Feeding the 5000
Pastor Jacob shared with us about Jesus feeding the multitudes. Sermon from 7/19/2020
Sunday July 19th
The Board and I are still working on setting a Vision and shifting into a forward gear, and we will keep everyone updated every step of the way.
How did everyone feel about the weekly Bible study worksheet? And Thursday Videos?
If enough people liked it, we’ll continue to create them!
The manuscripts that I write and read from on Sunday mornings, are all published on our website
So if you want to read through past messages, head that way.
We’ll be having another “Free Community Meal” coming up, as soon as I can move around without crutches, or as my daughter calls them “crunches”.
Sunday School will be starting back up in September, and we’ll be keeping the dividers on the pews as long as possible.
If were going to have Service here in the Community Center again, ill makes sure to keep everyone updated, and have the words to the worship songs printed off, along with the Bible Verses that our Sermon will be coming from.
Weve talked about Jesus:
Turning water into wine
Healing a woman with an issue of blood
And bringing a girl back from the dead
Weve talked about the fact that while He performed these miracles for the immediate, results that would come from them----there is always a deeper meaning to what He does that kind of highlights the truth of who He is.
Today, we’ll be talking about a miracle that is pretty popular, that i’m sure you all have heard before.
Jesus feeds the multitudes.
Perhaps this is a story youve heard a million times before
Youve heard all the sermons
Youve heard all the analogies
If thats the case, and youve heard this story told to death…. Then I wont throw things at you if you fall asleep
This miracle, Jesus feeding the Multitude, is actually the only miracle, apart from Jesus rising from the dead, that is recorded in all 4 of the Gospels.
Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John -- all give an account of this miracle, and as we said last week, its no accident what was written in Scripture.
Today we’ll be looking at Mark’s point of view, but we’ll also mention John’s as well.
Ill be reading from the NIV
30 The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all they had done and taught. 31 Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” 32 So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place. 33 But many who saw them leaving recognized them and ran on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them. 34 When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things. 35 By this time it was late in the day, so his disciples came to him. “This is a remote place,” they said, “and it’s already very late. 36 Send the people away so that they can go to the surrounding countryside and villages and buy themselves something to eat.” 37 But he answered, “You give them something to eat.” They said to him, “That would take more than half a year’s wages! Are we to go and spend that much on bread and give it to them to eat?” 38 “How many loaves do you have?” he asked. “Go and see.” When they found out, they said, “Five—and two fish.” 39 Then Jesus directed them to have all the people sit down in groups on the green grass. 40 So they sat down in groups of hundreds and fifties. 41 Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to his disciples to distribute to the people. He also divided the two fish among them all. 42 They all ate and were satisfied, 43 and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces of bread and fish. 44 The number of the men who had eaten was five thousand.”
( → → Opening prayer ← ← )
Now this, is actually the first time that Jesus feeds a multitude miraculously
He feeds the 5000 here in these verses,
And a bunch of verses later, He feeds another multitude of about 4000
There a whole study that we could do about the differences between them and what the differences can teach us, but thats not what were talking about today.
Now if you noticed, it said that the number of men who had eaten, was about 5000
This number doesnt include women and children
So if every man had a wife, and each couple had 1 child, that would put the number to about 15,000 people.
15,000 people Jesus fed with 5 loaves and 2 fish.
Now right away, something sticks out about this miracle
The other miracles were all either private, or only witnessed by a small number of people
A family, a village, His disciples
But this one, was not only witnessed by more than quadruple the population of Clyde and Savannah, the people who witnessed it…... were also participants of it.
They ate the bread and fish
They grouped together, with friends and families, sat in the shade and on the grass, and fellowshipped together.
Laughing, joking, sharing, and partaking in all of those feelings and emotions that accompany a family meal
This was a super public, over the top, miracle.
15000 eye witnesses
15000 people partook and shared in this creative miracle
5 loaves of barley bread, the stuff that poor people who couldnt afford wheat
And 2 fish which were probably about the size of sardines, and pickled so they could last a few days
And He created meat and bread where there was none before
He would break off a piece of fish, or bread, hand it to His disciple, and the fish or bread wouldnt get any smaller
God did something that has no logical or human explanation as to how it could have happened, thusly it was a miracle.
