Hope To The End
FEEDING THE 5,000
Only one miracle of our Lord's is recorded in all four Gospels. It is the only miracle afforded such high honor. It is the one miracle Our Lord wanted us to be sure to hear about, in order to deepen our Faith and Trust in Him. It is the miracle of the feeding of the 5,000--- the miracle of the Loaves and Fishes.
The Feeding of the 5,000 is found in:
John 6: 1-13
FEEDING THE 4,000
And to emphasize Our Lord's power to provide, there is a repeated incidence (involving the feeding of 4,000 people this time) found exclusively in the accounts of Matthew and Mark.
The feeding of the 4,000 is found in:
AND OLD TESTAMENT ACCOUNTS TOO
Besides these 6 accounts of miraculous feedings in the New Testament, there is a recording in the Old Testament Book of 2 Kings 4:42-44 .. 20 loaves feeding 100 people.
And of course, the all-time, unprecedented wonder of daily sustenance is found in
Exodus 16 the daily manna for 40 years! Have we lost our wonder over that testimony?? If we have, we ought to re-read this chapter and meditate on its awe.
Most assuredly, Our Lord is our provider. Our Father gives us each day, our daily bread. Is anything too hard for the LORD? (Genesis 18:14)
With that introductory background, let's read the feeding of the 5,000 in Mark 6:34:
"And they (Jesus and His apostles) departed into a desert place by ship privately. And the people saw them departing, and many knew Him, and ran afoot thither out of all cities, and outwent them, and came together unto Him.
And Jesus, when He came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and He began to teach them many things.
And when the day was now far spent, His disciples came onto Him and said,
"This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed:
Send them away, that they may go into the country round about, and into the villages, and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat.
He answered and said unto them, "Give ye them to eat".
And they say unto Him,
"Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat?
He saith unto them,
"How many loaves have ye? Go and see.
And when they knew they say,"Five and two fishes".
And He commanded them to make all sit down by companies upon the green grass.
And they sat down in ranks, by hundreds and by fifties.
And when He had taken the
five loaves and the two fishes, He looked up to heaven, and
blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to His disciples to
set before them;
And the two fishes divided He among them all.
And they did all eat, and were filled.
And they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments, and of the fishes.
And they that did eat of the loaves were about 5,000 men."
DO YE LIKEWISE
This miracle is taught so thoroughly in order that it may be APPLIED. If you notice in all four accounts, Jesus asks the disciples themselves to feed the multitude. Our Lord merely pronounced a blessing upon the food, and gave the Father thanks for it.
The rest was up to them.
In none of the four accounts is there any mention of a huge care package descending from above .nor was any large conglomerate of food mentioned on the ground. Where then did all this abundance come from? Remember we're talking 5,000 men and probably 20,000--25,000 people in all, including women and children. If all the food was in one place, logistics alone would tell us that it would take hours to pass the food along (while being hungrily eaten.) None of the scenarios add up. So, what really happened? What really took place?
MULTIPLYING BY DIVIDING
Let's go back to the premise the Lord gave his men. He told them two very important things. He told them to act themselves in order to accomplish the task, and he asked them to draw from the resources they had. Now taking these two principles and applying them throughout the multitude, we conclude that:
As pieces of fish and bread were continually broken among the ranks, each one receiving the pieces continued the miraculous sharing/supplying within his group and thus all the groups were fed at the same time. Instead of mass distribution, there was mass participation. Each person "broke" into the miracle by sharing "and they did all eat, and were filled."
ACTS CHAPTER "29"
What an awesome miracle! Our Lord not only fed their stomachs, but He also fed their minds and spirits with Kingdom principles: PRAY, TRUST and ACT. The blessing comes after the action is taken, and not before.
PRAYER initiates the blessing.
TRUST evokes God's intervention.
And then our deeds complete the ACTion.
It was such a large concept that many people did not comprehend it all. They felt they had a magician on their hands and wanted to make him a king (John 6:14).
"Anything, just feed us" ..is the cry of pragmatic politics. Jesus wanted to reign over our hearts, not our stomachs. He declined the offer.
