OK, Jesus created matter from nothing! I’m not going to get into the science of this, (because I don’t have a clue how he did it), but it is evident from this section of scripture that Jesus did exactly this. For hundreds of years alchemists have tried to transform matter such as base metals into gold, but without success. Jesus though took a few loaves of bread and some small fish and transformed them into a feast that fed five thousand people.
Feeding the Five Thousand
There is no doubt that this was not a difficult task for Jesus. He had the power and authority as well as the understanding of how to do a miracle such as this.
The people recognised it for the miracle that it was, and in another version of this event they were going to take him by force to make him king! Amazing what people will do for a good feed sometimes!
But the reasons why Jesus fed the people were several. First they were a long way from anywhere they could get food and he was concerned for them that they might faint for lack of food on the way to a town. Second he did it because he cared for the people in all aspects of their lives, not just the spiritual dimension but the physical also. Third, he was manifesting this sign to back up the teaching that he had just given them for he was preaching the word of God and this sign confirmed it WAS the word of God.
A More Important Reason for the Sign
But there is another reason why Jesus performed this sign. In another version he said, “Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of man will give to you; for on him has God the Father set his seal.” (John 6:27)
The people were being fed the spiritual bread and the food that would lead to eternal life, which are the teachings of Christ. Jesus tells them not to chase after the things of this world, the food and all of the things that perish in this life. Instead he told them to seek the bread of life, the teachings the will lead to eternal life with Christ. This is the food and the most valuable thing in this world that we should strive after.
Jesus Welcomed the People
There is another point in this scripture worth noting and that is the attitude of Jesus. He had gone aside with the disciples to this lonely place for rest, but when the people heard where he was they came to him.
He was constantly being followed by the people for they could not get enough of his teaching and seeing the signs he performed. It must have been difficult for there was nowhere he could escape to from this constant press of people.
But was he annoyed? Did he tell them to go away and come another time? Did he try to hide from the people or use the disciples as a personal bodyguard to keep the people away as celebrities do today? No, he did none of those things.
We see in verse 11 that when the crowds came to him he welcomed them. He did this because they needed the word of God, as do people today. They were helpless and he describes the people in this way:
“When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” (Matthew 9:36-38)
Sheep without a shepherd. Harassed by the religious leaders and the rulers of the day and nowhere to turn for comfort or salvation…until Jesus came along. He did not reject or seek to be separate from the people. He taught them and comforted them. He fed them physical and spiritual food. He healed their sick, cast out demons, raised their dead and most important of all…he gave them hope.
What the World Needs Today
The world today is no different. We may not be able to feed the five thousand as Jesus did, but we can still give those around us hope. When you consider the problems and issues in the world, is it any wonder people suffer. Economic woes, crash of the monetary systems, crime, wars, escalating immorality, authority undermined and governments that seem impotent to change anything.
But in Christ Jesus we have hope for a better life both here and later on. In Christ we see that the issues and problems of this world do have answers and they are occurring for a reason. Many of these issues were foretold in prophecy thousands of years ago and as a result, when armed with the knowledge of God’s plan, we have hope and do not fear as the world does. Your faith will carry you through all things so look to Jesus and you will receive salvation.
(Clipart sourced from ChristiansUnite.com http://clipart.christiansunite.com/)