see aright who see Christ in everything. This word of John's, "It is the Lord," ought (1) to be the conviction with the light of which we go out to the examination of all events, and to the consideration of all the circumstances of our earthly life. (2) It is the only conviction that is adequate either to explain or to make tolerable the circumstances of our earthly condition. (3) It should guide us in all our thoughts about the history and destinies of mankind and of Christ's Church.

II. Only they who love, see Christ. John, the apostle of love, knew Him first. There is no way of knowing a person except love. "He that loveth not knoweth not God, for God is love."

A. Maclaren, Sermons preached in Manchester, 2nd series, p. 183.


References: John 21:7.—Contemporary Pulpit, vol. viii., p. 316; J. Keble, Sermons for Saints' Days, p. 68; J. Fraser, University Sermons, p. 123. John 21:10-25.—Parker, Christian Commonwealth, vol. vii., p. 143.

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Bibliographical Information
Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Sermon Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sbc/john-21.html.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

John 21:7. (For he was naked,)— That is, had only his under-garment on. See the note on 1 Samuel 19:24. Dr Heylin reads, He put on his upper coat, for he was stripped.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on John 21:7". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/john-21.html. 1801-1803.

Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

Observe here, 1. The great zeal and forwardness of Peter: hearing that it was Christ, he leaps into the sea to get to him. O how inviting, attractive, and alluring, is a sight of Christ! It will make those that know him break through all difficulties to come unto him. It is not a sea of water, no, nor seas of blood, that can keep a zealous soul at a distance from Christ: When Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his coat, and cast himself into the sea.

Observe, 2. What a complication of miracles were here: as soon as they came to land they discerned another miracle, viz. a fire of coals, and fish laid on, and bread, all created and produced by Christ out of nothing, at this time, as an evidence of his divine power; for before they could get the fish to shore, they saw fish broiling upon coals, which makes it evident that these were none of the fish which they had catched.

Christ, when he pleases for the benefit and comfort of his people, will work miracle upon miracle, mercy upon mercy, one wonder upon the head of another; for here, after a miracle at sea, they met with another miracle at land: As soon as they came to land they saw a fire.

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Burkitt, William. "Commentary on John 21:7". Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wbc/john-21.html. 1700-1703.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

7.] The οὖν here seems distinctly to allude to the former occasion—the similarity of the incident having led the beloved Apostle to scrutinize more closely the person of Him who spoke to them. διορατικώτερος μὲν ὁ ἰωάννηςθερμότερος δὲ ὁ πέτρος. διὸ γνωρίζει μὲν αὐτὸν ὁ ἰωάννης πρὸ τοῦ πέτρου· ἔξεισι δὲ πρὸς αὐτὸν ὁ πέτρος πρὸ τοῦ ἰωάννου. Euthym(259)

τὸν ἐπενδ. διεζ.] He bound round him his fisher’s coat or shirt, to facilitate his swimming.

ἦν γὰρ γυμ., i.e. as above, he was stripped for his fisher’s work;—[some say] without his upper garment. Some [more probably] take it literally, and understand that he girt round him his ἐπενδύτης as a subligaculum. Theophyl.,— ἐπενδ. λινοῦν τι ὀθόνιον, ὃν οἱ φοίνικες κ. οἱ σύροι ἁλιεῖς περιελίττουσιν ἑαυτοῖς.

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on John 21:7". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/john-21.html. 1863-1878.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

John 21:7. πάλιν τὰ ἰδιώματα τῶν οἰκείων ἐπιδείκνυνται τρόπων οἱ μαθηταὶ πέτρος καὶ ἰωάννης. μὲν γὰρ θερμότερος, δὲ ὑψηλότερος ἦν· καὶ μὲν ὀξύτερος ἦν, δὲ διορατικώτερος. διὰ τοῦτο μὲν ἰωάννης πρῶτως ἐπέγνω τὸν ἰησοῦν· δὲ πέτρος πρῶτος ἦλθε πρὸς αὐτόν, Chrysostom. Comp. John 20:3 ff.

