Summary: Picture # 7 in series: The 14 Candid Snapshots of the Maturing Christian as found in the Gospel of John. The Feeding of the 5,000 is the picture of Jesus as the Bread of Life, and how the maturing Christian feeds on the Bread of Life.
Picture # 7: Jesus is the Bread of Life John 6:1-15.
See Matthew 14:13-21
See Mark 6:30-44
See Luke 9:10-17
Up to 26 million people in the United States, and over 800 million people in developing and underdeveloped countries go without adequate food on a regular basis.
Every single minute, at least 16 people in our world die of complications related to hunger!
The saddest of all is the toll that hunger takes upon children and the elderly.
Rather than stirring us to Christian action, the complexity of world hunger often leads us to divert our attention to other matters, and we often feel overwhelmed when we encounter people in need.
We wish the situation of world hunger would go away, and we often feel powerless to help.
It is of worth to note that this past week, American military troops have been dropping at least 37,000 daily rations to the starving people in Afganistan.
A Christian believer needs daily spiritual food, as seen in the Feeding of the Five Thousand.
Millions of people can feed and grow in Christ, and the feeding of more than 5,000 people is a candid snapshot of the maturing Christian feeding on the Bread of Life.
We find in II Peter 3:18, “But grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and forever! Amen.”
Jesus wants us to be comfortable as we grow in His Bread of Life.
“Jesus said, `Have the people sit down…’”(that’s comfortable that Jesus wants us to sit down where there was plenty of green grass to feed on the Bread of Life).
You know I spend a lot of time in study throughout the week in my preparing of sermons and Bible study.
I’m a firm believer that if the pastor is willing to put forth the effort to study God’s Word, then God will use the pastor to feed the people.
The person who is material minded and out for self-gain wants to unite with the local church for personal gain, (John 6:26), but if we want to mature as Christians, we must have the Bread of Life and feed on Jesus.
Life is a humbling experience!
A five year old can teach you a lot about life.
A 5 year old was sitting with her grandfather in the den of her grandfather’s home one day, and she asked her grandfather, “Grandpa, did God make you?”
“Yes, God made me!” her grandfather replied.
The 5-year-old girl paused for a moment and then she asked, “Grandpa, did God make me too?”
Again the grandfather replied, “Yes, God made you too!”
Then the 5-year-old girl went to look in the mirror.
When she returned, she looked her grandpa in the face and said, “Grandpa, you know, God is doing a whole lot better work lately!”
Read John 6:1-15; verses 32-35.
It may surprise you to know that this is the only miracle of Jesus to be recorded in all 4 Gospels.
Perhaps the first miracle in this candid snapshot of the maturing Christian is the fact that Andrew noticed the little lad with his packed lunch of 5 loaves of barley and 2 fishes.
When I was growing up, my father loved to take me fishing.
Many times we went to Lake Santee, South Carolina to what is known as "Stump Hole Landing" for an all day fishing outing.
What did we take for lunch?
Sardines packed in mustard sauce, some bread or crackers, and some Coke in the small 8 oz. bottles; and I liked Ne-hi Grape, True-Aid Orange and a Honey Bun.
So, I can identify with this little boy’s lunch of 2 fish and 5 pieces of bread that his mother must have packed for him that day as he hurried out of his home to go see Jesus.
He had himself a delicious sardine sandwich!
The second miracle I see in this candid snapshot of the maturing Christian is the fact that the little boy was willing to give over his lunch.
He must have already heard about Jesus and the fact that Jesus could do amazing things.
So we see a third miracle here.
We see that with people like you and me, who have very little to offer to our Savior, God is able to appropriate great and powerful miracles when we are willing to be used as His instruments.
A critical truth here is that Jesus is always able to use what we bring to Him.
Jesus will always use your resources to bless the lives of others.
And we should never try to assess our difficult situations in the light of our own meager resources, for when we get Jesus involved in our particular situations, He multiplies the resources He needs to match the circumstance.