Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living ©
He replied, “You give them something to eat.”
(Luke 9:13a (NIV))
I realize that Jesus was telling the disciples to have faith and give the people what they needed, which in this case was food. However, I just recently came to realize that there is so much more to this passage.
The first thing that came to mind is how do you reconcile what Jesus commanded with the following passage?
For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “If a man will not work, he shall not eat.”
(2 Thessalonians 3:10 (NIV))
Like so many other things that pertain to humanity, it is a matter of the heart. What is written of in 2 Thessalonians is a matter of laziness. They are not willing to do what is needed to meet the basic needs of life for themselves. It is a lie that is perpetrated on those whom they know. It is a desire to get everyone else to take responsibility for them.
Jesus was referring to something completely different when he instructed His disciples to give the crowd something to eat. Jesus knew that the people who had come to hear Him speak were seeking something and were willing to sacrifice for it. They were not expecting to freeload and have everything taken care of for them. They had taken upon themselves the responsibility to seek and go after what was beneficial to them. They were seeking something that fed their spirits. They were seeking something that went above and beyond the physical needs that they had. They were working for what they sought after. Because of this, Jesus had compassion on the crowd just as He has had compassion on all of the others who earnestly sought Him.
Seeking Jesus is not easy. It is work. We are taught a lesson through the disciples and the crowd on that day. Jesus will provide for those who truly seek Him. He fed the crowd after He fed them spiritually. If you stop to think about what He told His disciples, He was also telling them to not only take care of the physical needs, but to soon be prepared to take care of feeding the spiritual needs. They stepped up and delivered.
Are you capable of feeding those in need?