”Feeding The Five Thousand”
May the words of my mouth and the meditations of all our hearts be acceptable in thy sight, Oh Lord, Our King, Our Strength and Our Redeemer! AMEN
In the name of the Father,the Son,and the holy Spirit- Amen.
Today we celebrate the love of God and the peoples that He loves in the
island of Jamaica. You may have noticed that I said peoples? This is because as you will know the motto of Jamaica is; Out of Many – One People.
Jamaica is a nation of rainbow colours. African, Indian, Asian, Chinese, European; all making one people under God!
I deliberately said “Under God” because Jamaica is blessed by God as are all other nations. The fact that people rebel against Him does not stop God from blessing a nation.
Always remember it's the goodness or grace of God that leads people to to repentance! God forbears with us and gives us time to change /repent while He continues to bless and guide us.
In that blessed land of Jamaica,we see people using God given gifts in the areas of Music ,The Arts; Sports , Athletics; Education and Science. Many gifts for Jamaica and through Jamaica ...the world.!
There is so much I can say, and indeed has already been said in favour of Jamaica,and I have been warned by the powers that be not to exceed.......mins...
The most visible parts are the sons and daughters of Jamaica in these very visible areas,of music such as Harry Belafonte, Gregory Isaacs, Bob Marley, Desmond Dekker, Hezron, Shaggy, Jimmy Cliff or Usain Bolt if you think in terms of Athletics. And of course in engineering Politics,and most of all Religion!
There are many other gifted areas as I mentioned before and that's without mentioning what a lovely Tourist Attraction the island is for holidays, golf,and weddings! I can attest to the above -anyone seeking first hand information can see me afterwards!.
Today around this and other countries where Jamaicans have emigrated and settled, there will be diverse celebrations to honour the building of an independent nation and all the peoples who make it what it is;
Out of Many - One people! They will be enjoying the music and the food and looking forward to watching Usain Bolt and other Jamaican athletes at the Closing ceremony of the Commonwealth Games later! Here at All Saints ,immediately after this service there will be a short period of time until about 1.30pm when The Christian Community Church will be getting started with their service,we all will have a chance to sample some culinary delights from the Jamaicans!
Brothers,and sisters it would be remiss of me if I did not mention the pioneers – Those Jamaicans who instilled and displayed real courage and leadership in the 50's and 60's.I have been told that Jamaicans were the ones to stand up boldly in the trouble spots of Birmingham,Manchester and Brixton.As a relatively newcomer,anyone who wishes a fuller account can consult say...Mr.Ainsley Kennedy; Gladys Thompson,Dell Small and others!
Now did you realize that just as Jamaica built and is building, 'Out of many - one people', so God is making - 'Out of many nations One New Man'!
Jesus is building a people today who, if we will exercise faith in Him,i.e.do everything that He did,will develop a people - Jew and Gentile who are one in Him who love Him and do His will.!
Our Gospel today is taken from Matthew 14:13-21. It deals with the actual incident where Jesus and His disciples fed 5,000 men plus women and children.! that's about 15,000 people? Quite a crowd !
Jesus said that everything that He did His followers and disciples would be able to do! So as true followers or disciples of Jesus we have the power to do all that Jesus did! again.
Mat 14:19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass, and taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds.
Relax. Give thanks. Action . Give. Share
Jesus did not do the distribution and multiplication to the people. Jesus broke the bread and fish up and gave them to the disciples and it was in the hands of the disciples that the multiplication took place!
The disciples did it then and as disciples we can do the same today, wherever God has need to reach people and convince them of His goodness .In whatever way we can, we need to share
But when you read the Gospels, do you believe the incidents ? Are we believers who believe and therefore can do!
If we are, we will be united together building 'one new man'. A people who exhibit God's gifts, who demonstrate the fruits of the Spirit and who live lives guided by the 'Law of Christ'.
Mat 14:16 But Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17 They said to him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.” 18 And he said, “Bring them here to me.”
Notice that Jesus said to the disciples - “You give them something to eat”. And when they baulked at this He said, “OK, I'll do it”.
He expected that after the miracles that they had done already, the disciples would see that they had the power to do it!
If God says you can do something then you have been given the authority and power to do it! Are you starting to see what you have today as a disciple of Jesus?
Mat 14:20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over.
After feeding all the people there are 12 baskets of food left over! Whenever God 'gives' He is not just generous, He is an over supplier We may limit what God gives to us but we should see that He wants to be a God of 'more that enough' to us!
So we see that Jesus wants to provide physically for His people and through His people to bring others to Join the 'one new man'. Also it's not just our physical well-being that God is interested in.,he is inetested in our eternal spiritual well being
Mat 14:14 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick.
God and Jesus in us want to heal the sick in mind and body, and Jesus gave us the authority and power to do the same!
Mat 14:12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.
This is what Jesus said and true believers will believe Him and get close to Him so that we can follow His example.
Today we are celebrating 'Jamaican Independence Day' and we do so remember-the motto
JAMAICA; Out of many – One people,
And, on this day also let us remember that Jesus is doing an even greater work in us if we will let Him.! “
To quote Longfellow-
LIVES OF GREAT MEN ALL REMIND US WE CAN MAKE OUR LIVES SUBLIME, AND DEPARTING LEAVE BEHIND US FOOTPRINTS IN THE SANDS OF TIME!
'One New Man', a new creation who loves God and puts faith in Him. A new creation who draws close to God and so does all the works that Jesus did and as we grow in grace even greater things will be done
So let's be believe and be doers of the word and not just hearers and “May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God,and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all now and forever”.