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The good news for the day April 28, 2017

Friday of the Second Week of Easter (271)

When Jesus crossed the Sea of Galilee, a big crowd followed Him; they had seen significant things He was doing for sick people. Jesus went up a hill, where, with His followers, He sat down. (The Jewish Passover holyday was coming up.) When Jesus noticed, He saw a big crowd arriving; He turned to Philip, “Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?” (He said this to test Philip; He already knew what He was going to do.) Philip answered, “Several hundred days’ wages worth of food would not be enough for everybody to get even a little.” A follower—Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother—said, “We have a boy here with five barley loaves and a few fish—but what good are these for such a big crowd?” Jesus said, “Have people find a place to sit downt.” (There was much grass there.) The men—about 5,000—found a place. Then Jesus took the loaves, expressed thanks, and distributed them to the men who had found a place to sit—and as much of fish as people wanted. When people had their fill, He said to His followers, “Pick up the left-over remnants, so that nothing goes to waste!” They did collect them–filling 12 wicker baskets from the five barley loaves, with bread remnants that had proved more than people could eat. When people saw he had done a miracle, they said, “This is truly the “Prophet,”—the one expected to come into the world.” Once Jesus realized they were going to come and carry him off to crown him king, He went away to his own “higher place” alone. (John 6)

We have five versions of this “multiplication of the loaves and fishes”—an event people remembered decades later—everywhere there were followers of Jesus. But its very familiarity makes it an easy cliché. What does this event MEAN?

Imagine: This charming & attractive man has left town, you and your family go to hear him, walking far off the beaten roads. It is late afternoon. You, your wife and three kids are hungry. It is a big crowd. A little food here and there. The folks up front start distributing bread and dried fish. Your family eats—is satisfied. This man feeds you somehow—saints and sinners. He cares. He shows it by feeding your stomach, mind, and heart. You believe in him. You are loved.

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