Jesus Feeds the Crowd

GUWG-Loaves-FishWe continue our journey into every word spoken by Jesus in the Gospels to help us all KNOW JESUS MORE NOW.

Today we’ll discuss the only miracle recorded in all four gospels.

After Jesus’ disciples returned from their mission, they gathered around him and reported all that they had done.  Then they all got into a boat, crossed the Sea of Galilee and headed for a remote place near a town called Bethsaida.

But people followed them on foot. By the time Jesus and the disciples reached the shore, a huge crowd had gathered and was waiting for them. Jesus had compassion on them, taught them about the Kingdom of God and healed the sick.

As evening approached, the disciples came to him:

“This is a remote place,” they said, “and it’s already very late. Send the people away so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.”

Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.” He said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.

Philip answered him, “It would take more than half a year’s wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!”

“How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked. “Go and see.”

Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up, “Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go?”

“Bring them here to me,” Jesus said.

Then he said, “Have the people sit down in groups of about fifty each.” The disciples did so and everyone sat down on the green grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke them. Then he gave them to the disciples to distribute to the people. When they had all had enough to eat and were satisfied, Jesus said to his disciples, “Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.” So they gathered them and filled twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.

After the people saw the sign Jesus performed, they began to say, “Surely this is the Prophet who is to come into the world.” Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself.

(Matthew 14:13-21; Mark 6:32-44; Luke 9:10-17; John 6:5-13)

Let’s look at our 2 BIG Questions:

1. Who exactly is Jesus?

Jesus once again graphically demonstrates that he is the Messiah — “the Prophet who is to come into the world.” He proclaimed the coming of God’s Kingdom in both words and actions. He healed many and then miraculously fed the hungry crowd.

But most seem to have missed the spiritual significance of what he was doing. He’s the eternal Bread of Life that feeds our very souls but the people were more interested in someone who would meet their immediate physical and political needs. So they tried to make him king by force. That wasn’t God’s plan so Jesus slipped away.

2. What exactly should we do?

Come to Jesus and trust him for your daily bread — both physical and spiritual. Only he truly satisfies.

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