Imagine it for a moment. Five thousand men are there, along with an undisclosed number of women and children, sitting everywhere. They’re tired and hungry, and they all have a long walk home with no food in sight (Matthew 14:14-21).
There is nothing like a good dilemma to test one’s faith. That’s exactly what Philip faced when confronted with the question Jesus asked: “Where will we buy bread to feed these people?” (See John 6:1-6).
Always remember when Jesus asks a question, it’s not because He needs the information. As a matter of fact, Scripture records in John 6:6: “He himself knew what He would do.” Jesus was simply testing Philip’s faith. Jesus wanted from him what He always desires from us—faith. Instead of exercising faith, Philip gave Jesus what He already had—the facts.
Jesus is never unaware of the facts. Simply put, He knows. He knows the details of your life, as well as your overwhelming concerns. Philip’s short answer was: “Lord, no. It just can’t be done, and there are three reasons why …
- “There are too many people.
- “There’s not enough money.
- “It’s too late in the day anyhow.”
Sad to say, I still find that attitude here and there as I travel.
You’ll see it in some churches, and you’ll find it in the hearts of some people. Too much. Too little. Too late.
Suddenly, Andrew stepped up alongside a young child with his basket lunch of two small fish and five small loaves of bread. Just as Andrew was about to take delight in the fact he had found a possible solution, he caught a glimpse of the multitude and then said, “There is a lad here, but on second thought, I’m sorry I brought him, because what is this among so many?” (6:9).
At that very moment, Jesus asked for an investment—an investment of faith primarily, but also an investment of resources. The Savior looked at the child and said, “Son, if you will do just one thing, I can feed this crowd. Transfer what is in your hand into mine.”
That was the only instruction then and it’s the only instruction now. Just transfer the contents of your hand; but, inherent in that command is trust, abandon, confidence, and surrender to the Master.
Can you do that?