Friday 1 November 2013

John 6:1-15 - Feeding the hungry

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John 6:1-15 is the fourth of the signs in John.

Jesus tells us to feed the hungry, but in doing so himself he reveals his power and authority over the natural world. He has collected a large following by this time; people who have seen the miraculous healings want to know more or perhaps want healing themselves. And they are very determined followers, tracking him across great distances.

Philip points out they don't have enough money to buy bread to feed everyone. Andrew mentions that there's a boy with a little bread and fish, but clearly a woefully inadequate supply for so many people.

Jesus ignores both remarks and just goes ahead with the preparations for an ultra large picnic. The people sit on the grass. Jesus gives thanks and passes around the food. When everyone has eaten their fill they tidy up, [Tweet it!] collecting leftovers that far exceed the amount of the original supply.

The people were convinced by Jesus' powerful demonstration and wanted to make him king, but he slipped away quietly and alone.

Notice that Jesus doesn't make a great show of this miracle. He does it quietly, but everybody there that day would remember it for the rest of their lives. We should work that way too. All of the glory should be his, not ours. We are like the disciples, stumbling along thinking that the problem is too great to be solved. So when Jesus deals with it in a quiet but unexpected way, we are astonished.

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