Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Beginning of Last weeks sermon: Loaves and fish

1 After these things Jesus went over the Sea of Galilee, which is the Sea of Tiberias. 2 Then a great multitude followed Him, because they saw His signs which He performed on those who were diseased. 3 And Jesus went up on the mountain, and there He sat with His disciples.
4 Now the Passover, a feast of the Jews, was near. 5 Then Jesus lifted up His eyes, and seeing a great multitude coming toward Him, He said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread, that these may eat?” 6 But this He said to test him, for He Himself knew what He would do.
7 Philip answered Him, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may have a little.”
8 One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to Him, 9 “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?”
10 Then Jesus said, “Make the people sit down.” Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 11 And Jesus took the loaves, and when He had given thanks He distributed them to the disciples, and the disciples[a] to those sitting down; and likewise of the fish, as much as they wanted. 12 So when they were filled, He said to His disciples, “Gather up the fragments that remain, so that nothing is lost.” 13 Therefore they gathered them up, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves which were left over by those who had eaten. 14 Then those men, when they had seen the sign that Jesus did, said, “This is truly the Prophet who is to come into the world.”
15 Therefore when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and take Him by force to make Him king, He departed again to the mountain by Himself alone.

Can you imagine it? Can you imagine what it would have been like to have been on that hillside that day? That day when Jesus took those loaves and those fish and fed five thousand people…can you picture in your mind’s eye what that must have been like?

Can you imagine what it must have been like to be that boy with those loaves and those fishes? I have always wondered how it was that some boy was the only person with food in the whole crowd. How was one young boy the only person with provisions for the whole group?

The only way I can work it out in my head is that it went like this. Most of the people saw Jesus and were chasing him down. Sure they might have slapped together a sandwich for the day and grabbed a bottle of water, but they were not really worrying about provisions. They were just chasing down this man that was working miracles, going after him to see what he would do next.

But this one young guy, I imagine he is around ten. I also imagine he is surrounded by family friends as he is on the trip. But my guess is that this young boy had a mother. A mother that doted on him. I think that she of those mothers that worried about her little boy’s every move, but didn’t want him to miss out on this thing with Jesus. So she wondered how he was going to have food. So she grabbed a backpack. And she shoved in a sweatshirt, a blanket, a change of underwear, a flashlight in case he needed it, and all of the day old barley loaves on the shelves and a few fish. Everyone else may have snacked on a granola bar earlier in the day, or finished a sandwich while they were walking.

However, by the time the boy meets Jesus it is meal time. People don’t have any food. They are starting to get hungry. I am sure the hungry people would be pleasant to Jesus, but it often difficult for folks when they are hungry to be pleasant with one another. Tired people do not always have the most pleasant mood either. Jesus asks the question out loud, “Where shall we buy bread that they may eat?”

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