Devotional Readings

Matthew 14 – Feeding of the five thousand

Today’s reading opens with the Feeding of the 5 thousand.

It is noted that this passage is one of the few that appear in all 4 Gospels. the facts are the same 5 loaves and 2 fish. The disciples wanted Jesus to send the people away…or as John writes..”When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?” Testing them.

This is also the passage that leads into one of my favorite Chapters John 6. If you have not read that chapter recently I urge you to pick it up. it’s a great chapter to understand both the doctrines of election and assurance of salvation.

But it also clearly teaches that all will not hear this message.

Joh 6:35  And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

Joh 6:36  But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.


Joh 6:43  Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves.

Joh 6:44  ♥️  No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

Joh 6:45  It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.


Joh 6:37  All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.

Joh 6:38  For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.

Joh 6:39  And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.


Joh 6:53  Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.

Joh 6:54  Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.


Gill’s comment on this is most useful, less we misinterpret the words…

except ye eat the flesh of the son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you: by “the son of man”, Christ means himself; under which title he often speaks of himself; because it was a title of the Messiah under the Old Testament; and was expressive of the truth of his human nature, though as attended with weakness and infirmities. The “flesh” and “blood” of Christ do not design those distinct parts of his body; much less as separate from each other; nor the whole body of Christ, but his whole human nature; or Christ, as having united a perfect human nature to him, in order to shed his blood for the remission of sin, and to offer up his soul and body a sacrifice for it: and the eating of these is not to be understood of a corporeal eating of them, as the Capernaites understood them; and since them the Papists, who affirm, that the bread and wine in the Lord’s supper are transubstantiated into the very body and blood of Christ, and so eaten: but this is not to be understood of eating and drinking in the Lord’s supper, which, as yet, was not instituted; and some, without participating of this, have spiritual life in them now, and will enjoy eternal life hereafter; and all that partake of that ordinance have not the one, nor shall have the other: and besides, having a principle of spiritual life in the soul, is previously necessary to a right eating of the supper of the Lord. These words, understood in this sense, once introduced infants to the Lord’s supper; as misinterpretation of Joh 3:5 brought in the baptism of them. But the words design a spiritual eating of Christ by faith. To eat the flesh, and drink the blood of Christ, is to believe that Christ is come in the flesh, and is truly and really man; that his flesh is given for the life of his people, and his blood is shed for their sins, and this with some view and application to themselves: it is to partake of, and enjoy the several blessings of grace procured by him, such as redemption, pardon, peace, justification, &c. and such a feeding upon him as is attended with growth in grace, and in the knowledge of him, and is daily to be repeated, as our corporeal food is, otherwise persons have no life in them: without this there, is no evidence of life in them; not such live as feed on sinful pleasures, or on their own righteousness; only such that believe in Christ are living souls; and without this there is nothing to support life; everything else that a man eats tends to death; but this is what will maintain and preserve a spiritual life; and without this there is no just expectation of eternal life; but where there is this, there is good reason to expect it, and such shall enjoy it: some copies and versions read, “ye shall not have life in you”; eternal life. Now, though the acts of eating and drinking do not give the right to eternal life, but the flesh, blood, and righteousness of Christ, which faith lays hold, and feeds upon; yet it is by faith the right is claimed; and between these acts of faith, and eternal life, there is an inseparable connection.


In the end, though many do turn away….

Joh 6:63  It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.

Joh 6:64  But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.

Joh 6:65  And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

Joh 6:66  From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.

Mat 14:13-21
13  When Jesus heard of it, he departed thence by ship into a desert place apart: and when the people had heard thereof, they followed him on foot out of the cities.
14  And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick.
15  And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals.
16  But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat.
17  And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes.
18  He said, Bring them hither to me.
19  And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude.
20  And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full.
21  And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children.
Mar 6:30-44
30  And the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus, and told him all things, both what they had done, and what they had taught.
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.
37  He answered and said unto them, Give ye them to eat. And they say unto him, Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat?
38  He saith unto them, How many loaves have ye? go and see. And when they knew, they say, Five, and two fishes.
39  And he commanded them to make all sit down by companies upon the green grass.
40  And they sat down in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties.
41  And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all.
42  And they did all eat, and were filled.
43  And they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments, and of the fishes.
44  And they that did eat of the loaves were about five thousand men.
Luk 9:10-17
10  And the apostles, when they were returned, told him all that they had done. And he took them, and went aside privately into a desert place belonging to the city called Bethsaida.
11  And the people, when they knew it, followed him: and he received them, and spake unto them of the kingdom of God, and healed them that had need of healing.
12  And when the day began to wear away, then came the twelve, and said unto him, Send the multitude away, that they may go into the towns and country round about, and lodge, and get victuals: for we are here in a desert place.
13  But he said unto them, Give ye them to eat. And they said, We have no more but five loaves and two fishes; except we should go and buy meat for all this people.
14  For they were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, Make them sit down by fifties in a company.
15  And they did so, and made them all sit down.
16  Then he took the five loaves and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed them, and brake, and gave to the disciples to set before the multitude.
17  And they did eat, and were all filled: and there was taken up of fragments that remained to them twelve baskets.
Joh 6:1-13
6:1  After these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is the sea of Tiberias.
2  And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased.
3  And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples.
4  And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh.
5  When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?
6  And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do.
7  Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.
8  One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, saith unto him,
9  There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?
10  And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand.
11  And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.
12  When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.
13  Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.

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