τὸν ἐπενδύτην διεζώσατο] He had laid aside the ἐπενδύτης, and was in so far naked, which, however, does not prevent his having on the shirt, χιτωνίσκος, according to the well-known usage of γυμνός,(280) nudus, and עַרוּם (see Perizonius, ad Ael. V. H. vi. 11; Cuper. Obss. i. 7, p. 39, Interpp. zu Jes. xxx. 2; Grotius in loc). In order, however, not to appear unbecomingly in his mere shirt before Jesus, he girded around him the ἐπενδύτης, i.e. he drew it on, so that he gathered it together by means of a girdle on his body. Hengstenberg says incorrectly: he had the ἐπενδύτ. on, and only girded himself in the same (accus. of closer definition), in order to be able to swim the better. The middle with accus. of a garment always denotes to gird oneself therewith (Lucian, Somm. 6, de conscrib. hist. 3). Comp. περιζώννυσθαι, Revelation 1:13. The ἐπενδύτης is not equivalent to χιτών (Fischer, Kuinoel, Bretschneider), but an overwrap, an overcoat. Any garment drawn over may be so called (see the LXX. in Schleusner, Thes. II. p. 436; Soph, fragm. in Pollux, vii. 45; Dind. 391, comp. ἐπένδυ΄α in Plut. Alex. 32); it was, however, according to Nonnus and Theophylact, in the case of fishermen, and according to the Talmud, which has even appropriated to itself the word אטונדתא, in the case of workmen generally, a linen article of clothing (possibly a short frock or blouse) which, according to the Talmud, was worn, provided with pockets, over the shirt (according to Theophylact, also over other articles of clothing). See especially Drusius in loc. According to Euth. Zigabenus, it reached to the knees, and was without sleeves.

γυμνός] He had, in point of fact, no other clothing on except the mere shirt (comp. Dem. 583. 21 : γυμνὸν ἐν τῷ χιτωνίσκῳ); for precisely διὰ τὴν γύμνωσιν (Theodoret, Heracleus) he quickly put on the ἐπενδύτης, which had been laid aside during his work.

He reached the land swimming, not walking on the water (Grotius and several others), which is an imported addition. The ἔβαλεν ἑαυτόν graphically represents the rapid self-decision.

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Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on John 21:7". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/john-21.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

John 21:7. λέγει, saith) A quiet life more quickly observes Divine things, than an active life: and yet this latter furnishes an opportunity of doing so, and does not fail to produce fruit in the case of saints.— ἐπενδύτην) Suidas explains ἐπενδύτης as τὸ ἐσώτατον ἱμάτιον, the inmost garment. But the LXX. render by the word ἐπενδύτης, מעיל (the long upper garment worn by persons of rank).— διεζώσατο, girt on himself) Peter [did so, because he] reverenced the presence of the Lord, whereas he had been previously engaged with his fellow-disciples in a more familiar manner.— γυμνὸς) He had script off (whilst fishing with his fellow-disciples) τὸν ἐπενδύτην.(401)ἔβαλεν ἑαυτὸν εἰς τὴν θάλασσαν, he cast himself into the sea) being likely to reach the Lord sooner by swimming than by ship. Comp. Matthew 14:28, “Peter said, Lord, if it be Thou, bid me come unto Thee on the water.”(402) The love of Jesus draws one through fires and waves.

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on John 21:7". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/john-21.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

There is a great dispute amongst critical writers what this

fisher’s coat was; whether a loose coat, or the garment next his skin, or a fisherman’s slop. It is a point not worth the disputing: it was some garment that might modestly cover him when he came to Jesus, and yet not hinder him in his swimming.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on John 21:7". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/john-21.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

ученик, которого любил Иисус Иоанн сразу же узнал в незнакомце воскресшего Господа, потому что только у Него было такое сверхъестественное знание и власть (ст. 6). Петр эмоционально выпрыгнул и был первым, чтобы увидеть Господа.

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on John 21:7". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/john-21.html.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

That disciple; John.

