Summary: Jesus said, “Bring them to me” (five loaves, and two fishes). It is not what we have that matters, but what we do with what we have. We must be willing to give the little that we have to Him; then He will increase it and use it.

-Spring, AD 29-

Near Bethsaida

Title: Return of the Twelve; Jesus Withdraws; Five Thousand Fed

Matthew 14:13-21, Mark 6:30-44, Luke 9:10-17, John 6:1-14

-Matthew (Chapter 14)-

13 When Jesus heard of it, he departed thence by ship into a desert place apart: and when the people had heard thereof, they followed him on foot out of the cities.

The Lord heard about the death of John the Baptist, and knew that Herod would now come after Him, so He took a ship to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. The people didn’t want Him to leave; therefore they walked around the shore and met Him on the other side. This shows how popular He was.

14 And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick.

Notice that they brought their sick with them, and Jesus healed them. I don’t believe that we should ever compare what Jesus did to today’s faith healers. His healing was much greater in numbers and power, and he did everything in the open and aboveboard.

15 And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals.

I find it amusing, that the disciples are trying to advise Jesus of what to do, and that their advice is to send them away.

16 But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat.

The feeding of the five thousand is one miracle that is recorded in all four Gospels, and for that reason alone it is very important. The disciples believe that they know what Jesus should do with these people, but Jesus says that they don’t need to send them away, He says, “feed them.” It was an impossible command!

17 And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes.

These weren’t great big fish and huge loaves of bread; they were a boy’s lunch; probably just some small buns. They have so little to offer the multitudes and that is the way it is with the churches today. We send them to psychiatrists for emotional help and to the government for physical help.

All we can provide is spiritual help. The real thing that is missing today is the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. If we only had the power, we wouldn’t have to send the people away. We would bring them to God, instead of sending them away. He can transform lives and meet any need.

18 He said, Bring them hither to me.

I love this response. He said, “Bring them to me.” It is not what we have that matters, but what we do with what we have. We must be willing to give the little that we have to Him; then He will increase it and use it.

19 And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude.

The disciples wanted to tell Jesus what to do; they wanted to call the shots, but instead they become waiters. They are serving the food to the multitudes. That’s what every preacher, Sunday school teacher, and every Christian man and woman should do. We need to give out the bread of life, God’s word, to everyone who needs it.

20 And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full.

After everyone was full, there were twelve baskets of bread and fish left, which no one had touched. At this time, many people went to bed hungry, just like they do in most places in the world today. So this was a tremendous thing, to feed all these people.

21 And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children.

The five thousand didn’t include the women and children. If it isn’t too much to add one child and one woman for each man, there would have been closer to fifteen thousand than five thousand feed that day.

-Mark (Chapter 6)-

30 And the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus, and told him all things, both what they had done, and what they had taught.

At this time the disciples had returned from the mission that Jesus had sent them on; to travel in pairs through the country side preaching the Gospel. They were telling Him the things they had seen and done.

31 And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat.

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