“HOW IS IT YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND THAT I DID NOT SPEAK TO YOU CONCERNING BREAD?” Matthew 16:11
I just realized something while reading the story of the feeding of the 5 thousand and 4 thousand that I didn’t realize before and wanted to share with you all.
I ended up realizing this from a conversation today where someone said how they didn’t realize Jesus had used loaves and fish to feed the crowds more than once. She was referring to the cases in Matthew 14:13-21 (The feeding of the 5,000) and Mathew 15:32-39 (The feeding of the 4,000). A gentlemen in the conversation then asked her, “Who multiplied the loaves and fish?” Naturally, that seemed like bit of an odd question because we all know who did; all who guessed said God the Father and Jesus did. But then we were told to look again, more closer this time, so I took a look at it and guessed could it have been the disciples through the power of God who multiplied the bread? So, still it was God ultimately because it is His power, but working through the disciples. That was only my guess, but after all that I got to thinking about the significance of this bread.
I used to think the message in both stories were just about God being able to supply our needs but now I think this story is more than that, although God does supply our needs. The bread and what it symbolized I overlooked and I think the disciples did as well & perhaps that was the reason why later Jesus said to the disciples when warning them about the leaven of the pharisees then the disciples wondering among themselves saying, “Was it because we didn’t bring bread?”. Jesus said, “How is it you do not understand that I did not speak to you concerning bread?” This made me think how come all this time I didn’t realize even the story with the feeding of the 5 and 4 thousand was more than about literal food, literal bread and fish that is, but could it have meant the spreading of the Word of God, the multiplying and spreading of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to everyone who hungers and thirsts? Jesus gave the bread (The Word of God), to the Disciples and it was multiplied and they gave it to those who hungered.
Bread (food) when seen in scripture symbolizes doctrine, words, knowledge of some kind, even in certain cases it was directly referred to as Jesus Christ’s Body. So, when scripture talks about eating things it’s usually meaning that, (not every time food or bread is mentioned it’s meaning that but once we carefully look (and pray) we will realize it’s meaning in each case). In some cases it’s referring to something good (like the Word of God which is Truth & Jesus’ Body). In some cases it is referring to something bad (like lies, false doctrines, like the leaven of the Pharisees) which Jesus warned the disciples about in (Matthew 16:5-12). Here is scripture where it is referred to as the Body of our Lord, Jesus Christ, Matthew 26:26, “While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and gave it to His disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is My body.”
The bread that was blessed, multiplied, and spread among the people, in both the feeding of the 5 and 4 thousand, symbolized the spreading of the Word of God, the spreading of the Gospel of Jesus Christ that one true Doctrine, and symbolized the Body of our Lord.
(A little side-note) In addition, the story about the Gentile woman in Matthew 15:21-28 also is symbolic. It is symbolic of salvation, (the Children’s bread, the Jews Bread), to be later given to the Gentiles, (Yes, Lord even the little Dog’s eat the crumbs which fall from their masters table.) These involved Bread, this bread is symbolic. Brings to my memory the prayer Jesus made in the Garden, saying, “Give us this day our daily Bread.” (Matthew 6:11). Isn’t it wonderful that God has given it to us to know the knowledge of the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven? Matthew 13:11. Praise the Lord God Almighty for this wonderful Bread which He has given us which is His Son Jesus Christ our Blessed Lord and Redeemer. God Bless you all.