What's In Your Basket

Bible Book: John  6 : 1-15
Subject: Small Things; Jesus, Power of; Jesus, Bread of Life; Stewardship

If you visit my office you will be able to see by the diploma and degrees hanging on the wall that I’ve graduated from High School, college, and seminary…a total of 17 years of educational studies - and I learned a great deal in that way! I’m thankful for my formal education. But as I look back over my life I would have to say that some of the most valuable lessons in life have come to me not in a textbook or a classroom but rather by simply watching other people.

I bring this up because that’s how I want us to study this week’s text. I want us to “watch” the people John tells us about in these verses to see what we can learn from each of them. I know this isn’t the usual way we study the Bible - but I think that taking a different slant at studying this particular text is important because our story is so very FAMILIAR. In fact, it is one of the most beloved stories in all the Bible. I’m sure we all have pictures of this event in our minds taken from Sunday School lesson flannel graphs…or children’s Bible story books - pictures like this one. As you can see I’m referring to a story known as “The Feeding of the 5000.” How many have heard of this story before? I think that’s about 100%. And don’t get me wrong - I’m glad you’ve heard this story. It’s good that we are all so familiar with this text.

The problem is that our FAMILIARITY can be a HINDRANCE because it makes us think we already know everything we need to know. So - if you’re tempted to “check out” and surf the web on your Blackberry or your iPhone for the next 30 minutes - instead of listening to my message don’t. Hang with me because we’re going to look at this beloved story in a different way - a new way that I believe God can use to help us see new things…truth we’ve never seen in this familiar story before.

And - this story MUST contain important truth - truth we must not miss - because it is the only miracle that God inspired all four Gospel writers to include in their accounts. I for one think it’s cool that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John each include this story - but in ways that bring out the part of the story that spoke to each of them personally. For example, Matthew and Luke are obviously most interested in THE MIRACLE itself because they tell of how Jesus multiplied the five loaves and two fish without much embellishment. Mark, on the other hand, focuses on the COMPASSION of Jesus by stressing that Jesus fed the multitude out of His great love. And finally, in John’s account the telling revolves around the HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE of the event. John also stresses the fact that Jesus is Himself the BREAD OF LIFE…because only a relationship with Him will satisfy men spiritually.

I’ve drawn attention to these various gospel differences because that kind of VARIANCE in the telling of the SAME story by the four different writers…well, it’s evidence of the RELIABILITY of these men as historians. You see, the things they AGREE ON are such that this story could not have been made up by each man separately. And the DIFFERENCES are such that they obviously were not collaborating. So - if they were not made up separately and if they were not made up in collaboration, the only remaining possibility is that they were not made up at all. They are true - which they ARE! The miracle we know so well - the one we read about in all four gospels really happened.

With all that in mind let’s prayerfully turn to John 6 and follow along as I read the first 15 verses and as I do “watch” the people who are part of the account of this beloved miracle: 1 – Some time after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias), 2 – and a great crowd of people followed Him because they saw the miraculous signs He had performed on the sick. 3 – Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with His disciples. 4 – The Jewish Passover Feast was near. 5 – When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward Him, He said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” 6 – He asked this only to test him, for He already had in mind what He was going to do. 7 – Philip answered Him, “Eight months’ wages would not buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!” 8 – Another of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up, 9 – Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?” 10 – Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” There was plenty of grass in that place, and the men sat down, about five thousand of them. 11 – Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish. 12 – When they had all had enough to eat, He said to his disciples, “Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.” 13 – So they gathered them and filled twelve baskets with the pieces of the five barley loaves left over by those who had eaten. 14 – After the people saw the miraculous sign that Jesus did, they began to say, “Surely this is the Prophet Who is to come into the world.” 15 – Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make Him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by Himself.

Okay - before we study this familiar story by “watching” the people in it let me try and give you a mental picture of the SETTING. As John says in verse 1, this miraculous feeding occurred “after these things” and in these three words represented anywhere from six months to a year. Here’s a quick synopsis of the “things” that happened during this time period:

Jesus’ drumhead trial that we studied last week was concluded.

Afterwards, Jesus left Jerusalem for Galilee where he had an extensive ministry preaching, teaching, casting out demons, and performing many miracles - or SIGNS as John puts it.

