Sunday, December 5, 2010

Feeding 5000

The feeding of the 5000 in John 6 is also in the other three gospels. One of the only two miracles that are recorded into all the gospels. It is one of the main miracles to fulfill Deuteronomy 18:15 to show that Jesus was that prophet sent from God greater than Moses.  It also demonstrates God's giving nature. He didn't give to some and not others. All present were filled and satisfied. This really ministers to me in regards to the gospel. I have to question my motives as to why do I sometimes share with a select one or two but not others. I like how God turns to Phillip who is a native of the area and would know best the logistics of engaging in this ministry. Often times we take our ministries to the limits of our resources and then stop because we have no more. God wants to do more but we can stop and stifle what God wants to do. We had an experience one time where because of the facility that was not large enough people were turned away due to logistics. The people turned away were heart broken and had very limited to no more contact with us after that. Those that were invited only 1/2 came and there was plenty of food and plenty of room. Our limitations are God's limitations. Jesus could do no great work there, in Nazareth, because of Unbelief. Jesus tells the man to only believe, to which the man's reply is I do believe but help my unbelief. Which is a round about way saying I want to believe but my faith is weak. When the disciples obeyed Jesus they just went about the logistics of grouping the people and having them sit and then appropriating baskets and ready for the Lord to work and then the miracle happened. It wasn't based on their work but I believe because they obey and were faithful God did the real work. They got to participate in the work. God doesn't need any help but often he deliberately restrains his work until he has our participation. We can protest and say like Andrew there just isn't much here to work with I don't see the possibility.  Yes with man it is impossible but with God all things are possible.  

It is the Christmas season our activities get way too busy and out of control that we do loose sight of the One we are trying to honor. Let's keep our eyes and ears open to what God wants to do this season and obey him. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at the miracles of love and feasting that happen. What a thrill and joy it is to serve our Lord Jesus Christ. He loved so radically he touched more deeply he spoke more boldly than any man to date. If we go in his strength we can expect God to do something. The fun part is you don't know what he wants to do but you just do it and wow God is so good. It could be as simply as feeding one or maybe as amazing as 5000.

A note of interest to me is that the barley loaves used were not considered a high quality. The Talmud records it as horse food. But beside that the seed is crushed and flour is made and then baked.  No one in the history of the universe has ever been able to plant a handful of flour and get a crop. But how much more silly for someone to plant a loaf of bread in the ground and expect it to yield. But the person who eats the bread of life Jesus, which means we digest into our heart the word of God, we will see as it goes our of our mouths multiplied in the hearing of those around us. This may be the season to share gifts but I want to pose a challenge for us to try sharing scripture into the hearing of our family. Not our platitudes or opinions but hard core Bible verses and see what God does. I have so many say, "the Bible really says that?" and then I show them and they are surprised. Jesus was crushed and buried and is the fruit of eternal life. How can we expect our family and friends to come to salvation when we are not planting the Bread of Life into their heart. This Christmas give everyone a slice of the Bread of Life and see what happens.

John 6:51
I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.

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