Summary: Jesus miracle of feeding the 5,000 demonstrates some of the Steps of Salvation found in Romans 8:28-31: This miracle turned away some followers, but not those He had chosen.
“Goodies, Goals, and Gimmicks”
It is about time for some of us to be thinking about lunch and in our message for today, there were more than 5,000 people looking for lunch as Jesus was speaking. If your stomachs are empty this morning, we’re not offering free lunches today (we did that last week!), but if your hearts and souls are empty, then God does have something to offer you.
We have been looking at Romans 8 and finished with verses 29-31( Pay attention to the subjects in these verses): “ For those GOD foreknew HE also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that HE might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those HE predestined, HE also called; those HE called, HE also justified; those HE justified, HE also glorified. 31 What, then, shall we say in response to this? If GOD is for us, who can be against us?” I put those theological words (foreknew, predestined, conformed, called, justified, and glorified) in your outlines, and I want to read a “Jesus story” from John 6:
Feeding 5,000 Plus
1 “After these things Jesus went away to the other side of the Sea of Galilee (or Tiberias ). 2 A large crowd followed Him, because they saw the signs which He was PERFORMING on those who were sick. 3 Then Jesus went up on the mountain, and there He sat down with His disciples. 4 Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was near. 5 Therefore Jesus, lifting up His eyes and seeing that a large crowd was coming to Him, said to Philip, "Where are we to buy bread, so that these may eat ?" 6 This He was saying to test him, for He Himself knew what He was intending to do. (Jesus FOREKNEW the need, He knew the people, He knew how many, He knew HOW He would provide, and MAKE NO MISTAKE AT ALL: HE KNEW the reaction of the people beforehand! He knew Philip. He HIMSELF KNEW!)
7 Philip answered Him, "Two hundred denarii (7 months wages) worth of bread is not sufficient (to be SATIISFIED) for them, for everyone to receive a little." 8 One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to Him, 9 "There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are these for so many people ?" 10 Jesus said, "Have the people sit down." Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. ( It was like a Mega Church! That was just the number of MEN!)
11 Jesus then took the loaves, and having given thanks, (We all know that word “thanks”-“eucharisteô”, the root word is GRACE; WE are thankful because we have received much. That’s where we get the word “eucharist’.) He distributed to those who were seated; likewise also of the fish as much as they wanted. 12 When they were filled, He said to His disciples, "GATHER UP THE leftover fragments so that nothing will be LOST." (Look at those underlined words: GATHER UP THE LOST. That is exactly why Jesus came. Luke 19:10 says: "For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost." God will NEVER ALLOW HIS MIRACLE of Grace to go to waste. All that are EFFECTIVELY CALLED by God will be GATHERED up. None will be lost!)
13 So they gathered them up, and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves which were left over by those who had eaten. 14 Therefore when the people saw the sign which He had performed, they said, "This is TRULY the Prophet who is to come into the world." (THE MIRACLES of Jesus are impossible not to notice. His CALL of the GOSPEL is undeniably from God! If you “don’t get it”, it is not God’s fault. It is not that God doesn’t make it clear! The FAULT of NOT FOLLOWING or not BELIEVING is not God’s FAULT. The sin in YOU, your sinful heart is the culprit, not God’s)
15 So Jesus, perceiving that they were intending to come and take Him by force to make Him king, withdrew again to the mountain by Himself alone. (Jesus knows the INTENTIONS of man’s evil hearts BECAUSE He is sent from God, God’s one and ONLY SON, the TRUE PROPHET come from God. He KNEW that the intent of the people’s heart was not in line with God’s will and purpose, so HE WITHDREW. The word for “perceiving” was the Jewish idiom for sexual intercourse between a man and a woman-to have INTIMATE and THOROUGH KNOWLEDGE)
The other word to consider is “by FORCE”. “By force” is what the enemy usually does. It is translated as “snatch out” in John 10:27: "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish ; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29"My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all ; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30"I and the Father are one." ( No one forces God to do anything.)