For they considered not the miracle of the loaves. . . .Mark 6:52a
This verse is at the end of a familiar and incredible story. The disciples, who were in a fierce storm, had been confronted by Christ walking on the water. Many great details are given in the three gospel accounts of the event (even Peter walked on water for a short time!). After Jesus got into the ship, the storm immediately stopped (Mt. 14:32, Mk. 6:51).
This verse is Mark’s conclusion of the story and is an explanation for the disciples’ great amazement that he described in verse 51 (they were sore amazed in themselves beyond measure, and wondered). They were blown away! They couldn’t believe what they had just experienced. Although, this is an explanation, it actually reads more like an indictment.
Remember that they had just witnessed the feeding of five thousand men, beside women and children (Mt. 14:21b). Jesus had taken a little boy’s lunch (five loaves and two fishes) and fed an entire multitude (with 12 baskets left over). On top of that, they had not just been spectators of that event. Then he [Jesus] took the five loaves and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed them, and brake, and gave to the disciples to set before the multitude (Lk. 9:16). They were involved. They had been participants in a mighty manifestation of God.
Fast forward. They were shocked when Jesus delivered them from their storm. The questions quickly roll in. Most prominently, how on earth could they be so surprised when Jesus did what He did? Many answers could be proposed, but Mark pinpoints the issue. They considered not the miracle of the loaves.
There was a lack of thought (meditation) put into what Jesus had done. The absence of careful consideration is what led them to be amazed when Jesus “actually” came through. I also believe that it is what caused them to be as distraught as they were during the storm (even as Jesus was walking on the sea to rescue them).
The disciples’ experience offers lessons for all of us. First, it is amazing how fleeting a miracle can be in our minds (especially when confronted with a personal struggle like these disciples were). Second, it is possible to be around a miracle or even a participant in it without fully understanding Who He is or what He is willing and capable of doing. You can be in an atmosphere where God is undeniably and powerfully at work and still not “get it.”
Truthfully, these lessons are not very positive. Nevertheless, learn them well! There is a need for careful consideration of what He does. You never know how that consideration is going to help you in the future!
Micah PerryPosted by Pastor Micah Perry on Apr.11, 2015