Because of all this, Jesus became very popular such that everywhere He went He was followed by HUGE CROWDS.

I mean, as soon as word got out that Jesus was in the area, people would pour in from everywhere. They would do this at all hours of the day and night - so if Jesus wanted to be alone with His disciples, He had to be very intentional about it. And, being alone with them was important because only one year remained before Calvary and Jesus had much to teach His followers in that time.

Plus, Jesus needed rest. He was under a continuous strain due to the demands of these crowds. And so were His disciples. Mark’s gospel tells us they had just returned from an extensive preaching tour of their own. So, in short, Jesus and His little band needed rest. They needed to get away - which should help us to see the importance for our own times of solitude and rest. In his Gospel, Mark puts it this way. He says,“Because so many people were coming and going that [Jesus and His disciples] did not even have a chance to EAT, Jesus said to them, ‘Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.’” (Mark 6:31)

Well, that’s what was happening in the first three verses of our passage. Our Lord was taking His followers away for a much-needed retreat of sorts. John tells us that Jesus went “over the Sea of Galilee” heading for a part of the shoreline that was fairly remote and desolate…a place where they could go and not be disturbed.

But the text ALSO says that, the crowds who followed Him right up to the shoreline as he departed were very persistent. I mean, apparently they stood there long enough to watch after He sailed off to see exactly where on the other side of the lake he landed…and then they followed Him by walking around the top of the shoreline. Luke’s gospel tells us that Jesus was making for a region near the village of Bethsaida which would mean the people walked NINE MILES to get to where He was.

Well, it wasn’t long after Jesus and His crew beached the boat, climbed up the hillside, and begun their little retreat….it wasn’t long before they looked and saw from the dust cloud on the horizon that the multitude had followed them. But - Jesus wasn’t angry for their persistence. No - He was compassionate and empathetic. His first thought wasn’t about His own weariness but of that of the crowd. He knew they would be tired and hungry after their long walk. After all, by this time it was past the middle of the afternoon and the people would not have eaten since breakfast.

Now - with all that in mind, let’s LOOK at this familiar story from the perspective of “people watchers.” What can we learn from this familiar miracle…by stepping back and taking a closer look at the people involved?

I. Watch the CROWD

The first “person” I want us to zoom in on - the first person I want us to “watch” is not an individual but a group. Let’s take a closer look at that huge CROWD.

To be accurate - in verse 2 John calls this not a “crowd” but “a great multitude.” And that wasn’t an exaggeration. This was a LARGE group of people. Verse 10 says that there were about 5,000 men but Matthew 14:21 gives us the best tally when he says, “And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children…” which means there were somewhere between 15 - 20 thousand people there!

If you’ve ever been to one of our Christmas Eve services then you know that about 500 people usually pack into this room to celebrate Jesus’ birth. That night we fill this room to overflowing. So that means there would have been the equivalent of: forty Redland Christmas Eve crowds following Jesus up that remote mountainside. Imagine that! And, as I said, it was getting late so all these thousands of people were tired from their long journey and very HUNGRY.

Now - when WE think about being hungry it’s not that big of a deal. We usually eat too much anyway. When hunger hits, our main problem is trying to decided which fast food restaurant to stop at. Let’s see: “Chipoltle or Cal Tort? Cheeburger Cheeburger or 5 Guys? KFC or Chicken out?” But hunger - genuine hunger - was the constant companion of these people. It was the enemy they were always struggling to keep at bay. I mean, harvests were uncertain. Usually there was not enough to eat.

I’m reminded of the classic novel The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings. It tells the story of a pioneer family living in the Florida wilderness during the early 19th century. The little boy in this family finds a fawn and wants to make it his pet but in spite of all his efforts to prevent it, when the fawn grows up he breaks into the corn field and nearly destroys their crop. The father responds by shooting the yearling deer and in anger the little boy says hateful things to his father and then runs away. He’s gone for several days and after going without food he finally realizes why his dad had to do what he did. The little boy understands how serious HUNGER is and he comes home a repentant son.

Well, this crowd - this multitude understood the lesson this little boy learned. They knew what it meant to be REALLY HUNGRY. I’m sure that most of them were living just above the poverty level because this wasn’t a rich area. I mean, it wasn’t Montgomery County Maryland by any stretch of the imagination. So, as they climbed up that hillside these people were in need of more than a snack…and I think they kept following Jesus instead of stopping to get food, because they had seen Him do miracles. They knew He could fill their stomachs. They had seen His power - so they doggedly followed Him with growling stomachs and blister   -   covered feet.

