Categories: Sermons

Meditate On This: Jesus Feeds the 5000

Luke 9 includes one of the more iconic stories in the ministry of Jesus: the feeding of the five thousand. But before we even get to that story, Luke tells us that Jesus sent the apostles out and gave them the ability to do wondrous things in his name. If these stories aren’t connected, it’s weird to place them beside each other. 

The feeding of the five thousand is placed immediately after the apostles return from their trips. They are likely excited to share with Jesus all that they have done in his name, but there’s a problem. Crowds learn of Jesus’ presence and begin to show up. And then, Jesus does what Jesus does: he heals, he loves, and he teaches. 

The story gets exciting when the apostles realize that someone is going to have to do something with this crowd. They either have to kick them out or feed them. This is where Jesus says, “You give them something to eat.” 

There’ are a few things happening here that we often miss because we’re excited for the miracle, but this is a major teaching point for the disciples and us as well as the crowd. The disciples were excited to go and travel to share the good news of Jesus and had failed to see that there were people to serve right in front of them. 

In one line, Jesus reminds them that they are called to extend the same hospitality that they received when they were sent. But the disciples miss it because they didn’t imagine how this many people could possibly be fed. Sometimes God may ask us to do things that we believe are bigger than us, but that’s where Jesus comes in. In the areas we lack, Jesus will provide, just like he did when he fed the 5,000.