When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed they’re sick.
As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.”
Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”
“We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered.
“Bring them here to me,” he said. And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were leftover. The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.
The story of Jesus feeding the five thousand is one of the most inspiring stories in the Bible and it is often used to encourage brethren to believe in God’s great power and mercy.
What then does this miracle tell us about Jesus? What lessons can we learn from this passage? Let us delve into this miracle in detail to be able to understand it and also relate to it in our daily lives as we continue to follow Jesus.
It Reminds Us of Jesus’ Compassion
Jesus’ Feeding of the five thousand reminds us of Jesus’ compassion for His people. We see this in the first part of the passage when it is mentioned that Jesus was traveling and healing the sick at the same time. At the end of the day, the disciples wanted the crowd to go away because it was getting dark. But then Jesus said to them, let the people remain and instead give them some food.
The character of Jesus is exhibited in this part of the passage. His compassion is without bounds that even if He had traveled far, healed the sick, and did so many things, His priority was still the crowd that followed Him (John 3:16).
This scenario of Jesus feeding 5,000 people supports the fact that Jesus is the Lord that saves His Church. His compassion is so boundless that He gave His life for His children who are, by the way, sinners.
It Tells Us That Jesus Uses Other People to Bless Others
Another lesson that we can learn from Jesus’ Feeding of the five thousand is that Jesus uses other people to bless other people. An example of this is when Jesus asked his disciples to find food and found a boy who had five loaves of bread and two fish.
In this very moment, Jesus decides to use the boy for His miracle and turn the five loaves of bread and two fish into something the crowd would be enriched and fed. “Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?” (John 6:9).
This scenario teaches us two things about Jesus’ ways. First is that He uses others, His disciples, in this case, to be his hands in providing blessings to others. He asks them to find food which they did by finding the boy.
The second one is that Jesus uses His children to help others. He encourages a simple boy to help a crowd of 5,000 through his five loaves of bread and fish. We can just imagine what amazement the boy had when his simple treasures become the reason for the crowd to be fed.
Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish. When they had all had enough to eat, he said to his disciples, “Gather the pieces that are leftover. Let nothing be wasted.” So they gathered them and filled twelve baskets with the pieces of the five barley loaves left over by those who had eaten. (John 6:11-13)
By Jesus using the disciples and the boy to bless others, we are reminded that God uses us to bless others as well. There are many times when we are asked by God to help others in need and this is similar to the very scenario that happened during the Feeding of the five thousand.
When God asks us to be a blessing to others, we must have faith and to do even with just a simple amount or act, it can have a huge impact on so many lives.
It Affirms Us That Jesus Is Big Enough for Any Expectation
Another lesson that we can learn from the Feeding of the five thousand is that Jesus is big enough for any of our expectations. Here, He surpassed expectations. He is ultimate. This means that Jesus provides every need and He exceeds. We are reminded about this in the passage John 1:3, as stated, “All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.”
But it is in His feeding the 5,000 that we see an example of how powerful Jesus is. He merely commands that the food be fed and, as a result, the 5,000 people were fed. Scholars even believe that it could have been more than 5,000.
This gives us peace as we are reassured that He does greatness. In Colossians 1:17, it is mentioned that “He is before all things, and in Him, all things hold together.”
It Tells Us That Nothing We Face Here on Earth Is Too Big for God
Another lesson that we can learn from this miracle is that there is no great obstacle that we cannot face because we have God. God is always larger than everything, especially our obstacles. That is why we should not be anxious. In Matthew 6:25-27, it is written,
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?”
Jesus’ Feeding of the five thousand is a gentle reminder to our daily Christian lives that nothing we face here on earth is too big for God, Jesus is big enough for any of our expectations, and he uses other people to bless others, and ultimately, it shows Jesus’ compassion for His people. Through this miracle, we are reassured of Jesus’ love for us.
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Glory Dy has been a content creator for more than 10 years. She lives in a quiet suburb with her family and four cats.