And - I don’t mean to sound uncompassionate but basically these hungry people were following Jesus for themselves. They were looking for what they could get out of our Lord.

I mean, they might have been following JESUS, but you can rest assured they were looking out for THEMSELVES the whole time. In short this was a large group of “Jesus I’m following You to see what I can get out of it” kind of people. I say this because John tells us that after Jesus miraculously filled their stomachs, He had to withdraw from them because they wanted to seize Him and make Him their king by force. They wanted Jesus for their own purposes. They were looking for a Messiah who would be King and Conqueror, Who would not only put food in their bellies….but also set His foot upon the eagle’s neck and drive the Romans from Palestine. They wanted a ruler Who would change the status of Israel from that of a subject nation to that of a world power. They wanted Jesus for what He could do for them.

Now turn your eyes from looking at these people and look at yourself for a moment. As you “watch” yourself - as you review your own life - can you see a time when you were ever like this multitude? Sure you can because we are all that way! MOST of the time when we go to Jesus in prayer it’s to GET - we want to GET His help, His strength, His guidance. More often than not, just like this crowd, we follow Jesus to see what we can get out of Him….and don’t get me wrong. Jesus encourages us to ask for His help in life. But - if that’s ALL we do - then our walk with Him is far too one   -   sided. I mean, we should do more than got to Him to ASK for something. We should also go to Him to OFFER something. Our morning prayers should involve phrases like, “God, take my life and use it today.” We need to be like the little boy who had never been to church before…but became a Christian through the efforts of a church bus ministry. The first time he came to church he saw the offering passed and with the memory of what Jesus had done for him fresh in his mind wanted to give something back but he had no money…so he put the offering plate on the floor and stood in it saying, “Jesus, I don’t have anything to give You today other than me. So I give You me!” I wonder - how much more could be done for the sake of the Gospel if Christians were more like this little boy from the bus ministry and less like this great multitude? How many more would hear of God’s love - how many more would experience it through the compassionate actions of Christ   -   followers…if more of us focused on GIVING to Jesus instead of GETTING from Him?


The second person I want us to “watch” in this story is PHILIP.

So, put yourself in that setting again and back up a bit. Jesus and the disciples are sitting on a grassy hillside overlooking the peaceful Sea of Galilee. They’re having their retreat. There’s a gentle breeze blowing off the lake and the sound of water gently lapping the shore. Things are quiet and peaceful and then they look down the hill and see this throng of people coming. John 1:44 tells us that Philip was from this area and maybe because of that Jesus looks over at him, then He glances back down the hill and points…saying, “Here they come. What are we going to do Philip? What would you advise?”

Now - of course Jesus didn’t ask this question because He didn’t know what to do. John reminds us Jesus’s questioning was part of His plan. He asked Philip as a test. Probably the right answer would have been for Philip to say, “I don’t know Jesus. What do YOU think we ought to do?” But Philip didn’t do that did he? No - instead Philip engaged his BRAIN in an attempt to answer the question himself.

Of course, different kind of people have different kind of brains, don’t they?
Some have philosophical brains. They like to take everything to some really deep level.
Some have dramatic brains. They get all melodramatic and poetical about everything.
Some have mathematical brains. They make good engineers and accountants.

And I think that’s the kind of brain Philip had. Look at how he answered Jesus question and see if you don’t agree. In verse 7 Philip said, “Eight months’ wages would not buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!” Imagine what it would be like if you went out to eat and when the bill came it looked more like your W   -   2 form than a restaurant check! If I got a bill that was that high! I would pass out!

That’s the mental image Philip’s mathematical brain gave him. It calculated the size of the crowd and the cost of bread and came to that conclusion: huge multitude…one bite per person…cost: 200 denarii. I’m not sure where Philip got that number - 200 denarii. Maybe that was how much they had in the group till at the moment but basically Philip was saying, “Jesus, I know that at Cana You turned the water into wine. I know You healed that nobleman’s son. I know You made the paralyzed man walk. But there are 20 thousand empty stomachs headed our way!

