Jesus must have been grieved when He heard what had happened to John the Baptist. He got into a boat to depart to a solitary place. We aren’t told what Jesus was thinking, but it could be that He wanted to be away from the crowds in a solitary place to spend time with His Father and His disciples.
But He couldn’t escape from the people. They saw Him get into a boat and followed on foot. They were able to see the direction the boat was moving in, and wouldn’t let it out of their sight in order to get to the place where Jesus landed.
This didn’t thwart Jesus. He had compassion on them and healed their sick. But recognising the lateness of the hour and the remoteness of the place, the disciples tried to encourage Jesus to send them away in order to get food from neighbouring villages. But Jesus said, ‘They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.’
This was something the disciples had not bargained for, which is clear from the reply they gave. ‘We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish.’ Jesus then directed the people to sit down on the grass, took the loaves and fish, gave thanks and broke them into pieces, and gave the pieces to the disciples to give to the people.
I wonder what might have been our reaction if we had been among those disciples on that day, and what would be our response to a similar situation today?
When the disciples were sent out by Jesus, they were amazed at how they were able to do some of the things Jesus did. Then when they were filled with the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, they went far and wide to spread the good news of the Kingdom of God through Jesus as Saviour. They were able to experience wonderful miracles in the power of His name.
It’s sad to reflect and recognise that there are many churches with the thinking that such miracles were only for the early Church to experience, and not for today’s Church. When Jesus sent out the first disciples, He instructed them to ‘heal the sick, raise the dead,, cleanse those who have leprosy and drive out demons as they preach the message of the kingdom of heaven’ (Matthew 10:7-8). In Luke 10:17 there were seventy two who came back to Jesus saying what they had experienced.
There are many wonderful testimonies of people being healed, restored, delivered and set free from all manner of sickness disease and infirmity through the ministry of Ellel Ministries, and other ministries throughout the world, where servants of Jesus go and act in His name. May God bless you with the experience of His restoration of wholeness in spirit, soul and body.
Prayer: Father God, I thank You for sending Jesus to be my Saviour, and that through Him there is a wonderful power to heal. As I seek to serve You and endeavour to show others something of the power of Jesus to heal, may it always be You working through me by the power of Your Holy Spirit I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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