No excuses or work arounds could achieve this.
No con man
No slight of hand could produce this amount of food
It would have taken hundreds of pounds of barley and hundreds of ovens working around the clock to produce enough bread to feed 15000 people
Can you imagine the amount of sardines needed to not only feed 15000 people, but to feed them till they had their fill and to have 12 full baskets leftover?
Were talking tens of thousands of pounds of fish
The point im making, is that this miracle was unlike the other ones
Thousands and thousands of participants and eye witnesses
AND recorded in all 4 gospels
This miracle sticks out.
And because this miracle sticks out, we should pay special attention to what Jesus says, what He does, and how He does it.
We should normally, but when there is something like this that sticks out, a light bulb should go off in our head that says “pay attention!”
And when we do pay extra attention to what Jesus says and does, the first thing that we see come up, is in verse 34
34 When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things.
Sheep without a shepherd.
Sheep without a shepherd, will eat whatever they come across, if its dangerous, poisonous, if its healthy grass or stubble
Sheep without a shepherd, will wander into strange territory and end up surrounded by enemies and dangers
Sheep without a shepherd, will follow each other into danger….even following eachother off of a cliff
Sheep without a shepherd, will get themselves in trouble, get sick, get hurt, get lost, and wont be able to get back home by themselves
This is what Jesus saw when He saw the 15000 people gathered there waiting for Him.
He saw people who would spiritually wander
He saw people who would consume dangerous teachings
He saw people who could be deceived by these dangerous teachings, and be led into trouble and danger
He saw people who would follow one another into dangerous territory
He saw people who needed a shepherd
To keep them safe
To lead them to where healthy teachings were
He saw people who needed a shepherd that would protect them from dangerous teachings and lead them home when the time came
So what does the verse say He did?
Did He immediately sit down and start feeding them? → no.
Did He make sure to make eye contact with every single person and hug them all? → no.
Matthew says: “he had compassion on them and healed their sick.”
Our verses this morning from Mark say: “So he began teaching them many things”
Luke says: “He … spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who needed healing.”
They were sheep without a shepherd-------> so “He began teaching them many things”
He did this, because sheep without a shepherd, need to be taught.
They needed to be warned of the dangers that await their wanderings
They needed direction and vision and hope
They needed to be told that the false religion of the pharisees was a trap
Sheep without a shepherd need to be taught about who Jesus is.
So when we go out into the world, and we meet sheep without a shepherd, this is what is what we must do → → → if we want to model our life after Jesus.
When we see people in need, we tell them about Jesus
When we see people giving into something dangerous, we tell them about the things of God
When we see people drinking the poison that this world and this culture offers them, we warn them about it
When we see people held down by their past, we tell them about the hope that lies nowhere but Christ
When we see people imprisoned in depression and anxiety, we teach them about the freedom that comes from a relationship with Jesus
When we see people afraid of the uncertainty of the future, we teach them about the God who wrote the future
When we see people lost and wandering, giving in to dangerous things because they have nowhere else to turn, we teach them about the God who wont reject any who turn to Him
When we see people without a shepherd, we take Jesus as our example, and teach them about the God who loved them so much that He sent His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.
So thats it then, right?
Jesus sat them all down, taught a lesson, gave them a multiple choice, fill in the blank test, and that’s the end of the story.
Theres a common saying, thats not mine, so dont give me any credit. It goes something like this:
“People wont care how much know → → → until they know how much you care.”
Jesus was moved with compassion when He saw the people, so the first thing He did was teach them.
This cant be understated.
Accurately teaching what Scriptures says about life, is one of the most important and loving things you can do for someone----- but Jesus did more than that.
He fed them
He performed the miracle that we read about
He put His words into action and showed in a physical way that He cared for the people He taught.
He wasnt some lofty philosopher who just sat around thinking all day
He was a down in the dirt, boots on the ground,
Talk the talk and walk the walk teacher
He taught people about how much God loves them, and then He proved it with His actions.
We are called to do the same.