And we just don’t have the funds necessary to feed all these people. Even if we completely drain our accounts, we would only have enough to give everyone a scrap of food…plus I’m from this area and I can tell you there isn’t a Wegmans or a Giant or even a MacDonalds anywhere.” Philip was being practical. He was being a realist. He saw the number of people. He saw the amount of money. He knew what could be bought for that much and came to the only reasonable conclusion. It couldn’t be done.

Now - stop looking at Philip and look back at your own life for a moment. Are you ever that way? Do you ever measure what God can do by the size of your bank account? Do you ever calculate Jesus’ abilities in a situation such that they never exceed your own? Sure - we all do that! Many times we refuse to attempt truly great things for God because we don’t factor into our calculations how GREAT God really is. We limit what we attempt to what we know WE can do.

When I was in seminary my favorite professor was Clyde T. Francisco. I’ve told you about him before. Here’s his picture. When HE was in seminary he pastored what was known of back then as a “half   -   time church.” And it was pretty much like it sounds. Their church only met half of the time. Every other Sunday Dr. Francisco would leave the seminary campus and drive out to this church and preach. Of course, as a half   -   time church they only paid him a half   -   time salary. One day the trustees came to Dr. Francisco and said, “Pastor we can’t afford to pay you a half   -   time salary anymore. We think we should cut back to quarter   -   time. What do you think?” Dr. Francisco thought a moment and then he said, “Here’s what I think you should do. Start worshiping EVERY Sunday. Pay me FULL   -   time salary. Your problem is you are worshiping your bank accounts more than you are God.” And in essence he was right. They were thinking like Philip here. They SAID they were doing GOD’S work. They SAID they were relying on HIM….but in reality they were relying on THEIR OWN abilities. Fortunately - the people in this little country church had enough faith and wisdom to do what their half   -   time pastor suggested. They voted to become a full   -   time church and paid him a full   -   time salary and God blessed that little congregation with amazing growth - because they learned to trust Him to meet their needs.

Listen: Is there a mountain-sized problem in your life and as you think REALISTICALLY…you tell yourself, “There is no way I can handle this.” Well, you are probably right because life is full of problems and nightmares that we can’t handle on our own - but that’s why the Gospel is such good news. You see, when we invite Jesus into our hearts and lives He really does come in - and from then on we don’t have to handle life’s mountain   -   sized problems on our own. From then on, we have ALMIGHTY GOD right there to help us. In our study this past Wednesday one thing we learned is that the thing God most often says in the Bible is this: “I will be with you!”

Could it be that Jesus is testing you as He did Philip that day? Is He allowing some overwhelming difficulty to come as a test to help prove to You His Power and Love? Or - is He calling you to do something that is beyond YOUR resources - something that will force you to rely on HIS power and provision?


Let’s move on. The third person I want us to “watch” is ANDREW.

Now - in my mind’s eye Andrew is kind of like Robert Barone on the sitcom, “Everybody Loves Raymond.” Do you remember that show? Robert is not known as “Robert” - but rather as “Raymond’s brother” because everybody LOVES Raymond. In spite of his superior size, Robert is always in Raymond’s more popular shadow. I think it must have been something like that for Andrew because he is always introduced as “Peter’s brother.” And - if you have a brother or sister who is more popular than you then you know how Andrew felt. People would say, “Here’s Andrew” and the reply would be, “Andrew who?” “You know - Peter’s brother” “Oh - him!”

Look at verses 8 and 9 where it says, “Another of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up, ‘Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?’”

Now for just a minute I want you to try and get the flannel graph picture you saw as a kid in Sunday School out of your mind because this boy didn’t just present himself out of thin air. No - Andrew had to go looking for him. And - we know Andrew was good at this kind of thing because every time we read about him in the Bible he’s finding people that need to be brought to Jesus. So that’s what Andrew does. He hears Jesus asking Philip about how they can get enough food to feed all these people…and he immediately heads off into the crowd looking for people who have food. But out of all those thousands of people, the only one Andrew can find with any food is a young boy who’s mom wouldn’t let him leave home without his lunch box.

