The Halt And The Hungry

Matthew 15:29-39, John 9:35-41

... not of works, lest any man should boast

As we look back over this chapter of Matthew it seems best to be summarised by two words: Conflict and Comfort. The first part is devoted to our Lord's conflict with tradition, apostasy and the human heart; then we see our Lord's comforting dealings with a Gentile woman and now continuing in today's portion where He faces multitudes of the halt or handicapped near the sea of Galilee and the hungry multitudes that had been with Him for three days.

While our Lord is frequently seen dealing with individuals on a one to one basis (how many of these can you recall quickly?) He does not shrink dealing with multitudes. This account of the feeding of the 4,000 has been attacked by unbelieving scholars as being a garbled repetition of the feeding of the 5,000 of which we read in Chapter 14. A careful reading of the two will show the following dissimilarities:-

Why not check this out for yourself and note these specific differences! Only the most hardened critic possessed with the most determined prejudice would seek to merge them. Our Lord's dealings with the halt and the hungry have precious spiritual lessons for us: very simply put, the miraculous healing of the multitudes of the halt reminds us of our Lord's powerful and sovereign saving work. The miraculous feeding of the hungry 4,000 reminds us of our Lord's powerful preserving work. Those whom He saves, He keeps. And He cares for their daily spiritual sustenance and protection.

If you are spiritually halt and maimed by sin, may you be cast down at Jesus' feet and healed by Him. If you are spiritually hungry and thirsty, He is the great Keeper and Provider.

FOR THOUGHT: Consider the matter raised in this meditation.

FOR PRAYER: Pray for the spiritually halt and hungry known to you.