If all we do is regurgitate Bible Verses, but dont apply them to our life and live them out → then we will have no effect
If we claim “oh im just the preachin truth, if you get hurt by it, it aint my fault” without understanding that our behavior and lifestyle can discredit our words, then we arent modeling Jesus to a hurting world
If we can talk the talk, and say and speak and know and memorize all the right things-----but we wont go out of our way to actually, physically, help those in need-------if we dont walk the walk, then our words are nothing but ash and dust
Let the truth that lives within you, be audibly proclaimed to the shepherdless.
Memorize Scripture, for your own personal benefit because it will draw you closer to God, and for the benefit of the lost.
Speak it from the highest mountains and the lowest sewers.
Teach people what the Bible says -------- and then live it.
In front of people
Live your faith in front of 15,000 people, so that they will spend brain and heart energy to understand the words that you spoke to them
In closing though, that brings up a pretty big thought, doesnt it?
Something that should make you think:
“well….wait a minute...thats all well and good”
“I can memorize Bible verses”
“I can tell people about Jesus when theyre lost and hurting”
“I can tell people that Jesus loves them through thick and thin”
“But if were going to take this story into consideration…...I cant perform miracles”
“I can volunteer and tithe and donate and help and give and be polite and nice and do all these kinds of human things…..but I cant perform a miracle.”
My response, is going to be what happened in Scripture?
The other Gospels tell us that it was A young boy who gave Jesus all he had, and as a result, Jesus worked a miracle that showed 15000 eye witnesses the love of God, in action.
So what can you give to Him?
What can you offer Jesus when there are people in need? // What stirs up your heart? // What makes you different than everyone else?
What lights such a fire in your thinking, that when that topic is brought up, you start firing on all cylinders?
What are you good at? // What do you like to do? // What makes you...you?
What can you do, that will make a difference?
When there are people in need, and God comes to YOU, what will you give Him?
You may be thinking 2 different thoughts now:
#1 - I cant do anything.
Theres nothing I can do, that someone else isnt better at than I am
My skills and talents and ideas, arent special or important
Im not special or important
Theres nothing about me that God would ever use
The problems I see in this world are too big for me
Yeah I have ideas and plans and I can do some things that might make a difference, but….
Im just ...me… how can I have any impact on the stuff I see and read on the news every day?
Theres murder and hate and racism and bigorty flowing through our streets like a dam is about to break------how can I do anything about it?
I have a response to each of those thoughts
When you think that you are nothing, and that theres nothing special about you
I want to remind you that you are so special that Jesus was willing to die to save you and put you to work
Whatever YOU can offer to God, if its 5 loaves and 2 fish, or if its even less…
Whatever YOU can bring to God, is something that NO ONE ELSE can bring.
Because no one else is YOU
Your ideas and actions are special and important
You-- are special and important
You were made on purpose, intentionally
YOU were made with talents and skills and a passion in your heart, that God didnt put in anyone else
Bring God your loaves and fish
Bring Him your life savings --- if its half a penny or half a million
Give Him your favorite hobby
Give Him your most refined and practiced skill
Give Him your words if you are an author
Your art if you are an artist
Your moves if you are a dancer
Your drive if you are an athlete
Your spreadsheets if you are an accountant
Your voice if you are a singer or speaker
Your fields if you are a farmer
Your jokes if you are a comedian
Your ideas if they havent come to fruition yet
Give Him The work of your hands
Give Him The work of your heart
Give Him all of these things----- and He will multiply them, and use them to bring people to Himself.
What you bring to God, will be the tool that He uses to bring people to know Him and be saved.
When the darkness and sin in this world, seems to be winning against the light, and you feel as if all of that stuff I just listed cant have an impact
When youve given God everything in your life, but there are still unbelievers in your life that dont know Him, and you cry out for their soul so that they may be saved
When you have lived your faith, out loud, and in front of other people, but nothing seems to be changing
I’d like to point you to the words of
“Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. 36 But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. 37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.”
Let the words of your mouth, and the actions of your body, point people to the bread of life, and He will never drive away any who come to Him.
( → → Closing prayer ← ← )