34“When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And he began to teach them many things. 41 And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing and broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples to set before the people. And he divided the two fish among them all.42 And they all ate and were satisfied.” Mark 6: 34,41,42
There are 3 points that I believe the Lord has spoken to me to share with you concerning this Biblical account:
- His Invitation
- His Compassion
- His Provision
Looking through the life of Christ, we find many times that He was “moved with compassion.” In each occasion we find Jesus responding to the compassion that he felt with healing and comfort.
"And Jesus went forth and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion towards them,
and he healed their sick." Matthew 14:14.
The word 'sick' is a special word. It means 'the strength-less ones,' the ones without strength, who, no doubt, had made great sacrifice to even be there. Take a moment to think about those travelers. Imagine what it looked like...to see thousands moving across the land, shoreline, and roads. Do you see their faces? The posture of their body? Is it your face that you see in the crowd?
A great crowd has found its way to the soft grassy slope down by the Sea as Jesus moves toward them. It says, "When Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion," and that means 'to suffer with.' He felt their pain, He felt their hurt, He felt their need, and He went forth toward them, "And healed their sick." And began to teach them…to heal their spiritual sickness.
When Jesus saw the people, with lavish compassion he….
- Jesus stretched out His hand and touched…Matthew 8:3
- He carries the lambs in His bosom…Is. 40:11
- In all their affliction He was afflicted….He lifted them and carried them Is. 63:9
- He makes known His presence…and encourages….It is I, be not afraid.
Likewise, Jesus is our example of offering Compassion toward others.
- Ps. 86:15 “But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.”
- Lamentations 3:22,23 His compassions NEVER fail. They are new every morning!
- Ps. 103:13 "As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him"
Phil 2:1-5“Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from His love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose. Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.”
1st John 3:17, “But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?”
When we take on the challenge of demonstrating authentic compassion, we will be transformed!
or even this basic love response can grow dull and cold.”
I love this paragraph from one of D.L. Moody’s sermons:
“Did you ever hear of one coming to Christ that he did not accept? He doesn’t care what position in life you hold. No matter how low down you are; no matter what your disposition has been. You may be low in your thoughts, words and actions; you may be selfish; your heart may be overflowing with corruption and wickedness; yet Jesus will have compassion upon you. He will speak comforting words to you, not treat you coldly or spurn you, as perhaps those of earth would, but will speak tender words, and words of love and affection and kindness.“
The feeding of the 5K story doesn't end when the disciples picked up the left-overs! Be sure to read through Mark 6:45-56 as Jesus walks on the water and calms the storm.
List the ways you saw Jesus providing for the people throughout this full Biblical account Mark 6:30 - 56.
Here are just a few that I came away with:
- A "Get Away" for rest and time with together with co-laborors.
- Healing for the sick
- Faith lesson – for His disciples - Start with what you have, Give what you have to Christ, Obey what He commands, Conserve so that nothing is wasted.
- Soft grassy slope with Jesus teaching words of hope and truth
- Spiritual food and physical food
- Safety from the storm
- Peace in a terrifying situation
- He provided His presence and provision
Philippians 4: 19 “And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”
Ephesians 3:20 “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!”
Matthew 6: 25-34 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?
Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?
And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin,
yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
Looked into Heaven, Blessed, & Broke
Communication with God does not require a certain physical position, but postures do give expression to the attitudes of our hearts.
I have thought about the way I often pray. Mostly, my head is bowed…in reverence and my eyes closed. Looking toward heaven in prayer seems to display a more boldness in coming to the throne. I should do that more often!
Looking a person in the face indicates confidence and honesty. It is indicative of an open, trusting relationship. The Gospels record many instances when Jesus prayed, looking up into heaven.
Like a small child looks to his/her parents for help, this position of prayer reflects purity of heart and expresses the following attitudes:
- It demonstrates where our help comes from.
Looking up to God in prayer serves as a testimony that we are putting our hope in Him and waiting on Him for help. “I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth”(Psalm 121:1–2, ESV).
- It displays confident faith.
At the tomb of Lazarus, Jesus prayed with faith and thanksgiving before He raised Lazarus from the dead: “. . . And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou has sent me” (John 11:41–42).
- It indicates intimate fellowship with God.
Jesus never sinned. He enjoyed perfect fellowship with His heavenly Father. When He prayed on the night before His crucifixion, “these words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: as thou has given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him” (John 17:1–2.)
First, I can look Abba Father into the face with my hands raised, showing my dependency on Him.
I thank Him for all things – the good, the bad, and the ugly – In faith, I offer Him what I have – He breaks me so that I know it is He that does the amazing and astonishing work with which to declare His glory, apart from any actions of my own. His faithful hand of mercy touches and miraculously takes what is broken and multiplies it for good – and His Kingdom purposes.
The second is this, the story of the Feeding of the 5K is a foreshadowing of things to come for him.
He is the Bread of Life, He was wounded and broken for our transgressions and bore the iniquity of us all. Jesus is our Bread, He is the feast…He distributes Himself and gives freely for all. He that eats is satisfied and hungers & thirst nevermore.
Evening approached (the end of daylight) – In your life, you may feel like you are moving into a time of darkness. Storms are on the brink. You fill out of control. You cannot find your way.
You sense Jesus calling you to come away…be still…Come to a remote place – This remote place represents your witts end. It is barren and desolate, but you know that God has you in this place for a purpose. You long to feel His tender arms carry you on. You, like the crowds are searching for answers, wisdom, healing…you are hungry & fatigued.
Do you hear Jesus inviting you to sit on the soft green grass? His eyes and heart of compassion are heavy for you. He desires to satisfy your longing soul. He invites you to eat and be fully satisfied. And Your hungry soul - He will fill with good things, if you but feast on the abundance of all of His provisions. He will calm the storm and carry you safely to shore. Trust His heart for you and your need! With a compassionate heart, He will provide!
Finding His Compassion and Provisions new every morning,
Resources: Sermons- John McArthur (gty.org) & Dr. R.C. Sproul (Ligonier Ministries), Desiring God -John Piper, Articles/Blogs from Faithgateway.com,
Sally Clarkson, Commentaries: Matthew Henry, Oliver B. Greene. Logos Software, Lexicon, Strong’s Concordance