Text: Mark 6:30-44
37 But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said to him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give it to them to eat?” 38 And he said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” And when they had found out, they said, “Five, and two fish.” 39 Then he commanded them all to sit down in groups on the green grass.
Missionary statesman Hudson Taylor had complete trust in God's faithfulness. In his journal he wrote:
Our heavenly Father is a very experienced One. He knows very well that His children wake up with a good appetite every morning... He sustained 3 million Israelites in the wilderness for 40 years. We do not expect He will send 3 million missionaries to China; but if He did, He would have ample means to sustain them all... Depend on it; God's work done in God's way will never lack God's supply.
Our Daily Bread, May 16, 1992.
31 And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. Mark 6:31
The news that His disciples brought to Jesus in the verses preceding this text was the news that John the Baptist had been beheaded by Herod. Hard news for anyone to hear especially if the news involves someone we know or are close to as John was to Jesus who had lost their life.
Jesus needed to get away and be away from the people. So He gets into a boat with his disciples and goes across the lake to a place that is quite – to a place that is desolate.
32 And they went away in the boat to a desolate place by themselves. Mark 6:32
When you think of desolate you might think of a place devoid of inhabitants and deserted. A place that is joyless and sorrowful - as if separated from a loved one. A place showing signs of abandonment, dilapidated, devoid of warmth, comfort or hope.
But what does Jesus find?
33 Now many saw them going and recognized them and they ran there on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them. 34 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, Mark 6:33-34a
He went to get away; to be by Himself; to collect His thoughts; to pray and here he finds not a desolate place at all, but one filled with a very large crowd of followers. I believe that even this crowd would have given Jesus a pass had he became agitated and told them to go away. But what does Jesus do?
… and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And he began to teach them many things. Mark 6:34b
Our Lord Christ feeds you life in his name!
We all fail to see and reflect God’s compassion in our daily lives. Many times agitation - seen through the eyes of sin - become the first reaction we have before – by the power of the Holy Spirit – we see through the compassionate eyes of faith given to us by our loving savior Jesus.
Compassion would show for a Christian the wonderful evidence of the fruit of the Spirit. To think of someone else and their needs first and foremost – this is a Christ-like virtue.
Compassion for children draws many to help at Vacation Bible School.
Compassion for those who are sick causes some to visit, send cards, or help with their needs.
Compassion is a response to God’s compassion for us.
Jesus’ showed compassion to the crowd of people gathered at this place and His compassion extended to their physical need as well. These five thousand men, women and children hungered and were fed in a miraculous way by Jesus, but the miracle was probably not even something they were aware of.
God’s great blessing filled their hunger, showed the disciples the compassion and power with which Jesus was sending them out. Each had a basketful of leftovers  to testify to what Jesus has done and will continue to do through them.
God would be with them as they went forth. His miraculous work would be worked through them.
They would speak … but Jesus’ words would be heard.
All that Jesus is and does would be with them as they walked in His place with His word, bringing freedom to those in need of the saving knowledge of Christ in a fallen world. The compassion that Jesus has would be the compassion they share with sinners so that they are healed of their sin, fed by our precious Lord’s word and satisfied of all their wants and needs.
Jesus has compassion. 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Rom 3:23)
Jesus has compassion. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom. 6:23)
Jesus has compassion. 8 God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Rom 5:8)
Jesus has compassion. 9 Because, by the power of the Holy Spirit in you, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. (Rom. 10:9-10)
Jesus has compassion. 13 For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Rom. 10:13)
Jesus has compassion … on you!
Because, He heals your sin and covers you with His righteousness so that you are by faith, free of your bondage to sin, fed by his holy word as well as His very Body and Blood in the Lord’s Supper that is given and shed for you! And all who are satisfied and found in Him … Christ gives you simply out of His compassionate grace, mercy and love for you.
In the name of the Father and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit