John 6 records the miracle of Jesus feeding five thousand people with five barley loaves and two small fish. The disciple Andrew said,
‘There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?’ (John 6:9).
What can we learn from this young boy and the miracle? Jesus could have performed this miracle with or without the young boy; however, the lad was about to learn a lesson he would never forget – one he would not have learned if he had not been there!
Let me say something that may sound silly. A person cannot follow and learn from Jesus if they are not interested. A person is really not interested in following Jesus if they aren’t reading God’s Word, obeying his Word, and meeting with others to worship him.
This boy was young. Religion is not just for grownups and old people. In the Bible, Joseph, Daniel and David were young people who were following God. Solomon wrote,
‘Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth, before the difficult days come’ (Eccles.12:1).
God knows the abilities of each and every young person. He expects all of us to obey him according to our ability.
‘Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right’ (Prov. 20:11 NIV).
Jesus took the young boy’s bread and fish. Literally, the term translated as ‘small fish’ indicates two small dried or pickled fish comparable to large sardines. This boy did not have much to eat and he was being asked to give up what he did have. By giving Jesus his fish and bread, this boy and the multitude was given more than enough to eat. We may not have much, but we have to be willing to give Jesus everything. However, we know that we will receive more than what we have given up.
Young people, you may have to give up your friends, activities you enjoy, popularity, or some other things. Yet you will receive a greater reward.
Read about the encounter in Matt. 14:13-21, Mark 6:30-44, Luke 9:10-17 and John 6:1-15
Jeff Edwards, The Church of God in Leigh