Sermons

Summary: The miracles of multiplying the loaves and walking on water are connected in Mark 6:52; what was Jesus trying to prove to His disciples?

Pita Bread, Fish, and Boat Potatoes

(Matt. 14:13-33, Mark 6:31-52, Luke 9:10-17, John 6:1-21)

Intro

1. It is hard to define a miracle.

2. In one sense, miracles are happening all around us…(read excerpt for Swenson’ Book, "More than meets the eye" or other creationist materials explaining the complexity of life

3. The laws of nature ARE results of the Creator working miracles. But we tend to label events miracles when the LAWS of PHYSICS, NATURE, or BIOLOGY are suspended and something takes place contrary to them. Obviously, if God created these laws, it is not difficult for Him to make exceptions to the laws He created---He is not bound by His own creation…

4. Jesus often worked the same types of miracles, but some were distinct:

(1) walking on water only once

(2) multiplying the loaves only twice

5. These two miracles are linked together by Mark in Mark 6:52.

Question: Why did Jesus work these two miracles? What was He trying to get across? What point was He making?

I. Let’s Look At These Events

A. Jesus & His disicples being overworked & needed time to rest/ eat....

1. serving people is never a completed task....new in ministry, always felt guilty...

2. no qualms: let’s get in a boat and get away...

3. Other people run or hike around the Lake; some beat Jesus there!

B. Jesus sees the crowd coming and welcomes them

1. like sheep without a shepherd

2. he began teaching

3. disciples interrupt: it is late afternoon, the disciples advise Jesus to send the crowd away--so they can go to villages and buy some food...but pretty sparce around there--probably not enough food as needed

C. Jesus plays a little game with his disciples. He tells them, "YOU give them something to eat...."

Why does He play this game? To help them appreciate the impossibility of the situation...like Elijah pouring water over the sacrifices on Mt. Carmel, waiting for God to not only send fire, but fire to consume the water as well...Gideon’s 32,000 reduce to 300 men....

1. the disciples think this is ludicrous----Philip says

(1) where can we buy enough bread?---perhaps Christ’s point--the people had nowhere

(2) 8 months wages could not buy enough for even each to have a little

2. Peter had what seemed a silly addition to the conversation

(1) I found a boy w/5 sm. barley loaves & 2 sm. fish--how far will that go...

(2) have you ever wondered WHY Peter even mentioned this? An inkling

3. Jesus told the people to sit down

(1) grassy region

(2) by 50’s and 100’s....broke the bread, gave thanks, "Blessed art Thou, Lord God, King of the Universe, Who brings forth bread from the earth..."

4. The people ate till full, 12 baskets (little) left over..

.

D. Christ Foils a Scheme to Declare Him King (John 6:14-17)

1. The people said, "Surely this is the PROPHET that is come into the world..."

---not necessarily the Messiah or Son of God, but the prophet (that Moses predicted)

2. They planned to try to make Christ King by force...

(1) before it got to that point, Christ sent his disciples on boat ahead of Him

(2) then He snuck away to a mountainous area---why? to pray, yes, but to avoid...

3. The same temptation, perhaps, that Satan had given Christ in the desert...

(1) the crown without the cross

(2) Jesus came the first time as the Lamb of God....

E. Jesus Walks on Water

1. Meanwhile, disciples are rowing on Sea of Galilee: a nasty storm develops

2. They had travelled a bit more than 3 miles in 4 hours...

3. At 4 or 5 in the morning, Jesus sees them and begins walking on the water...

4. The disciples see him, and they think it is a ghost---perhaps the Grim Reaper

5. Jesus says, "Take courage. It is I. Don’t be afraid."

6. Peter says, "Lord, if it’s you, let me come out to you on the water..." AGAIN, Peter is the one willing who is most likely to believe Jesus CAN DO.

7. Note: the other disciples never asked this---they were not couch potatoes, but boat potatoes...

8. Peter starts walking toward Christ, then sees wind, fears, starts seeking, Lord save me...

9. Jesus and Peter get into the boat (Mt. 14:23) and the disciples worship Jesus and say, "Truly you are the Son of God.."

Question: Why did Jesus work these two miracles? What was He trying to get across? What point was He making?

Mark 6:51-52 answer this question: "Then he climbed into the boat with them, and the wind died down. They were completely amazed, for they had not understood about the loaves; their hearts were hardened.

II. Jesus Wanted His Disciples Not Only to Recognize Him As a Great Prophet, or Just the Messiah, but to Worship Him As God in the Flesh

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