Now - I know that Andrew’s statement in verse 9 doesn’t appear to have much more faith than Philip’s. But the way I see it - Andrew goes a step further than his fellow faithless disciple. I mean unlike Philip who basically said, “This situation is hopeless…”…unlike Philip, Andrew said, “I’ll see what I can do and I’ll trust Jesus with the rest.” So he found this little boy and brought him and his paltry lunch to our Lord.

And that’s a principle in this familiar story that we simply MUST SEE - because you never know what will happen when we bring someone to Jesus. I mean, God can take a life - any life - and do a miracle with it even today - like He did with that little boy Andrew brought.

There is a tale of an old German schoolmaster in the middle ages who, when he entered his class of boys in the morning, he would to remove his cap and BOW ceremoniously to them. He did this every day. Once he was asked why he did this. He said, “You never know what one of these boys may someday become.” And he was right because one of the boys was named Martin Luther. This schoolmaster was so right. I mean, we DO never know what possibilities we are releasing when we bring someone to Jesus Christ. So many times we write off people…sinners we think are not worth our time…but God never writes people off. He can take any life and rebirth it and do amazing things in it. Looking back at my years in Youth Ministry I can see that usually it was the trouble makers…the unlikely ones that Jesus has used most! Let me put it this way. In hindsight I will say I have discovered a powerful mathematical equation - superior in significance even to Eienstein’s E = MC squared and here it is:

“JESUS + an individual = AMAZING POTENTIAL!”

And this equation can be applied to any person - no matter what their size! “Watching” Andrew’ part of this familiar story helps us to see this.

IV. Watch the BOY

And that leads to one more person I want us to watch and it’s the star of this story - THE BOY with his lunch.

So look with me at this little “lad” who Andrew found….this kid who brought his lunch to Jesus and as you look, don’t get it in your head that he was a big eater. I mean when we say five loaves and two fish it sounds like two grilled sock   -   eye salmon and five of those loaves of bread they bring you at Macaroni Grill! But that’s not what we’re talking about. No - these loaves were more like little flat “Twinkie   -   sized” biscuits and the fish were more like tiny salt   -   cured sardines - fish that was typically used like a spread to give these dry barley biscuits some flavor.

Speaking of barley bread - it was the cheapest of all bread in that day. In fact it was bread that most people turned their noses up at. To show you how people felt about this bread, in the Mishnah there was a regulation about the sin offering that a woman who has committed adultery must bring. For ordinary sins people were to bring bread made of wheat but the Mishnah said that in the case of adultery the flour should be barley flour, for barley is the food of beasts…and the woman’s sin was the sin of a beast. This tells us that barley bread was the bread of the very poor. This little boy was carrying the lowest quality bread available to people of that day.

I don’t know if you’ve ever been poor enough that you didn’t know where your next meal was coming from but if you have…then you know it wasn’t a casual thing for this boy to give up his food that day but he did. I mean, this little guy wasn’t like the crowd…trying to get something out of Jesus. He wasn’t like Philip, calculating ways this wasn’t going to work. No he simply brought everything he had to Jesus. He did not have much to offer - but out of what he had - Jesus found the materials to make a miracle happen. By the way, one commentator said that there were two miracles that afternoon…one that Jesus fed five thousand people and the other that this little boy had not already eaten his lunch! In any case, the fact that someone who probably went to bed hungry most nights was willing to share is proof that someone raised this kid right. His parents didn’t have enough money to feed him the best FOODS but they did feed him the best WISDOM. They taught him the importance of sharing. Think of it. There would have been one less miracle in Scripture if that boy had withheld his lunch. So parents never doubt the power of your parenting!

And hear me on this. Jesus Christ wants what we can bring to Him. It may be that the world is denied miracle after miracle and triumph after triumph because we will not bring to Christ what we have and what we are. I agree with D. L. Moody who said, “The world has yet to see what God can and will do with one man or woman who dedicates their lives totally to His use.” Little is always much in the hands of Christ. Nothing is insignificant when it is in God’s hands and this truth is seen throughout the Bible.

For example: what is as insignificant as DUST? Nothing. Crops won’t even grow in it but dust became a MAN in God’s hands.
The JAWBONE OF AN ASS is insignificant. But God used it in the hands of Samson to kill a thousand soldiers of the army of the enemies of Israel.
A SHEPHERD’S ROD is insignificant but it became powerful when God put it in the hands of Moses.
A boy’s SLING is unimportant but God used it to kill a giant.
And what is more insignificant than a POOR VIRGIN PEASANT GIRL? Yet God took a girl like that named Mary and used her to bring the Redeemer into our world

Don’t ever make the mistake of thinking that what you have is insignificant and useless.

