Commentaries
English
Matthew
  
b) Feeding the Five Thousand
(Matthew 14:13-21)
13When Jesus heard it, He departed from there by boat to a deserted place by Himself. But when the multitudes heard it, they followed Him on foot from the cities.14And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.15When it was evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is already late. Send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy themselves food.”16But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”17And they said to Him,, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.”18He said, “Bring them here to Me.”19Then He commanded the multitudes to sit down on the grass. And He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples; and the disciples gave to the multitudes.20So they all ate and were filled, and they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments that remained.21Now those who had eaten were about five thousand men, besides women and children. (2Kings4:44, Mark6:31-44, Luke9:10-17, John6:1-13)


Christ’s disciples were frightened when John the Baptist was killed, as they had been formerly his followers. Because of this, Jesus isolated Himself with His disciples to pray. He taught them that their apostolic work is not always performed in the circle of believers, but always requires proclamation of the truth, even if that would cost them their own lives. Yet Christ did not get to enjoy the solitude for long. The multitudes soon rushed to Him to for comfort, guidance and power, especially after the killing of the Baptist, who was considered a well-known prophet. Now, more than five thousand men had collected with Jesus in the desert together with their families, out of their hunger for the Word of God.
The world around you is longing for salvation more than you know. Where is your pity for them? The power of God that works in you qualifies you for service if you love the lost. Your testimony about the Savior can cause men to turn to Christ.
Christ did not only pity them, but He helped them. Many of them were sick, and He, out of compassion, healed them. He came into the world to be the great Healer.
The evening drew was coming, and Jesus’ powerful speech was not yet finished. The disciples, on their part, became confused. They feared the multitude would become hungry and consequently create a serious disorder. They asked Christ to send the multitude away, but Christ said to them, “You give them something to eat.” Then they expressed their lack of food. However, Christ says to you too, “Break your loaves for the poor, preach to everyone that they may be satisfied, and share with them what you have.”
It would be harmless for you to confess, with the disciples, that you have but little with relation to the needs of the people around you. Blessed are you if you have a little of God’s gifts! Put them under Christ’s disposal that He may bless them and fill thousands with them.
But observe what Jesus did. First, He organized the multitudes, and then took the little that they had and thanked His Heavenly Father wholeheartedly for it. This was the mystery of the miracle. He give thanks for the little and it became much. Then He broke the loaves with faith, and before finishing, all were filled. His disciples filled twelve baskets with the pieces that were left over.
Christ looked after the pieces that remained and did not allow the people to leave them on the ground as some rich people do when they throw the leftover food out with the garbage.
The way to have our creature-like comforts is to bring them to Christ. Everything is sanctified by His word and by prayer to Him (1 Timothy 4:5). The things that we give to the Lord Jesus are likely to prosper and benefit us. He will do with it as He pleases, and what we receive from His hand will be doubly sweet to us. What we give in love, we should bring to Christ first, that He may graciously accept it from us, and graciously bless it to those to whom it is given.
The blessing of God can make a little go a long way. If God does not bless what we have, we can eat but never have enough to be satisfied (Haggai 1:6).
Do you thank the Lord for the little that He has put in your hands? Submit all your talents, time, and money to Jesus. Be thankful for His redemption, and then you will be astonished by how much He strengthens what little you have.

Prayer
O Father, we are ashamed of our little faith and weak love. Teach us to see the multitudes’ hunger for material bread and spiritual food that we may help them with our limited gifts. Bless us and bless all our sacrifices that many may be saved and may obtain eternal life. Strengthen our faith and love that Your power may work in our weakness today.
Question
How did Jesus create bread for the five thousand?