The Miraculous Draught of Fishes
by Rosemarie Adcock
The Miraculous Draught of Fishes was awarded First Place in the 2019 Illinois State Fair in the painting category of the Professional Arts Exhibition.
This painting by Rosemarie Adcock depicts the events after Jesus died, when the Apostles were devastated and alone. All of their hopes and plans were shattered. Although He told them He would die and be raised again after 3 days, they didn’t fully understand what He was talking about, and it came as a shock to them all.
Peter, who was a fisherman by trade, decided to go fishing again, and some of the disciples went out with him, but that night they caught nothing. The account in John 21 follows:
“Just as day was breaking, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to them, ‘Children, do you have any fish?’ They answered him, ‘No.’ He said to them, ‘Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.’ So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in, because of the quantity of fish. That disciple whom Jesus loved therefore said to Peter, “It is the Lord!”
The painting depicts the moment at dawn when Peter realizes that everything Jesus promised was actually true. The moment of shock, of joy, of disbelief, yet here were 153 fish after they had exhausted themselves, worked all night, and caught nothing.
The disciples then went to the shore and ate with Jesus, but they didn’t dare ask who He was because somehow they actually knew. Jesus then called Peter to service, asking him three times, “Do you love Me?” using different words for love each time. It was an important moment for Peter because of the three times Peter denied even knowing Jesus when He was arrested and crucified. At the dawn of this new day after the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus, the disciples had a new purpose for their lives, to be “fishers of men.”