What do we learn here from this miracle of the feeding of the 5,000 men, plus women and children? We are in Matthew Chapter 14, and we have also read John Chapter 6.

We are given an amazing insight into Jesus’ knowledge of people. Jesus knew their needs. Jesus knew they were hungry.

Jesus knows when we are hungry and in need.

He knew His disciples were in danger, when they sailed off on the Lake of Galilee, without Him.

He knows too when we are afraid – or when we are about to fail – or when we are lonely or insecure – or in danger. Jesus always knew what was wrong with people. Jesus knows you and me inside out. We cannot kid Him on that all is well, when it isn’t.

Jesus knows when we are hungry, or desperate, for love – for help – for healing – for rescuing – for guidance – for assurance – for safety.

We see his concern for people. He not only knows, but He cares. That is why God the Father sent Him into the world – because God cared, and God was concerned and God acted.

We see His Authority over people. Jesus took command of the situation when the crowd was hungry. Sit down. Give them this bread and fish to eat. Gather up all the leftovers. Jesus is in charge.

How did Jesus separate that little lad from what he was holding onto? Jesus did it!

Look at His abundant generosity. Jesus just gives and gives until the need is met, and until people are fed, and filled, and satisfied. He is so generous, but not extravagant.

He demonstrates His commitment to people, and also His freedom from people.

This is not an easy balancing act for us at times.

Jesus knows when to serve people, and when to walk away from people.

Father, is this what You want for me – to become King? NO Son. So He slips away.

Jesus would not be shaped and influenced and moulded by what man expected of Him or wanted Him to do.

Within a few days Jesus Christ could have been on a throne, wearing a crown, but Jesus knew that it had to be a crown of thorns, on a Cross.

We too have to be free from the wrong demands and expectations of people. That can be costly, but following Jesus Christ usually is.

But look at what happens when someone does give everything to Jesus Christ, no matter how insignificant it might at first appear.

Here we see care and concern – an eagerness to minister and serve and feed and say “YES”, and also that ability to say “NO”, and slip away. Jesus knew when it was essential to slip away, and also to realise when it was essential to approach disciples who were in great danger.

This is the Jesus we are called and privileged to follow and serve and obey.

It is this authoritative, loving, concerned, generous, caring Christ, who chooses and calls us – and who uses and guides – and who comes to rescue and protect.

Jesus Christ is King, not because men made Him so, but because God the Father appointed Him, and before His throne we bow.

Jesus takes what it there - nothing special - but when in HIS HANDS - ah, that alters everything.

He gives thanks, and feeds and satisfies the people. When Jesus ministers there is always enough to go round, and even some left over.

It is highly organised, and Jesus does not like waste, nor untidiness.

Would these disciples ever forget the sight of these twelve baskets?

Never forget what Jesus has shown you – or said to you – or has done for you.

Jesus cleared out of the way – away from all this wrong political nationalistic thinking.

Matthew and John reveal Jesus as a very different type of King from Herod or from Caesar.

That evening, the disciples sailed off across the lake, but without Jesus Christ.

Now that is always a dangerous thing to do – to move off and away without Jesus.