Mark 6:31 And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. 32 And they departed into a desert place by ship privately. 33 And the people saw them departing, and many knew him, and ran afoot thither out of all cities, and outwent them, and came together unto him. 34 And Jesus, when he came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and he began to teach them many things. 35 And when the day was now far spent, his disciples came unto him, and said, This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed: 36 Send them away, that they may go into the country round about, and into the villages, and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat.
The apostles had just come from venturing out from Christ, trusting in his power to aid them in preaching, teaching, healing and casting out demons. They were tired and hungry, so the Lord gives them the instructions in verse 31. I’m sure that the last thing they thought was that about five thousand men (v.44) would track them down in the desert place to which they were directed for their rest. But that is exactly what happened.
Their desire was to Send them away! But the Spirit of compassion welled up within the Lord, being the Good Shepherd, and he began to teach them many things. (v.34). For it was his belief that Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. So he gave them the Heavenly Bread, the true Bread that the Father had sent down from heaven! He imparted himself to their hungry souls! Matt. 5:6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
The disciples had an opposite opinion concerning the multitude! They wanted to Send them away, for they have nothing to eat! But this was the very reason the Lord did not want them sent away! The Lord had promised the apostles that it was in this desert place that the apostles would be fed! (v.31). So he binds the hunger of the apostles to that of the multitude and teaches them a valuable lesson. Like Ezekiel said, I sat where they sat! (Ez. 3:15). For the Lord’s ministers are those Who can have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way; for that he himself also is compassed with infirmity. (Heb. 5:2).
The apostles informed the Lord that this was a desert place, and that the time is far passed for anyone to purchased meals for themselves. But just like Martha and Mary concerning the death of their brother Lazarus, this was to limit the Lord’s identity in their narrow consideration of who he really was! Both Martha and Mary only had hope in Lazarus’ resurrection in an appointed time – the end time resurrection of all the dead! But the Lord had to remind them that he, himself is the resurrection and the life! The resurrection is not a scheduled event, it is a Person! John 11:25 Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
Therefore the Lord also instructs at this event that he IS the Bread of God! He IS the Bread sent down from heaven. And therefore there is no place, nor any late hour that can hinder his feeding the hungry souls of men! As quoted above in Matthew 5:6, all one need be for him to feed them is “hungry after righteousness!
Therefore the Lord carries out what he intended from the very beginning! For we read in John 6:6, when he spoke to Philip concerning this situation, for he himself knew what he would do. Acts 15:18 Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world. Therefore he intended all along that the apostles would be fed at this time, at this place, and only after serving these 5000 men! And the scriptures state in Mark 6:42, And they did all eat, and were filled.
Like that servant who has worked hard in the hot fields all day, but must come into the master’s house and first serve his master before he may sit down to eat, so the apostles learned a valuable lesson that they are given to the church for their soul’s nourishment. They must appropriate Christ, the Bread of God, by faith and in continued faithfulness to the hearts of the Lord’s people!
1 Cor. 3:21 Therefore let no man glory in men. (That is, ministers!) For all things are yours; 22 Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; 23 And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.
Pastor Gene Breed
July 30, 2010