Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Feeding of the Multitudes

Matthew 14:14–21; 15:32–38

Following is a chart comparing and summarizing two similar miracles in the Book of Matthew.

Matthew 14:14-21
Matthew 15:32-38
How many people were present?
What did they need?
What were they able to offer in an effort to meet that need?
5 loaves
2 fish
7 loaves
A few fishes
What words or phrases describe the Savior’s feeling toward the multitudes in their time of need?
He was moved with compassion
He said “I have compassion on
the multitude”
What words or phrases describe what the Savior was able to provide for the multitudes?
And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full.
And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the broken meat that was left seven baskets full.

In each story, the available food was insufficient to feed the multitude, yet with the help of the Lord the insufficiency was overcome. In Romans 3:23 it shows us that we are all imperfect. Because we are sinners it is impossible for us to dwell with God. Without Jesus Christ as our Redeemer and advocate we are lost. According to Ether 12:27, the Lord helps us overcome this insufficiency by first showing us our weaknesses to help us become humble. If we then humble ourselves before him He will help us overcome our weaknesses and even make them strengths unto us! With the atonement we are made whole and we can be admitted into the presence of our Lord. James E. Faust said, “After a lifetime of dealing in the affairs of men and women, I believe it is the ability to overcome personal ego and pride—both are enemies to the full enjoyment of the Spirit of God and walking humbly before him.”  -James E. Faust (April ’94 General Conference).

From my journal this week: I made an interesting connection today. I had baby Jedi last Saturday and the Relief Society in our ward had the compassionate service coordinator call me up to bring me some dinners. As I was reading both of these miracle stories I noticed that Jesus was overcome with compassion both times. I also connected that in both cases the multitudes were in need of food, much as I have been for the last week. Although the dictionary states nothing about food when you look up compassion, I find it interesting that all of the instances where compassion was needed in my life this week involved food. It turns out I have my own tiny multitude!

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