Was naked; without his outer garment, as was common with fishermen.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/john-21.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

7.Therefore—The similarity of the transaction to the former miraculous draught of fishes now awakens in John a closer scrutiny of the stranger’s person, and he pronounces It is the Lord. Faith often produces love, and love often produces faith. Faith and love produce in John but a regular action; in impulsive Peter they work a bold irregular performance.

His fisher’s coat—A light, short, linen, armless frock, usually flung over the other dress or undress.

Naked—Undressed of his ordinary apparel; stripped to his waistcoat. So the word naked is used in both classical and biblical writings. (See note on Mark 14:52.) But Mr. Tristam encountered at or near this very spot a set of fishermen perfectedly naked. So oppressive are the government taxes that the fishermen, too poor to own boats, (but two boats are on the lake,) carry out their net lines by swimming out and back. But such a custom could not have existed at the flourishing period of John’s history.

Cast himself into the sea—The water is doubtless of a fordable depth, and Peter will wade or swim ashore to meet the Lord.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/john-21.html. 1874-1909.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘That disciple whom Jesus loved therefore says to Peter, “It is the Lord”.

John was one of those who had witnessed the similar event before and the conviction dawned on him that the man on the shore must be the risen Jesus. Note however his description of Jesus as ‘the Lord’. They had begun to think of Jesus in a new light. The reference to ‘the disciple whom Jesus loved’ is typically Johannine (compare John 13:23; John 19:26; John 20:2). It is to be seen as the awed statement of a man overwhelmed by the act that Jesus loved him

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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/john-21.html. 2013.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The reader has already suspected that "the disciple whom Jesus loved" was John himself. This identification fits because John was one of the disciples in the boat ( John 21:2). Again John realized something about Jesus before Peter did (cf. John 20:8). Probably he sensed that a miracle had happened, and he remembered that a few years earlier Jesus had performed a similar miracle ( Luke 5:1-11). True to the pictures we have of them in the New Testament, John exhibited quick insight and Peter quick action.

Peter had learned that John"s instincts about these things were better than his. He accepted John"s conclusion and jumped into the water. Apparently he wanted to get to Jesus faster than his boat and net, now full of fish, would allow. He showed no concern for the fish; he willingly let them go. His only desire was to get to Jesus.

Fishermen usually worked in their light undergarments (Gr. chiton, long shirts, not underwear). Peter evidently put his outer garment (Gr. ependytes) on so when he reached land he would be properly clothed albeit soaking wet. Normally people take unnecessary clothing off before going swimming. Peter"s somewhat irrational behavior seems to be another indication of his strong desire to get to Jesus quickly. He was again demonstrating his characteristic extravagant loyalty to his Lord (cf. John 20:6).

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/john-21.html. 2012.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

John 21:7. That disciple therefore whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. When Simon therefore, even Peter, heard that it was the Lord, he girt hip coat about him (for he was naked) and did cast himself into the sea. That the incident thus related of each of the two apostles is in closest harmony with everything else that we know of them strikes every reader. It need only be further noticed that John himself gives us a token of his desire that we should see in the action of Peter an illustration of that character which appeared in his whole subsequent career. He does not call him simply Simon Peter; but, as in chap. John 18:10, he interposes a word between the two names,—‘Simon, therefore, Peter.’ As soon as Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his coat about him, ‘for he was naked.’ There is no reason to think that the nakedness thus spoken of was absolute. The use of the term is consistent (in Greek as in the language of common life in Scotland to this day) with partial clothing. The girding is probably not to pass unnoticed. It was thus that at John 13:4-5, our Lord prepared Himself for service: His apostle, when preparing for the active service of his Master, must do the same.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/john-21.html. 1879-90.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

John 21:7. This sudden change of fortune John at once traced to its only possible source, . “Vita quieta citius observat res divinas quam activa.” Bengel. . The different temperaments of the two Apostles as here exhibited have constantly been remarked upon; as by Euthymius, “John had the keener insight; Peter the greater ardour”. Peter . Some writers identify the with the inner garment or , others suppose it was the outer garment or . And the reason assigned, , they say, is that he had only the . That one who was thus half-dressed might be called is well known (see Aristoph., Clouds, 480); but it was not the outer garment round which the belt was girt, but the inner. And besides, Peter must often have appeared before Jesus in their boat expeditions without his upper garment. And to put on his Tallith when about to plunge into the sea was out of the question. He was rowing, then, with as little on as possible, probably only a subligaculum or loin-cloth, and now picks up his , a garment worn by fishers (Theophylact), and girds it on, and casts himself into the sea.

