Other than His own resurrection, I believe that Jesus’ most significant miracle was the feeding of the five thousand. This miracle is mentioned in all four gospels and Jesus Himself makes reference to it in Matthew 16v5-11:
“When they went across the lake, the disciples forgot to take bread. “Be careful,” Jesus said to them. “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”
They discussed this among themselves and said, “It is because we didn’t bring any bread.”
Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, “You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? Do you still not understand? Don’t you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? How is it you don’t understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”
Jesus’ disciples had enjoyed the miracle but clearly not understood what Jesus’ had been trying to teach them. They had just witnessed Him feed five thousand plus people with five loaves and two fishes and now where worried because they had forgot to bring their packed lunch with them! Jesus is staggered but there lack of faith! If He could do a great miracle, could He not also do a small miracle? If He had fed five thousand, wasn’t it an easy matter to feed the disciples?
For everyone of us, Jesus has done the greatest miracle of all – He has saved us! He has cleansed us, forgiven us, given us eternal life and adopted us into His family! If He has done the greatest miracle in saving us, can He can not do all miracles? Surely miracles of healing, provision, protection and blessing are a small thing compared to our salvation? If He can save us – He can heal our bodies, supply all our needs and bless us with freedom, joy and peace! Surely all that is an easy thing for our Jesus! The Apostle Paul put it perfectly when he said “What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” or as The Message puts it “If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us?”
The feeding of the five thousand shows us that Jesus is our provider. Whatever our needs today the resources of heaven are vast and freely available to all those who would access them by faith.
The feeding of the five thousand also proves that God is a God of abundance! He didn’t just feed the five thousand but He gave them more than enough, so that there were twelve basketfuls left over! Jesus is a God of abundance! He doesn’t just give life, He gives life to the full! He doesn’t just give us peace, He gives us peace that passes all understanding. He doesn’t just give joy, He gives joy unspeakable and full of glory! He doesn’t just set us free, He sets us free indeed! He doesn’t just forgive us, He removes our sins as far as the east us from the west! He doesn’t just heal colds, He heals ALL our diseases! He doesn’t just show us grace, He lavishes it upon us! He doesn’t just anoint us, He causes our cups to overflow with the precious anointing oil!
Our God has prepared a table for us today. All who are thirsty and hungry can come and dine, the price has already been paid! Like Job we can say “my path was drenched with cream and the rock poured out for me streams of olive oil” (Job 29). Like the Psalmist we can “feast on the abundance of your house” and “drink from your river of delights.” (Psalm 36)
What a great God and what a great gospel!