Feeding 5,000 and walking on water… Are there two things that Jesus is more known for, aside from the resurrection? Here’s the challenge for us though: familiarity often breeds complacency. We stop looking at these stories with wonder like we did when we first heard them. I hope that, today, you can see them with fresh eyes and regain perspective; Almighty God of the universe became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1), and He clearly made His presence known through miracles like we see in Mark 6.
In the feeding of the 5,000, there are a lot of neat things to account for. First, it’s one of the few miracles mentioned in all 4 gospel accounts: John 6:1-15, Matthew 14:13-21, Mark 6:32-44, and Luke 9:10-17. Second, it happens at a pretty cool location: Bethsaida. That’s where the Jordan River feeds the Sea of Galilee, which is the main water source for Israel.
Look at where Jesus is about to do a miracle of provision — right where the Jordan flows into the Sea of Galilee. Without the Jordan (which is ONE river fed by THREE principle tributaries (springs), Israel would have no life. It’s their main water source. Here, in this “chance” location, Jesus is about to show somewhere between 8-10k people (5k men + women/kids) that HE is the source of life. HE is their provider.
The next story is of Jesus walking on water. The disciples were freaked out and were navigating through a storm with all their might. Jesus, desiring to show them His glory, walked out to them and restored calm. This was a huge moment for them, reiterating that this must have been the true Messiah. What struck me, though, is what I read in verses 51-52:
Then he climbed into the boat, and the wind stopped. They were totally amazed, for they still didn’t understand the significance of the miracle of the loaves. Their hearts were too hard to take it in.
This was like taking a 2×4 on the noggin. How often am I like this? I see the Lord work and move, miracles happen all around me, and yet I still don’t get it. I still struggle to trust Him. I question His plan. I balk at His provisions.
Here’s a question for reflection today. I’d love to hear your responses in the comments section so we can encourage each other and serve one another in prayer.
In what area of your life do you question God the most? Or phrased another way, where do you consistently lack trust in God?
By: Todd Thomas — Worship & College Pastor