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The Gospel of Mark #17 - Provision and Protection

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The Gospel of Mark #17:

Provision and Protection

Text: Mark 6:30-56

Thesis: To note the provision and protection given by Jesus in order to encourage

  everyone to follow Him.


(1)   After telling the story about John the Baptist’s fate, Mark picks up with the apostles’ returning from their mission.

(2)   The apostles’ had experienced great success and was anxious to tell Jesus all about it and to get some rest.

(3)   However, the crowds had other plans:



I.                   The Story:

A.    The Feeding of the 5000 (vv. 30-44) [note: only miracle recorded in all 4 of the gospel accounts]

1.      When Jesus saw the crowd coming, He and the disciples boarded a boat to get a time of peace and quiet.

a.       However, “Galilee is so small, and the boats used so minute that a crowd by land could often reach their destination more quickly than the sailors” (English 134).

b.      Therefore, the time of peace and quiet lasted only the length of the boat ride.

2.      This time, when Jesus saw the crowd gather, He was moved with compassion for them.

a.       ‘Compassion’ means “to be inwardly moved so as to have to do something about it” (English 134).

b.      “He saw the thousands as shepherd-less sheep, defenseless, lost, unable even to feed themselves” (Hughes 1:149).

3.      Jesus begins to teach the crowd, but daylight is quickly vanishing.

a.       The apostles approach Jesus and inform Him about the time (possibly, it was around 4 and the sun would set around 6) and the food situation.

b.      At first, Jesus tells the apostles to feed the people, but the apostles quickly respond by saying that they do not have that kind of money.

c.       Next, Jesus tells the apostles to conduct a survey to see how much food the people had, but the findings were not encouraging: only 5 loaves and 2 fish.

d.      Then, Jesus informs the crowd to sit down as He gave thanks for the food and performed a miracle to feed everyone.

4.      “His provision was complete, total, and satisfying” (Hughes 1:152).

a.       “The fragments collected into 12 baskets reveal both the great abundance and the magnitude of the miracle; they end with far more than they began” (Garland 254).

b.      The crowd had been spiritually and physically fed.

B.     Walking on Water (vv. 45-52)

1.      Jesus immediately sends His disciples away on a boat as He stays behind to dismiss the crowd.

2.      Before meeting up with the apostles, He goes to pray.

3.      During the 4th watch of the night (i.e., 3-6 A.M.), the disciples find themselves in the middle of a storm.

a.       At this point, Jesus decides to rejoin the apostles.

b.      The term ‘pass them by’ meant that Jesus “wills for them to see his transcendent majesty as a divine being and to give them reassurance” (Garland 263).

c.       “In Habakkuk 3:15, the image of God trampling the sea conveys his power to control the chaos of the seas to save his people Israel (see Ps. 77:19-20; Isa. 51:9-10)” (Garland 262).

d.      However, the disciples fail to recognize Jesus and assume that they are seeing a ghost and thus become terrified.

e.       Eventually, “Jesus assured the disciples with his word and his presence. When he joined them in the boat the wind suddenly died down” (Lane 237).

4.      In verse 52, Mark observed that the apostles had failed to recognize Jesus because they had failed to understand the loaves.

a.       “The miracle of the loaves and fishes had made no lasting impression on them.  After all, if Jesus could multiply food and feed thousands of people, then surely He could protect them in the storm” (Wiersbe 1:133).

b.      “Small of faith is a failure to remember God’s working in the past and to apply that knowledge of His nature to our present problems” (Cole 181).

II.                The Application:

A.    Jesus cares about us and our problems.

B.     Jesus will provide for our physical and spiritual needs.

C.     Jesus can do much with little.

D.    Jesus can still the storms of life.

E.     Jesus’ past care guarantees His present and future care.


(1)   Jesus is the providing and protecting shepherd (cf. Psa. 23).

(2)   Will you come to Him and be completely and totally satisfied?

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