goldFish are not Enough – JN 6:1-15


Gospel   JN 6:1-15

Jesus went across the Sea of Galilee.
A large crowd followed him,
because they saw the signs he was performing on the sick.
Jesus went up on the mountain,
and there he sat down with his disciples.
The Jewish feast of Passover was near.
When Jesus raised his eyes and saw that a large crowd was coming to him,
he said to Philip, “Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?”
He said this to test him, because he himself knew what he was going to do.
Philip answered him, “Two hundred days’ wages worth of food would not be enough
for each of them to have a little.”
One of his disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, said to him,
“There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish;
but what good are these for so many?”
Jesus said, “Have the people recline.”
Now there was a great deal of grass in that place.
So the men reclined, about five thousand in number.
Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks,
and distributed them to those who were reclining,
and also as much of the fish as they wanted.
When they had had their fill, he said to his disciples,
“Gather the fragments left over, so that nothing will be wasted.”
So they collected them, and filled twelve wicker baskets with fragments
from the five barley loaves that had been more than they could eat.
When the people saw the sign he had done, they said,
“This is truly the Prophet, the one who is to come into the world.”
Since Jesus knew that they were going to come and carry him off
to make him king, he withdrew again to the mountain alone.


Key words

Feeding 5000 | Fact | Four Gospels | never Forgotten | Flock | Face problems | Funds | Friends | Food | Five Loaves | 2 Fish | Feed | Filled | Fragments | Faith | Focused on wrong things!



Crackers and Fish
If we review the response from psalm 145:10-18, we have a pretty good overview of the gospel.
The hand of the Lord feeds us; he answers all our needs.
This gospel is about a miracle Jesus performed.

Plain and Simple.


Feeding 5000 & No Food

Imagine – you are at church with 5000 families and everyone is hungry. No one has eaten breakfast. People are getting hangry (Hungry+Angry). Andrew (the disciple of Jesus, not my  8 year old) makes an announcement and says, “If anyone has any food, can they step up to the front of the church?”


Friend with Five Loaves & 2 Fish

So my son Thomas – all of 6 years old – looks down and sees that he has a bag of a few goldfish crackers that his mom has given him.  So he brings them up to the front.  Everyone who sees his bag of goldfish laughs – not because they are mean, but because they know there is no way this could feed everyone. But Jesus doesn’t laugh. He gives Thomas a hug and says thank you.  Then he asks Thomas to pray with Him and give Thanks to their Father in Heaven for Thomas’ gift.


Feeding the Flock

Jesus then walks around the Church, reaches into his bag, and gives everyone two handfuls of goldfish. He does this for everyone, reaching into the small bag, over and over, giving everyone goldfish, until everyone’s stomach is filled. Then they collect all the fragments of what people had dropped of their goldfish lying on the floor of the church and found they had 12 full bags of goldfish left over.


Fantastic – not to be Forgotten

Just imagine how amazing that would be.  Would you remember it?  Of course you would! And I bet you would tell this story over and over and over.
Jesus’s story was so incredible that all FOUR gospel writers wrote about this event. It was so amazing, the crowd wanted to force him to be their King in Jerusalem. They had seen Jesus perform other miracles, but with everyone saw this at the same time.  It was awesome!

Facing Facts and Faith

This feeding of the 5000 was an honest to God miracle. During the course of Jesus’ life, he used miracles to show his power and let people know that what he said was true. As John tells us later in his Gospel:
Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name.

There were lots of miracles Jesus performed. Curing sick and crippled people. Turning water into wine. Waling on water. Casting out demons. These were witnessed by many people during Jesus’ life. So much so that we can be certain of the fact that they happened, and let our faith be strengthened by it.


Focus on the Father

But, Jesus wanted us to focus on the right things and lived his life to demonstrate how we should live. After this miracle, many in the crowd wanted to march to Jerusalem to declare Jesus King. And he was, so why didn’t Jesus take them up on this? After all, as God, isn’t he King already?

Of course, but do you remember the story of Jesus being tempted by Satan in the desert?  Satan had already offered to make Jesus King – and Jesus rejected Satan’s offer. Jesus wanted to teach us to focus our attention of the Father.


Choose God First

The miracles Jesus performed were only to get our attention! Why?
Because our attentions are driven by things of this world!
  • Are we hungry? We need food.
  • Are we sick or hurt? We need a physical cure.
  • Are we thirsty (or drinky as my son Thomas says)? We need water.
  • Are we lonely? We need companionship.
  • Are we poor? We need money.
  • Are we in trouble? We focus on worldly solutions.
This is actually the lesson Jesus wants us to pay attention to. He wants us to face our problems, first, by focusing our attentions on God the Father. Because the biggest problem we have to come to grips with is that we are a fallen people. We need salvation. And if we look to a worldly solution to solve this, we will fail.  If we practice looking first to the Father for help for our little problems, when it comes to asking Christ for his forgiveness for our sins, Jesus knows we’ll come to the right place – Him.

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