Pastor spoke about crowds that followed Jesus today. He reminded us that it was hot, (they didn’t use deodorant), and many were sick. (They would smell like a hospital without disinfectant.)
Those crowds numbered in the tens of thousands. Matthew 14:21 says there were 5000 men; they didn’t count the women or children. The men would have wives, children, possibly their mother and their mother-in-law. Peter’s mother-in-law lived with him, (Mark 1:30), and in many places it was recorded that Mary, Jesus’ mother, was with him.
Jesus spoke to a football arena sized crowd. That makes today’s verse even more amazing.
Matthew 14:22, “Immediately after this, Jesus insisted that his disciples get back into the boat and cross to the other side of the lake, while he sent the people home.” NLT
When I first read this verse, I had a mental picture of a pastor shaking hands with members of his congregation as they left the church.
It wasn’t like that.
Imagine Elvis finishing a concert and sending all of his ‘”people” to the buses: no body guards, security personnel, manager, assistants, band members. Then he goes out into the crowd and talks to each person individually before they go home.
It would never happen.
It would be dangerous for one man to try to talk to that many people. Cell phones would be flashing, (everyone would want a selfie), and microphones would be shoved in his face. There would be pushing and shoving to get close to him.
Take that scenario times 10.
Each person would want to talk to Jesus. They would seek healing. He didn’t turn kids away and he held babies. I doubt he sent any of them home without a hug, a touch, a kind word, or shaking their hand.
Jesus went through the crowd, not to garner votes, but to give each person a piece of himself.
You were rarely alone. You had to get up early or stay up all night just to have time to pray. Forgive me for losing patience when I cannot find time alone.
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