At about the start of Jesus’ third and final year of his ministry, Jesus traveled again close to the Sea of Galilee and up into a mountain with multitudes of people following him. Jesus’ miracles had been talked about through the region and the Bible says these people, “having with them those that were lame, blind, dumb, maimed, and many others, and cast them down at Jesus’ feet.”
Jesus healed them.
When these people were healed, the multitude “glorified the God of Israel.”
Then, knowing that these people had been following him for three days and that they now had no food, Jesus told his disciples that he will not send them away fasting. The disciples asked, “Whence should we have so much bread in the wilderness, as to fill so great a multitude?” Jesus had miraculously fed a multitude before; would he do it again?
Jesus asked how many loaves of bread they did have. The answer was “Seven, and a few little fishes.”
Jesus asked the multitude to sit down. He took the bread and fish, gave thanks, broke the bread into pieces and gave the food to the disciples who then started giving it to the many people.
When they were done distributing the food and everyone was filled, they had seven baskets full of leftover food; that is more than they started with! They had fed 4,000 men plus women and children.
What do you think?
- What would it be like to see Jesus heal so many people? Would there be any disbelief there after that?
- If you don’t have enough to solve a problem, is it still worth thinking about what you do have? What can God do with our small offering to solve a problem?
- Is it meaningful that Jesus first gave the food to the disciples for them to give to the people? Do we sometimes receive blessings from God through other people? Can we be someone who receives from God and then gives to another?