Jesus worked this miracle out of compassion not for their hunger necessarily; the people could easily quit for the day, return to their towns and buy food. Our Lord's compassion was larger than that. These people were wandering sheep, without a shepherd. Formal religion wasn't filling their inner cravings John the Baptist had recently been taken from them, and now they turned to Jesus. Would He be their leader? Yes. But his Way is a way of delegation and participation. He would be an example for them to follow, not to be put on a pedestal to be idolized. His way demands maturation.
Christianity is a hands-on Faith. It is a way of Applied Faith. As we acknowledge
God our Father over all, and Jesus as Lord, then
guided by the power of the Holy Spirit
we participate in deeds beyond our capacity. We do not have a spark of the Divine in our nature, acting on our own merits. We're too filled with clay for that; our egos would burst at the seams, without the humble dependence upon God for our every need.
But Jesus loves us so much, He wants a co-operative manifestation of grace in our lives. A child lets someone-somewhere 'out there' handle the affairs of life. A mature person enters into a relationship of applied trust, and together---- partnering with God----- grace flows. We are all called to that higher level of relationship with Jesus Christ.
(All 5,000+ ate)
Jesus gave us the keys to the Kingdom. He has delegated His authority to the Believer, and as such we are to be conduits of God's miraculous power, "that worketh IN US."
For it says in Ephesians 3:20 .
"Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, ACCORDING TO THE POWER THAT WORKETH IN US, unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus, throughout all ages
( 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 ,2020 ad infinitum) world without end . Amen."
Jesus Christ is the same "yesterday, today, and forever." Hebrews 13:8
Was the miracle of the Loaves and Fishes a fairy-tale that happened long, long ago?
No; none of the supernatural wonders Jesus enacted were fairy tales. These events were all eye-witnessed by thousands of people, and recorded by four journalists of highest integrity and truth (not to mention Josephus, the greatly respected historian, who recorded the actual historicity of Jesus in his journals). The credentials are impeccable!
Yet more important than establishing something in the past , is the fact that today
you and I sit on that same hillside as it were, at the feet of Jesus, being taught the very same kingdom principles with no less of an outcome.
"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever!" Hebrews 13:8
We read in the Gospel of John Chapter 14 verse 12:
"He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also:
and greater works than these shall he do".
Can we be led of the Holy Ghost to push-through to higher levels of partnership with God? Do we take the keys of the kingdom and first bind the strongman, ( Satan and his cohorts ) from hindering the grace of God ? Do we ask for the blood covering of Jesus over all of our affairs ?( Matt. 12:29 and Mark 3:27 ) Do we exemplify kingdom-authority?
If not, why not?
"The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force."
Does that mean we are to be violent people? No. Not in the earthly sense, but in the spiritual realm, yes. We are to bind powers and principalities (demons), in the name of Jesus Christ, that hinder God's work here on earth. We are to step out in faith and appropriate all that God gives us for the task. Only those who realize that they can't do it without God's help will make it.
"Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."(Matthew 5:3)
The keys to the kingdom are these: PRAY, TRUST and ACT....and give the glory to God.
Evil governments like to make sport of faith in God. The Communists tell a classroom of children that prayers and miracles are fantasy. They tell the class to close their eyes, pray for candy, then open their eyes and see if any candy really appears. Of course, the candy does not appear. "Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God"
These atheists try to represent a Genie-god who, they say, in actuality does not exist. Their scenario is obviously a gross misrepresentation.
Three things are missing
1. There is no actual need (only whim)
2. There is no actual partnering with God no responding to the initiative of the Holy Ghost, in obedience to His voice.
3. There is no Faith, Trust [ curiosity is not Faith ]
Had sincere prayer, in true need, been made to one's Heavenly Partner--Almighty God-- an answer comes. It may be later than we like, and it may be through channels we had not perceived, but God answers "the effectual prayers of a righteous man"
(James 5:16) .even if that answer is:
"My grace is sufficient"( 2 Corinth. 12:9 ).
His Grace IS sufficient. That strengthening Grace keeps our Relationship in good faith, and interactive. Our Partnership with God stays living and reciprocal.
Charity is God-based...not government-funded. Please see:
"Separation of Church and State" http://hopetotheend.com/sep.html
Here is a modern day example of God's Miraculous Provision (ANZAC) Must read!!
Recently Pat Boone had on his show a female singing-artist who gave the testimony that she had cancer, and was given a short time to live. This cancer attacked her blood cells, and unless she could get her cell count up, there was no hope of reprieve or recovery.
