Sunday, August 02, 2020

How To Handle a Mob

In this Sunday's reading from Matthew 14:13-21, Jesus demonstrates how to keep a crowd from turning into a mob by feeding them,
"Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick. When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, ‘This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.’ Jesus said to them, ‘They need not go away; you give them something to eat.’ They replied, ‘We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.’ And he said, ‘Bring them here to me.’ Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children."
The feeding of the five thousand is related in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, a fact which tells us that this event was of deep significance to the people of Jesus' time.

If Jesus had been a rabble-rouser, this would have been a perfect time to turn a crowd into a mob. John had just been beheaded, the crowd followed Jesus away from Herod, they were hungry, and we know that hungry people tend to get irritable.

But what did Jesus do? He fed them.


Maybe we need to send in the food truck army to handle the rioters in our major cities, but only after they have heard the Gospel would we feed them food!

1 comment:

  1. Katherine11:41 AM

    It's a thought. You'd be accused of "bigotry," though, for insisting on tying food to the hearing of the message. I suppose the Gospel message could be broadcast to the food line, and repeated in person by people handing out the sandwiches.