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In the Crowd, or Among the Disciples?

Rev. Enoch Thompson | April 3, 2024 | John 6:1-5



Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with his disciples. John 6:3 (NIV)



When I think of football, I am tempted to put followers of the game into three categories, the spectators, the fans, and the fanatics. The spectators may chance on a game on television or in the neighbourhood park and spend some time amusing themselves with the skills of the players on the field. The fans commit to particular teams and follow their games with some interest. The fanatics are sold out to the game; they know the teams, the players, the history and the tactics of individual pairs and teams. They are willing to travel at their own expense to watch and support their teams and are most likely to miss their meals or fall sick when their team loses a match!


The Gospels often make a distinction between the crowds that milled around the Lord Jesus and the disciples who seemed to be closer to Him and tended to receive more intense and focused instruction. A further distinction is made of the Apostles who formed the inner circle with greater closeness and responsibility in the Master’s business of caring for the hapless souls of the masses.  Out text today makes such a difference. Do you see the movement from crowds to disciples’ verses 2 and 3, and then verse 5?


The crowds had been impressed with the miracles they had seen the Lord perform, and sure we need miracles from the God who works wonders! The crowds need handouts and physical satisfaction (the Lord pre-empted their need by His question in verse 5; “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?"). NIV. The disciples were attracted by something beyond the miracles, they were attracted and attached to the person and the teachings of the Master.



Who are you, among the crowd or a disciple? Determine to commit to Christ, to His person, His teachings, His death and His resurrection for your salvation. More than a spectator, become a fan, and a “fanatic.”


PRAYER: Lord, draw me deeper into your love. May I be lost in the beauty of staying with you, waiting on you, and being changed to be like you. Please grant that the crowds around your holy Name might be changed into disciples and Apostles. And please, begin with me. For your dear Name’s sake, Amen.




DAILY word study: MOUNTAINSIDE The word "mountainside" is translated from the Greek word "ὄρος" (oros), which simply means "mountain" or "hill." Mountains often serve as places of divine encounter and revelation in the Bible. For example, Moses received the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, and Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus often sought solitude and a quiet place for prayer and teaching, and mountainsides were frequently chosen for such purposes due to their secluded and elevated nature. In this context, Jesus went up to the mountainside near the Sea of Galilee to teach the crowds that had followed Him. The mountainside setting underscores the importance of finding a quiet place for prayer, reflection, and teaching, away from the distractions of everyday life. It also highlights Jesus' compassion and commitment to ministering to the needs of the people, even in remote locations. Reflections: Where do we go to seek solitude and communion with God? How can we create space in our lives for prayer, meditation, and spiritual nourishment, following Jesus' example of prioritizing time alone with the Father?

AUDIO: BAPTIST Daily Devotional | April 3, 2024



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The Baptist Daily Devotional is a collection of God-inspired messages that will help you grow in your faith and walk with Christ. Each day, you will find a scripture passage, a reflection, a prayer and a challenge to apply God's word to your life. The devotional is written by pastors and leaders of the Ghana Baptist Convention, who share their insights and experiences from serving God in various contexts and ministries. For example, you will learn how to trust God in times of trouble, how to share the gospel with others, how to pray effectively, how to deal with temptation, how to handle conflict and more. Whether you are a new believer or a mature Christian, the Baptist Daily Devotional will inspire you, encourage you and equip you to live for God's glory.
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