IT WAS HUGE! THE BIGGEST! Maybe, the BEST? But, most definitely the most noted of Jesus’ miracles in the Bible. The Feeding of the 5000 is the only miracle of Jesus that was put into all four of the Gospels. To be in all four books lends me to believe that God really wanted us to draw out some significance of this unique and amazing miracle.
In class, we read through all four accounts and recalled where we all were on 9/11/2001 when the WTC was attacked and tumbled. Just as the day “the shot heard round the world” when JFK was shot and killed, the morning of September 11, 2001 is just one day that no one is likely to forget. We all were watching the same events unfold right before our eyes, yet there were so many different accounts of where we were, how it made us feel, etc. It must have been the same for Jesus’ disciples during this period.
Here are the passages where you can locate this story in all four books. It is great to read them back to back and see some different conclusions from each of the disciples accounts of the same event.
- Matthew 14:13-21
- Mark 6:30-44
- Luke 9: 10-17
- John 6:1-14
Some things we took away on these passages were observances such as:
Jesus does not like waste and He gives more than we need – This was proven in all four of the accounts when it clearly stated that there were plenty of leftovers and leftovers in abundance.
Humans doubt. The disciples had just been given authority through Jesus to go out and perform miracles in His name directly before this miracle took place. When they all came back together after those journeys, this is where this story begins. Yet, the disciples continue to doubt. They are astonished and find it hard to believe that Jesus can feed all of those people from one little boy’s lunch. They had just had the powers of God themselves, yet they couldn’t believe what they witnessed. We all must be weighed down in doubt, even in our faith, we continue to doubt the things God can do. Remember, with God all things are possible!
Jesus gives thanks and displays the bread being broken. This could easily be foreshadowing his own broken body on the cross and how he looked up to our Father in heaven at that time too.
We were able to tie this to the Old Testament by locating a similar story that had taken place many years before this miracle. It is an account of the servant Elisha, who was Elijah’s understudy, in the book of 2 Kings and found in chapter 4 verses 42 -44 which reads:
“A man came from Baal Shalishah, bringing the man of God twenty loaves of barley bred baked from the first ripe grain, along with some heads of new grain. “Give it to the people to eat,” Elisha said.
“How can I set this before a hundred men?” his servant asked.
But Elisha answered, “Give it to the people to eat. For this is what the Lord says: ‘They will ear and have some left over.’ ” Then he set it before them, and they ate and had some left over, according to the word of the Lord.
God certainly does work in mysterious ways. Jesus always was mysterious as He makes us to think through his parables, the significance of living of Christian life and how He provides for us on our journey.
Coming Up Next: Jesus and Water Miracles
See you then and may God bless you!