In desperation this woman prayed to the God of the Loaves and Fishes, and asked for a multiplication of the necessary cells. When she came back in for a blood-count, the figure jumped far past any other previous recording . Needless to say, this woman (I do not know her name) totally recovered from her cancer and is active and living an abundant life.
"I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it MORE abundantly." John 10:10.
What is your need? Why not turn to Our abundant Good Shepherd and ask him for MORE? "Ye have not, because ye ask not." James 4:2
100 Million Miracles (from Flower Drum Song)
EXPLOITS BY THE GODLY
These being the Last Days, our marching orders will be more forthcoming.
Are we prepared for such a time as this?
It says in the Book of Daniel 11:32:
"But the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits."
Please see "1 + 2 Kings and the Great Tribulation"
Are we strong in the Lord's
might and power? Hopefully
"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and IN THE POWER OF HIS MIGHT".
Our charity and works are not from us.
"Not by power, nor by might, but by My Spirit, saith the LORD of hosts,"
( Zechariah 4:6 ). The power of the Holy Spirit works wonders.
Our Jehovah-Jireh (all-providing God) is abundant in mercy and forgiveness, as well as in all the necessities of life. Why not partner with Him today .put your hand in the hand of the Man from Galilee and let Him fill your mouth with praise and blessing.
Please see " The Great Tribulation and Jehovah-Jireh"
"Thank you, Almighty and Eternal God, for caring for us in every aspect of our life.
May we dare to trust you more. Amen"
False Prophet http://hopetotheend.com/ch6p2.html
Biblical prophecy tells us that soon there will come the "False Prophet" Rev. 13 ("another beast"). This person is described in 3 places:
1. "And he doeth great wonders,
so that he maketh fire ( lasers, lightenings, missiles?) come down from heaven on the earth (imitating Elijah)
in the sight of men (TV, webcast, assemblies etc.) Revelation 13:13
2. "the false prophet that wrought miracles before him (the antichrist), with which he (the false prophet) deceived them that had received the mark of the beast." Revelation 19:20
(great illusive deceptions, tricks etc.)
3. "And then shall that Wicked be revealed (the false prophet) whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His moth and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming
Even him (the false prophet)
whose coming is after the working of Satan (occultic powers, demonic partnering)
with all power and signs (great spectacles, manifestations....like Merlin the magician)
and lying wonders
(consummate liar, manipulating visual techniques, digital deceiver, special effects phenomenon.....please see hopetotheend.com/fool.html )
"And with all deceivableness (subtle sham, phoniness) of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
And for this cause God shall send them STRONG DELUSION, that they should believe a lie.
That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness (sin)". 2 Thessalonians 2: 8--12
Beware: mental potent, poisoning of the mind, capitalizing on fears
It is conceiveable that a day is coming when the False Prophet seeks to overturn the
validation of Yahweh's authority and power (demonstrated at Mt. Carmel in 1 Kings 17) by having a contest number 2.
In this scenario, the False Prophet calls upon the God of the Christians to send fire down from heaven.....the fire does not come. This is akin to the Communist' ploy of asking God to send candy. Since there was no real faith in the Living God, the Living God does not respond in this scenario. "Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God."
Next, the False Prophet calls upon the "god of this world" (Satan, the dragon, that serpent, the devil...2 Corinthians 4:4 ) to send fire down from heaven. The fire descends. Many people will be in awe and this will consummate the bond between the False Prophet and those who have never accepted the Gospel. The False Prophet then leads his flock to the Beast (antichrist) whom the people worship. And the Beast acknowledges the power behind him as that of Satan, whom all the unsaved will worship. "And they worshipped the dragon".
Could Almighty God have sent the fire down from heaven in this scene ? Yes.
Then why didn't he ?
The answer lies in Deuteronomy 13
"If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,
And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spoke unto thee saying,
'Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;'
Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams:
FOR THE LORD YOUR GOD PROVETH YOU
TO KNOW WHETHER YE LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL." Deuteronomy 13:1-5
This is the litmus test of all miracles .... Do they point to God or to someone else?
It's that pure and simple. Either the conduit (miracle-performer) is attesting to the power of the Living God and His Son Jesus Christ, or he is enticing people to follow after Satan and his breed....the sons of Belial ?
For more on False prophets please see 2 Peter 2... and Jude