23 June 2013

posted 20 Jun 2013, 20:50 by C S Paul   [ updated 20 Jun 2013, 20:51 ]

23 June 2013

Sermons Based on the Lectionary of the Syrian Orthodox Church

 Fifth Sunday after Pentecost 

Gospel Reading for this Sunday

Luke 9:10-17 New King James Version (NKJV)

Feeding the Five Thousand

Luke 9:10-17

10 And the apostles, when they had returned, told Him all that they had done. Then He took them and went aside privately into a deserted place belonging to the city called Bethsaida.

11 But when the multitudes knew it, they followed Him; and He received them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who had need of healing. 

12 When the day began to wear away, the twelve came and said to Him, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding towns and country, and lodge and get provisions; for we are in a deserted place here.”

13 But He said to them, “You give them something to eat.”

And they said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we go and buy food for all these people.” 

14 For there were about five thousand men.

Then He said to His disciples, “Make them sit down in groups of fifty.” 

15 And they did so, and made them all sit down.

16 Then He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the multitude. 

17 So they all ate and were filled, and twelve baskets of the leftover fragments were taken up by them.

Human Helplessness and Abundance of God

by Very Rev. Lazarus Remban

The miracle of loaves and fishes is very familiar to us and this is the only miracle of Jesus related in all four gospels.

When the Apostles had comeback from their tour our Lord took them to the neighborhood of Bethsaida, a remote village, for rest. But there also the people crowded, disturbing his privacy. But to Jesus, human need took precedence over everything.

The evening came, home was far away, and the people were tired and hungry. Jesus ordered his disciples to give them a meal.

This Gospel tells us many things, a few being:

1. Jesus was concerned that men were hungry.

It would be most interesting to work out how much time Jesus spent, not talking, but easing men's pain and satisfying their hunger. He still needs the service of men's hand. The mother, the nurse, the doctor, the friend, the parent, the social worker, they have all preached far more effective sermons than the eloquent orator.

2. Jesus' help was generous

There was enough, and more than enough. In love there is no nice calculation of the less and more. God is like that. God has created a world where there is more than enough for all, if people will share it.

3. There is a permanent truth in an action in time

In Jesus all men's needs are supplied. There is a hunger of the soul, there is in every man, sometimes at least a longing to find something in which he may invest his life. As St. Augustine says " Our hearts are restless until they rest in Him". St. Paul says, " My God will supply every need of yours" – even in the desert places of this life.