The Miracles of Jesus (23/35)

If God has done it once, he certainly can do it again. This is something we often forget when we look at His miracles, when we look at how He has moved in the history of the Church, and when we look at how He has touched our lives. We keep making the mistake of thinking He is like us. We know He’s not, but when it comes time to depend on Him, we fail to forcibly remind ourselves that He’s not like us and that He can do the miraculous whenever He wants. As a result, we begin looking elsewhere for aid, for relief, in a given situation. And we’re dead wrong when we do. Now I understand it’s natural to do this. After all, even those who walked with Christ made this mistake:

Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion on the crowd because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. And I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way.” And the disciples said to him, “Where are we to get enough bread in such a desolate place to feed so great a crowd?” And Jesus said to them, “How many loaves do you have?” They said, “Seven, and a few small fish.” And directing the crowd to sit down on the ground, he took the seven loaves and the fish, and having given thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up seven baskets full of the broken pieces left over. Those who ate were four thousand men, besides women and children. – Matthew 15:32-38, ESV

The feeding of the five thousand in the desolute wilderness was past history. There Jesus took some loaves and fish and fed everyone. Now a similar situation has come up. So how do the disciples respond? Do they say, “Hey! This is just like before! Jesus has this covered!” Not exactly. Their response is similar to what it was the first time, “Where are we going to get enough food, Jesus?” And Jesus doesn’t hesitate. He asks for the loaves. Then they also realize they have fish. Not much, certainly not enough to feed the crowd, but this is Jesus we’re talking about. He breaks the bread and there’s plenty to feed everyone with plenty left over – just like before.

Satan whispers in our ear to doubt. Our fleshy nature tells us we can’t rely on anyone but ourselves. The world says there isn’t a God we can trust and rely in. Everything around us tells us not to believe. But Scripture contains numerous repeats of God coming through. It’s no accident that Jesus fed these people the same way as He did the 5,000 before. This second time around proved the first time was no  fluke. It showed that Jesus has the power to do this any time He wants. We can trust Jesus to deliver what He has promised. He’s never going to miss. He’s never going to fail to deliver. It doesn’t matter what anyone or anything else says. Jesus makes it happen. We can and should believe in Him.

This is where we need to be with respect to our trust and faith in Him. If we are relying on a promise from Christ, if it’s something we’ve confirmed with Scripture and we know is in keeping with His nature, we need to trust. We need to be hopeful in that Biblical way – counting it already done because we know our Savior is going to deliver, not in that wishy, “I hope He comes through but it’s a longshot” sort of way we often mean when we use the word hope. I know this is hard. I struggle with it, too. But our Lord delivers. He doesn’t fail. We have to shake off the doubts and all the doubters and just focus on the evidence Scripture gives us and what we’ve seen in our own experience. Yes, it means stepping out on faith. It means relying on someone other than ourselves. But that’s what He wants. So let’s deliver, too.

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