Wednesday Morning: 25 Sep 2019 – Matthew 14:1-21 ~ “You feed them.”

Wednesday Morning

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Opening (A Collect for Grace – Wednesday)

O Lord, our heavenly Father, almighty and everlasting God, you have brought us safely to the beginning of this day: Defend us by your mighty power, that we may not fall into sin nor run into any danger; and that guided by your Spirit, we may do what is righteous in your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – Matthew 14:1-21 (NLT)

The Death of John the Baptist

When Herod Antipas, the ruler of Galilee, heard about Jesus, he said to his advisers, “This must be John the Baptist raised from the dead! That is why he can do such miracles.”

For Herod had arrested and imprisoned John as a favor to his wife Herodias (the former wife of Herod’s brother Philip). John had been telling Herod, “It is against God’s law for you to marry her.” Herod wanted to kill John, but he was afraid of a riot, because all the people believed John was a prophet.

But at a birthday party for Herod, Herodias’s daughter performed a dance that greatly pleased him, so he promised with a vow to give her anything she wanted. At her mother’s urging, the girl said, “I want the head of John the Baptist on a tray!” Then the king regretted what he had said; but because of the vow he had made in front of his guests, he issued the necessary orders. So John was beheaded in the prison, and his head was brought on a tray and given to the girl, who took it to her mother. Later, John’s disciples came for his body and buried it. Then they went and told Jesus what had happened.

Jesus Feeds Five Thousand

As soon as Jesus heard the news, he left in a boat to a remote area to be alone. But the crowds heard where he was headed and followed on foot from many towns. Jesus saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick.

That evening the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away so they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves.”

But Jesus said, “That isn’t necessary—you feed them.”

“But we have only five loaves of bread and two fish!” they answered.

“Bring them here,” he said. Then he told the people to sit down on the grass. Jesus took the five loaves and two fish, looked up toward heaven, and blessed them. Then, breaking the loaves into pieces, he gave the bread to the disciples, who distributed it to the people. They all ate as much as they wanted, and afterward, the disciples picked up twelve baskets of leftovers. About 5,000 men were fed that day, in addition to all the women and children!
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Morning Reflection:

But Jesus said, “That isn’t necessary—you feed them.”
– Matthew 14:16 –

Jesus’ feeding of the five thousand reminds us of our personal inadequacies and His all-sufficiency of resources to meet the needs at hand. And sometimes it takes a miraculous intervention to fulfill God’s will and purpose for us.

In context, this sign was significant to three groups –

+ the disciples – confidence in Jesus’ ability to supply all their needs.
+ the believing remnant – confirmation of their faith in Jesus Messiah.
+ the unbelieving crowds – continued rejection of Jesus in spite of his mighty works.

Questions for consideration:

  • What do you think was Jesus’ primary mission – to feed the physically hungry, the spiritually hungry, or both? Please explain.
  • Do you think it is easier to feed the physically hungry, or the spiritually hungry? Please explain.
  • Can you think of an example when Jesus has met your needs in a miraculous way? Please explain.
  • Can you think of examples when people were physically fed by Christians, but remained unbelievers? Please explain.

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Morning Prayer: For the Bread of Life.

Feed us now, Lord Jesus, as you fed your first disciples.

  • Feed us with that soul-food which nurtures enough love within us to outstrip the fears and enmity that ties the world up in knots.
  • Feed us with that spiritual bread which strengthens our hands for serving those broken and lost people whom this world deems a waste of space.
  • Feed us, so that we may be fulfilled with some of that joy which the universe cannot contain.

Heal and transform us now; we hunger and thirst for your abundant life.

  • We bring you our sorrow and ask for the bread of joy.
  • we bring you our despair and ask for the bread of hope.
  • we bring you our weariness and ask for the bread of inspiration.

Meet us here;we need the bread of heaven to sustain us as we journey to find our way, that we may we be one with you. In your name we pray. Amen.
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“I am the Bread of Life ” – BBC Songs of Praise

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Closing:

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, and protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen



Categories: Life in Christ

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