Read: John 6:1-15
Up to this point, you’ve looked into the introductory poem and story of John 1 that parallels this gospel to Genesis 1. You’ve experienced Jesus’s first recorded sign of turning water into wine and its importance. Jesus doesn’t perform signs and wonders to show off. Each sign and wonder is intentional and relates to the crowd or audience He is with. Each sign holds its own cultural significance. This is why they’re a big deal in reshaping the way each audience views what, up until Jesus challenged it, were simply cultural norms.
In today’s passage, we learn that Jesus crossed over the Sea of Galilee to go to the Sea of Tiberias. John 6:4 makes the reader aware of the miracle Jesus performed for this crowd and then of the large, curious crowd awaiting Him. They wanted to know who this man was, who claimed to be the Son of God.
Jesus knew what would reach this crowd of people. In his disciples’ search for food for the crowd, they came across a young boy who had “five barley loaves and two fish” for his lunch. Jesus multiplied it to feed the people. That day, more than 5,000 people observed the miracle performed by the Son of God. Jesus did not just give them the bare minimum either. He gave them more than enough, so much so that there were twelve baskets of leftovers.
In verse 14, these same people proclaimed that Jesus was the Prophet that came into the world and tried to take Him by force to make Him King. This caused Jesus to withdraw into the mountains for safety.
This isn’t because Jesus did not come to redeem the world. Jesus will one day reign as king, not only over Israel but the whole world. But first, it was necessary for Him to die as a sacrifice for sin.
As a Jewish man, Jesus worked to meet his audience where they were at. He pointed them towards the plan for redemption that was far greater than they could fathom.
When Jesus speaks to people and performs signs and wonders, he meets them as they are, where they are, in a way that relates to them. How has Jesus met you right where you are? How can you take the time to be grateful for that without immediately expecting more?