Questions Jesus Asked #24

Matthew 16:5-12 – When they went across the lake, the disciples forgot to take bread. 6 “Be careful,” Jesus said to them. “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

            7 They discussed this among themselves and said, “It is because we didn’t bring any bread.”

8 Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, “You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? 9 Do you still not understand? Don’t you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 11 How is it you don’t understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”  12 Then they understood that he was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.  NIV

This is an interesting interchange between Jesus and His first followers.  Jesus is talking about spiritual things, and they are thinking about their stomachs. They had forgotten to pack a lunch for the boat trip, and when Jesus began talking about yeast, the first thing they thought about was real bread.

It seems that Jesus was more than a little annoyed at their lack of spiritual development and/or discernment. He reminded them of the two miraculous feedings of thousands that began with little and ended with food to spare. It wasn’t that Jesus wasn’t concerned about their physical welfare; but He was more concerned about their spiritual welfare and whose teaching they and others were following.  He wanted to remind them that just a little bad thinking can affect a large group of people.

Some things to think about:  When I pray, am I more concerned about my physical or spiritual well-being?  What about my prayers for others? Do I pray as much for their spiritual needs as I do their spiritual needs?  How do I keep track of how God blesses me and answers my prayers, so that I can thank Him and remember His mighty deeds and faithfulness?

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