We have been reading the feeding of the 5000. While it was a powerful demonstration, in the end it backfired badly. In John 6, the crowd tried to make Jesus king but Jesus explained that he, himself, was the true bread of life.
[M]any of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?”…From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.”
Jesus’ mass movement in Galilee collapsed. It was tragic—but not as tragic as it would have been had he given in to the temptation to compromise his mission with signs, free bread, or a popular coronation. It is interesting that John does not mention Jesus being tempted by Satan in the wilderness, but his story of Jesus’ temptations arising from the feeding of the 5000 is remarkably parallel. All three temptations are there, and Jesus…
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