Well, you know the rest of the story. Jesus had the disciples seat the people. The exact wording He used was, “Have them RECLINE” and this was the way you “sat” when you got ready to eat back then. I mean, this was a position of expectation. It was sort of like Jesus said, “Get your fork and spoon and plates ready.” Then, BEFORE the miracle Jesus gave thanks…a principle of gratitude we should practice! Afterwards, He began to break those barley cakes and fish in half again and again and again and again and again and again…passing it to the disciples who then passed it to the people. It must have gone on for quite some time. I mean, imagine feeding all those thousands like that. And - I wonder what the expression on the little boy’s face looked like as each time Jesus reached into his lunch basket to get another loaf. Did he think: “I thought mom only packed 5 loaves. That’s 6, 7, 8, 9, 10! Where is this coming from?! And I thought she only gave me two fish….that’s 3, 4, 50, 60…etc.” It must have been like those magicians who pull huge things like lamp stands and hockey sticks out of little bags! I mean Jesus KEPT PULLING OUT more and more food until the people experienced something they rarely experienced: FULL STOMACHS! John’s wording literally says the people were “glutted or fed to the limits of their stomach capacity.” In other words, they were stuffed - couldn’t eat another bite! Then, when the people had eaten their fill, Jesus asked His disciples to take the baskets they each used to carry their luggage and gather up the fragments that were left. When they were done they had 12 baskets full of left-overs!


Now some liberal theologians try to explain away this miracle. They say things like, the disciples had a cave where they had stored tons of bread and fish in anticipation of this kind of thing. Others say the people were so moved by the little boy’s generosity that they brought out their own sack lunches to share - which doesn’t make sense because remember Andrew had searched the crowd and only found food on the kid. But the thing that best counters the statements of people who try to explain away this miracle is the context. It just doesn’t support that kind of thinking. Why else would each of the disciples include this story in their gospels? Why else would the people respond to what happened by trying to make the miracle-working Jesus their king? In verse 26 Jesus Himself said the people continued to follow Him because He fed them all with the lunch of a small boy. So this was a MIRACLE - this was a GOD thing! And by including it in His book four times, God is saying, “Listen, you take care of the addition and I’ll handle the multiplication. You bring Me what you have and I’ll do a miracle with it! Be like this little boy. Bring Me your ‘little’ because with Me little is always much!”

Friends listen to me. The same Jesus Who walked across that grassy hillside and did this miracle is the same Jesus Who is walking in our midst this morning. With that in mind let me ask: As you “watch” yourself - as you evaluate your own life - who are you most like? Are you the crowd? Have you just come here this morning because you’re looking for what you can get out of it? Are you here just to have your needs met? Maybe you’re more like Philip. You know what Jesus is asking you to do, but you think realistically - and conclude, “There’s no way. It just doesn’t add up.” Well, you might have walked in here this morning like the crowd or Philip. But here’s what I’m asking you now. I’m asking you to leave here like the little boy. I’m asking you to turn whatever you have over to Jesus. And this isn’t necessarily about your offering. This is about your life. This is about Jesus being Lord of every part of it. Being like this little boy - turning whatever you have over to Jesus could entail several different kinds of decisions. It could mean your deciding to publicly profess Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior this morning. It could mean coming forward and asking to become a member of this church. It could mean saying YES to some thing God has told you to do - something that’s beyond your capabilities saying, “I don’t have the resources necessary to do this but what I have is Yours God. Take it and multiply it for Your glory.”

Do you remember what Jesus did back in verse 5 when He saw the crowds coming? He looked over to Philip and basically said, “You know what needs to be done. What are you going to do about it?” This morning, you know what needs to be done. What are you going to do about it? Let’s all stand and sing - and let’s all respond now as God leads.

Let the PEACE OF CHRIST rule in your hearts
since as members of one body you were called to peace.
Let the WORD OF CHRIST dwell in you richly
and whatever you do…in word or in deed
Do it all in the NAME OF CHRIST
giving thanks to God the Father.
through Him.