The feeding of the five thousand is so amazing that it is recorded in all four Gospels in the Bible.
Just to refresh your minds as to what happened here. A great crowd had been following Jesus listening to him and watching him perform miracles. They were just amazed at what they were seeing. It was getting late on and the people were hungry and needed some food.
"One of the disciples—it was Andrew, brother to Simon Peter—said, “There’s a little boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish. But that’s a drop in the bucket for a crowd like this.”
Jesus said, “Make the people sit down.” There was a nice carpet of green grass in this place. They sat down, about five thousand of them. Then Jesus took the bread and, having given thanks, gave it to those who were seated. He did the same with the fish. All ate as much as they wanted." (The Message John 6 8-11)
As a child I remember a teacher spending ages describing to us how this was done. She said that everyone felt guilty and shared their food with each other. Well that sort of works except for the next few verses where we read
"When the people had eaten their fill, he said to his disciples, “Gather the leftovers so nothing is wasted.” They went to work and filled twelve large baskets with leftovers from the five barley loaves.
The people realized that God was at work among them in what Jesus had just done" (The Message John 6 12-15)
Now I know that when I go on a hike I only carry the minimum amount of food and drink with me as it is heavy. I certainly don't carry an extra meal, so the teachers idea does not really hold water, as where does all the extra food come from. The passage does not say that the people just had a snack, but that they ate their fill.
The second thing that squashes the teachers statement is the numbers of people involved. It is hard enough to hush up something if just a few people had seen it, but noway could this be hushed up. The text says that there were around 5000 men present, so this does not account for all the woman and children- we are probably talking of around 20,000 people.
The third thing that squashes the teachers statement is the fact that it is recorded in all four Gospels. Basically saying this happened, and it was an amazing miracle. I can just imagine the TV news crews if it happened today. They would be interviewing everyone for their take on the story..
You can read more on this amazing chapter of John in our home group notes on the chapter 6 of Johns Gospel
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.