Conversations with Jesus: The Lad with the Lunch
“Conversations with Jesus: The Lad with the Lunch” preached by Pastor Mike Ray at Hopewell Baptist Church on Sunday morning, 7/11/2021.
John 6:1–11 “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.”
Father, would You bless now, this time we have? Just a little bit of time, a lot of preparation. Some people have traveled an hour just to get to church. Some single parents got some kids ready all by themselves just to get here. Bus drivers drove buses, people cleaned buildings, choir and special music rehearsed. Thank You for all the labor., and here we are — we’ve got a few minutes to talk about Your Word. It’s miracle-working. Do a miracle in our hearts today. Lord, I pray that you would feed us just like You fed these hungry people years ago. In Jesus’ name, we ask, Amen.
I have been on this mountain where this miracle took place… not during the time of the miracle(!), but it’s that place many of you saw on the Israel trips we’ve taken. They call that the Hill or the Mount of the Loaves and Fishes. The Catholic church has actually built a building over the place where the lad handed the lunch to Jesus, or so they say. Like they know that was the exact place. Who knows? But what a wonderful miracle took place on this hillside.
You say, Pastor, what’s the background to the story here? It said, “after these things.” So, what had happened? Jesus, of course, Who had been born in Bethlehem — it’s 30 years later, and He turns water into wine. And word starts getting out. This Guy is a miracle worker. In John 4, He heals someone. Remember, the woman at the well? He heals her soul, and she tells the whole city. In John chapter 5, a man is laying at a pool, and Jesus reaches down and tells him to pick up his bed and heals him. Now all these things are starting to get out. Good news back then traveled fast. And so, they had heard about Jesus raising the dead, healing, the blinded eyes, healing the cripple, and word had come out. So now everywhere Jesus went there were multitudes. He was like a rock star. It was like when a famous politician — when news got out, they wanted to be there and maybe see a miracle.
Not only that, they wanted to hear him speak. One of the guards said, “No man ever spoke like this before.” And sometimes Jesus would hold people spellbound for three days. They wouldn’t leave. They wouldn’t eat. They just sat there and listened to His words. By the way, that’s part of what’s going to happen up in Heaven. We’ll get to sit at His feet and hear Him speak, and He’ll know your name. He’ll know all about you, and we will never have to leave His presence.
So, now the crowds are starting to come. Jesus and his disciples get off the boat. Now they’re heading up the hill. Thousands of people — men are stopping their jobs: They’re stopping their pottery. They’re not watching the sheep. They’re stopping their construction. They’re heading up, taking the days off work. They’re just mobbing Jesus.
And there’s a little lad the story. The Bible doesn’t give his name. “Lad” probably means he wasn’t quite a young man. He could have been in 5th or 6th grade, maybe young junior high. He was simply called “a lad.” No name, but he was in the crowd. I can imagine him coming to his mother that day saying, “Hey mom, can I have off school today? I hear Jesus is in town. I want to hear Him, and I want to see Him do a miracle.” His mom, being like most moms, probably would have said, “No, you have school today.” “Well, I heard the disciples can sign off for us, and we can get an excuse. The disciples will sign, and it’ll be like a field trip. You know, this is like history, mom.” “Okay, I’ll let you go. How long you’re going to be gone?” “I don’t know. Jesus talks for a long time. Maybe I can stand in line and get His autograph or get a little selfie. Maybe someone would draw a picture of us together or something. Mom, I just want to stay all day.”
And I imagine the mom probably at that time said, “Well you’re going to need a lunch.” And I imagine the boy said, “Mom, I don’t want to bring a lunch. No one else is bringing a lunch.” Son, I don’t want you to be hungry. No son of mine is going to starve while he’s watching Jesus preach.” And so, he had a little lunch, and he goes.
I want to just give you several thoughts about the story quickly. Number one, we see the Lord. The Bible said, “He saw that the people were hungry.” I want to say this: He sees your need. Maybe no one knows what you need this morning, but Jesus sees it. Jesus sees past the eyes. He sees past the outside. He sees past the hurts. He sees past all that, and He sees this is something they need. The word love simply means seeing a need and meeting it. And that’s what Jesus does.
Hopewell Baptist Church is an Independent Baptist Church in Napa, California pastored by Mike Ray. It is Bible-based with a warm, friendly atmosphere. Hopewell is dedicated to bringing the water of life to the Napa Valley and beyond.