 

 

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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on John 21:7". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/john-21.html. 1897-1910.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

It is the Lord. St. John Chrysostom says, we may here see the different characters of the two apostles, Peter and John; the former is more ardent, the latter more sublime; the first more vehement, the last more penetrating; for these reasons, John was the first to know Christ, Peter the first to hasten to him. (Hom. lxxxvi.)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on John 21:7". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/john-21.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

loved. Greek. agapao. App-135.

the Lord. App-98.

Now when = Therefore.

heard = having heard.

girt. Greek. diazonnumi. Only here and John 13:4, John 13:5.

his fisher"s coat = the upper garment. Greek. ependutes. Only here in N.T. Used in the Septuagint for the Hebrew meil, robe, in 1 Samuel 18:4. 2 Samuel 13:18.

naked. Greek gumnos. This means he had only his tunic or undergarment on. Compare Mark 14:51. Acts 19:16.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on John 21:7". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/john-21.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord - again having the advantage of his brother in quickness of recognition (see the note at John 20:8), to be followed, however, in Peter by an alacrity all his own.

Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat [unto] (or 'about') him, (for he was naked) - his vest only on, worn next to the body,

And did cast himself into the sea - the shallow part, not more than a hundred yards from the water's edge (John 21:8); not meaning therefore to swim, but to get sooner to Jesus than in the full boat, which they could hardly draw to shore.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/john-21.html. 1871-8.

The Bible Study New Testament

7. It is the Lord! The miracle helps John recognize Jesus. Peter, as usual, is the first to act. He jumps into the water!

 

 

 

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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on John 21:7". "The Bible Study New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/john-21.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(7) Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter.—Comp. Introduction, p 375. The traits of character which have before met us are exactly preserved here. John, true to the life of contemplation, is first to trace in the present draught of fishes an analogy with the earlier one, and to discern that the Master who spoke then is present now. Peter, true to the life of action, is first to rush into that Master’s presence when he is told that it is the Lord.

He girt his fisher’s coat unto him (for he was naked).—That is, as the words in the original clearly imply, he put on, and girded round his body the garment which workmen customarily used. This seems to have been a kind of linen frock worn over the shirt, and the Talmud has adopted the Greek word here used to express it. The word occurs nowhere else in the New Testament, and the rendering “fisher’s coat” probably gives a correct idea of what is meant.

The common usage of the Greek and Hebrew words answering to the English word “naked,” makes it probable that St. Peter was wearing some under-garment, and that reverence for the Lord, into whose presence he is about to go, led him to add to this the outer frock. (Comp. Acts 19:12.)

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/john-21.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.
that disciple
20,24; 13:23; 19:26; 20:2
It is
20:20,28; Psalms 118:23; Mark 11:3; Luke 2:11; Acts 2:36; 10:36; 1 Corinthians 15:47; James 2:1
when
Song of Solomon 8:7; Matthew 14:28,29; Luke 7:47; 2 Corinthians 5:14
fisher's coat
Or, upper coat, great coat, or, surtout, [ependutes (eÍpendu/thv)] from [epi (eÍpið)] upon, and [enduo (eÍndu/w)] I clothe.
naked
That is, he was only in his vest, or under garment; for [gumnos (gumno/v)] naked, like the Hebrew arom, is frequently applied to one who has merely laid aside his outer garment. See 1 Sa 19:24; 2 Sa 6:20, on which see the note. To which may be added what we read in the LXX, Job 22:6, "Thou has taken away the covering of the naked," [amphiazo] the plaid, or blanket, in which they wrapped themselves, and besides they had no other. In this sense Virgil says, Nudus ara, sere nudus, "plough naked, and sow naked," i.e., strip off your upper garments.
Reciprocal: Isaiah 20:2 - naked;  John 11:28 - and called;  John 16:22 - But;  John 20:6 - GeneralJohn 20:25 - We;  John 21:15 - more;  Acts 3:1 - Peter

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on John 21:7". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/john-21.html.

Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms

Ver. 7. "Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now, when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him (for he was naked), and did cast himself into the sea."

The thoughtful John first recognises the Lord; the energetic Peter, who on another occasion. Matthew 14:28, said, "Lord, if it be Thou, bid me come unto Thee on the water," casts himself into the sea to reach Him. We see here that the primacy of Peter had its limits, that it extended no further than the energy of action came into consideration. As here, so certainly in later times, he heard John, and in many things listened to him in his Christian vocation. ὁ κύριός: John so designates Jesus before His resurrection only twice: comp. on ch. John 13:23. Thus he names the risen Saviour also in ch. John 20:18; John 20:20; John 20:25; John 20:28, and several times in the sequel of this chapter. διαζώννυμι occurs in John only here and ch. John 13:4-5. The middle voice signifies "Gird oneself." τὸν ἐπενδύτην is the accusative of closer definition, so frequent in Hebrew: comp. τὸν ἀριθμόν, ch. John 6:10 (Winer). It does not mean that he drew on the garment, but that he girded himself in it: therefore he was already clothed with it. "He was naked" explains this girding: the connection shows with what restriction we must take the "naked." It can refer only to the circumstance that Peter was not provided with the outside garment, the ὑποδύτης. The ἐπενδύτης (comp. ἐπενδύσασθαι, superinducere, 2 Corinthians 5:4) intimates by its very name that it took a subordinate place in the clothing. That naked stands often for slight clothing, needs no further demonstration: Grotius has done all that is necessary to show that the idea of absolute nakedness is to be repelled, even if Genesis 3:7; Genesis 3:21 were not sufficient. Peter had on him a mere wrapper. Theophylact says, "a linen shirt, such as the Phoenician and Syrian fishermen were wont to wear." This in his labour he had worn ungirt; but now he girded himself, the better to swim. Swimming is suggested by the "throwing himself into the sea." As to any further preparation of his person in order to appear fitly before the Lord, the text says nothing, whatever the expositors may say.

The Apostle enters into this detail because this sudden decision of Peter symbolized the gift which was afterwards developed in the government of the Church. With the same impetuous promptitude with which he threw himself into the Galilean sea, he afterwards threw himself into the sea of the world. Always to be first, not to leave the initiative to others, and even to restrain those who take it, seems to be one of the first marks of a vocation to govern the Church. Our verse might be applied to the present spirit of church government in evangelical Germany. It cannot be in this respect according to the heart of Jesus; were it so. He could not have placed Peter at the head of His Apostles.

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Hengstenberg, Ernst. "Commentary on John 21:7". Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/heg/john-21.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

7.Therefore the disciple whom Jesus loved saith to Peter. The Evangelist shows, by his example, that it is our duty to raise our hearts to God, whenever we succeed in any thing beyond our expectation; because we ought instantly to remember that this act of kindness has flowed from the favor of Him who is the Author of every blessing. That holy recognition of the grace of God, which dwelt in the heart of John, led him also to the knowledge of Christ; for he does not perceive Christ with his eyes, but, being convinced that the great multitude of fishes has been brought to him by the hand of God, he concludes that it was Christ who had guided his hands. But, as John goes before Peter in faith, so Peter afterwards excels him in zeal, when, disregarding personal danger, he throws himself into the lake. The rest follow in the ship. True, all come to Christ at length, but Peter is actuated by a peculiar zeal in comparison of the others. Whether he crossed over to the shore by walking or by swimming, is uncertain; but let us rest satisfied with knowing that the act of leaving the ship and going on shore was not the result of folly and rashness, but that he advanced beyond the others in proportion to his zeal.

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 21:7". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-21.html. 1840-57.