The introduction is repeated from Part One of this series for those of you that have not read Part One. However, we highly encourage you to read Part One first.
The Miracle of Jesus feeding the five thousand men, in John 6:1-14, is the only miracle recorded by all four Gospels. It also is the most known of Jesus’ miracles. This miracle was performed by Jesus to be a physical type of the spiritual message concerning Jesus being “that Bread” which came down from Heaven. Jesus later explained “I Am the Bread of Life.” Jesus set the stage for His message on the Bread of Life, in revealing that He is the Supply for the hungry. Note the following aspects of this miracle in relation to Jesus, The Supply;
- The Supply is NOT as the flesh views it; but as faith views it.
- The Supply is in what God has given us: (Little is Much in the hands of God; without God the supply will never be enough)
- The Supply is distributed by us: (from Him, given to us – from us, given to the multitude)
- The Supply is more than Enough in Christ:
The background of this miracle is a great multitude had followed Jesus from one side of the Sea of Galilee to the other side because they had witnessed the miracles of Jesus healing the diseased. When Jesus “saw the great company come unto Him, “He saith to Philip, Whence shall we buy bread that these may eat” (Jn. 6:5).
He was setting the stage to teach the Disciples:
- To prove to them they were walking by sight and not by faith;
- The Provision is in them (when empowered by Jesus; employed by Jesus; and executed by Jesus);
- The Proof is in the Results.
In the first devotion, the outline was as follows:
To Prove Him (them): (the problem being): The Blindness of the Perception of the Supply in Jesus:
Jesus set the stage to show Philip and Andrew their lack of perception of Who He was; of His Plan and of His Power; that He was the Bread of Supply for sinners. The child of God must turn from the situation; and look to the God of the situation. In every event in the life of the child of God; the event must be viewed through the eyes of faith; for the honor and glory of God.
But, what do many Christians do today?
The answer: They look at the situation and allow their flesh to assess the situation; instead of looking to God for the answer, and the action to be taken (Prov. 3:5-6).
In this devotion, the focus will be on the following:
The Provision in Them: (using two examples; the young lad and the disciples)
The Boy of the Plan of the Supply of Jesus:
(John 6:9) “There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?”
The lad – Who is he? Why was he there? The answers are not given in this text. However, the answers lie in the Plan of God for this lad, (Psa 37:23) “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.” God ordained this lad’s steps; he was there because of the Plan of God. The lad was at the right place, at the right time, to be used of the Lord (Prov. 19:21). The lad had exactly what was needed for Christ to show the Power of God. The lad was important; and his small supply was important. Why? For little is much in the hands of God.
Every child of God has been implanted with the talents and gifts that God will use for His glory;
(Rom 12:3-6) “(3) For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. (4) For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: (5) So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. (6) Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;”
However, the gifts or talents implanted in every believer must be:
First: Empowered by Jesus (to be effective)
(Acts 1:8) Our gifts, without the Power of God, are not enough to supply the need. The five loaves and two small fishes were useless to feed the five thousand, without the power of Jesus to multiply the supply. The lad was a nobody; but this is how God works:
(1Co 1:26-29) “(26) For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: (27) But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; (28) And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: (29) That no flesh should glory in his presence.”
The lad had five loaves and two small fishes. With men, it would have been impossible to feed the “great company” of people. But Jesus took the supply of the lad, and fed the great multitude out of what the lad had.
The problem with Philip and Andrew is that they were blind to the Plan and Purpose of God to reveal His Supply in the young lad’s supply, because they were viewing the situation through the eye of the flesh and not through the eye of faith.
Child of God, never, never despise how and who God made you. Questions arise of Why? – over and over again in the believer’s journey. Why am I blind? Why am I crippled? Why am I … whatever? Christ gives the answer to Mary and Martha (John 11:40) “Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?”
What the believer needs to do is not worry and fret as to the why he is as he is, or as to the why he has this or that talent and not another. But, he needs to be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit; and yield himself, and all he is, and all he has, to be used of God – as the young lad did.
Always remember, God made you the way you are for His Glory and Honor. Thank God, He has you in His Plan and Purpose.
Second: Employed by Jesus (Prov. 3:5-6) (or directed by Jesus): The Disciples:
(John 6:11) “And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.” This reveals God’s ordained Plan of the use of men to carry out His Plan and Purpose. God used the young lad’s supply, and multiplied it; and now God uses His disciples to “distribute” His multiplied supply.
God does not need men to carry out His Plan; for He is God, and has all power in heaven and in earth (Mt. 28:18). But, He purposed to use men to carry out His Plan (Acts 9:15; Eph. 4:11-16; 2:10; Jn. 15:16).
(2 Cor. 5:20) “Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.”
(Please read Rom. 1:16-17.)
Jesus is the Miracle Worker; but, God has ordained that men be the “Distributors” of the Supply. God has called every believer to be an “Ambassador of Reconciliation.” Every believer has been implanted with gifts from God; and these gifts, when empowered by God, are commissioned by God to be distributed to others: “and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down.”
This truth cannot be forgotten. This truth will change the goal and life style of the believer. The greatest peace a child of God can, and will, have is when he knows who he is (he is a child of God); and what his purpose in life is (when he knows that he is being used of God to further the Kingdom of God). Until this peace comes into your spirit; you are as a leaf on the creek; seemingly, aimlessly going through life’s journey not knowing why you are even saved, or what you should be doing. Until a child of God has surrendered to the Sovereignty of God; until he has submitted to the Will of God; until he obeys the Word of God; and until he endeavors to endure unto the end – he has no peace, and quite frankly, is not bringing God honor. The believer is not in this life for himself; but, he is here for God to use as God sees fit.
God uses the “little” things (little is much in the hands of God) to carry out His Will. (Examples: Jezebel’s attendant threw her out the window at Jehu’s command; Naaman’s maid pointed her leprous master to the Jordan River; the widow woman fed Elijah with a cruise of oil and barrel of meal.) God used the lad’s supply, multiplied it, and then used the disciples to distribute the multiplied supply. Hallelujah! What a wonderful thing it is to know that God has implanted the supply within every believer for His Will to be accomplished in His Power. And He uses called men to “distribute” the Gospel Supply.
The two key thoughts here are that Jesus empowered the lad’s supply, and Jesus employed the disciples to distribute the supply.
The application is simple: (1) God has implanted a measure of faith (or gifts, or talents) in every believer to be used by God; (2) God must empower and employ at His appointed time, and place these gifts that He implanted in the believer to supply the need.
This is a great truth – to know that God has called you, and implanted in you His Supply. However, there is no Performance unless these gifts are Performed in the Power of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8).