….they ate until they had had their fill.
My daughter is fussing about having to look at fungus-infected fly photos so here is something I’m about a month behind in writing.
Without beating this dead horse too hard, I think I’ve finally hit upon some key elements in the Feeding of the 5000 which common sense must conclude was a miracle of Jesus. You know, the story present in all 4 gospels (see John 6:1-15 on June 26, 2015) that soooo many people – including priests – try to pass off as simply people sharing what they have. The story of how Jesus is soooo persuasive that He gets everyone to not only share, but then give up the rest of their food to the apostles, to the tune of twelve baskets.
Some things to consider: first, there were a large number of people, and Jesus told the apostles to have the people recline, and about 5000 men did so. Nowhere in the gospel does it say men alone were there, so the normal presumption would be that women and children were also present, and probably sitting, not reclining. So, if you have your household of even just two parents and two kids, that puts the crowd at somewhere near 20,000.
Next, Jesus was out performing miracles and as the people got wind of it they took to following. Is it reasonable to think that, say, Martha (not that Martha) would stop her husband Andrew (not that Andrew) and say, “Just a sec, hon. Gotta pack us up a picnic lunch! And not only for us, but to help feed a lot of people who may just be stumbling out of their doors blindly following this Jesus without even thinking of where their next meal may come from. Go find the kids and make sure their faces are clean. I’ll be ready in a jif!”
Can you see that scenario occurring even once, much less hundreds and hundreds of times? Because that is surely what would have had to happen in order for the “sharing” theory to work. I admit I’m not a scholar of or even a student of daily life in that time, but does it really make sense to you to imagine men, women, and children loading up their pockets with food? Especially when they are about to head out the door to follow a man performing miracles?
I think not.
So, Jesus takes the five barley loaves and two fishes from a boy (another indication that children were present), has the men recline, and gives thanks. He was thanking God, not the boy. Had He been thanking the boy He wouldn’t have given thanks. He would have just said thank you. “Giving thanks” has a special meaning, and we all know it. Then He distributes the food to them – as much as they wanted – (think your local buffet restaurant) and they ate until they had had their fill.
…they ate until they had had their fill.
They didn’t take a morsel and call it good – who does that? Your host offers you bread and fish, you take a crust and say “Thanks! Couldn’t eat another bite! I’m stuffed. Phew!” No, you eat until you are full. Then twelve men come around and gathered scraps and leftovers and put them in baskets – 1 apiece, how about that – and those baskets are full.
There could not possibly have been enough food carried within folds of robes that day to accommodate 20,000+ people, people. Again with the common sense. Even if I pack a picnic lunch, I could probably feed another family equal to my own, but I couldn’t feed ten families without planning, and I have an abundance of food and resources!
The miracle is a miracle is a miracle and there are no two ways about it.
Over and out.