The Gospel of John is considered by historians to be the last of the canonical gospels to be written. Because of this and how is differs from the other three gospels many of them dismiss the book entirely. I am often amazed why they dismiss it. Have you ever noticed how these same “historians” will quote Josephus one minute and the next they will say how he is wrong about this and that. Some historians are of course better than others, but what most of them lack is one of the best tools God has given us to identify His fingerprint and it is that fingerprint we are going to look at today so let’s get started.
John 6:1 After these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is the sea of Tiberias.
Galilee again means circuit.
John 6:2 And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased.
Note why they are following him.
John 6:3 And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples.
Mountain’s always symbolize a nation or place of power.
John 6:4 And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh.
Notice how John explains what Passover is? There are some so called scholars that claim the gospels were written in Aramaic and later translated into Greek. It is true that Aramaic was the language of the Jews at that time and was the language that Christ himself spoke, but there wasn’t a single Jew living at the time that didn’t know what Passover was. If his audience was the Aramaic speaking Jews, then he wouldn’t have had to tell us what Passover is. It would be like having to explain Christmas.
John 6:5 When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? (6:6) And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do.
Obviously, this is a rhetorical question, but there is more to it than you would at first think. This is the first part of that fingerprint I told you about. Bread is symbolic of the manna from heaven, the Word of God, the body of Christ. So ask yourself, “Do you buy the word of God?”
John 6:7 Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.
Remember Christ asked this question to prove Philip, but it’s also to prove you and to prove to us that His finger is upon this scripture. So let’s prove ourselves and take a look at this two hundred number.
In Joshua, right after the battle of Jericho, God told Israel not to take anything from the city (Joshua 6:18-19) but not everyone listened.
Joshua 7:20-21 And Achan answered Joshua, and said, Indeed I have sinned against the LORD God of Israel, and thus and thus have I done: (21) When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonish garment, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, then I coveted them, and took them; and, behold, they are hid in the earth in the midst of my tent, and the silver under it.
We have our two hundred number here along with the number fifty and a Babylonish garment. This garment was one of their priests garments. So what does that tell us about what he really took? What does God really want us to glean from this? That Achan was putting on the clothes (or wanting to) of a false religion (idolatry) and the numbers here drill the point home. Fifty is the number for the Holy Spirit, but in this case it is the number for the false spirit or you could go so far as to say Antichrist. Two hundred shows us the same thing that it does in John, namely that it is not sufficent. The garmets and spirit and bread or a false religion, if you will, are not sufficient to save you.
We see this same idea again with Absalom (David’s son that tried to take the throne). 2 Samuel 14:26 tells us how his hair was beautiful and weighed two hundred shekels and later in 2 Samuel 18 it is this same hair that got caught in a tree, ultimately causing his death. This is another example pointing us to this number two hundred not only being insufficient to save you, but also it is a hindrance to God.
I’ll give you one more example before we move on. Prior to David slaying Goliath, Saul said that anyone who slayed the giant may have his daughter’s hand in marriage. After David did, Saul said he wanted to have the foreskins of one hundred Philistines before he would give her to David. David went out to do just that, but he didn’t stop at one hundred. He gathered two hundred, but guess what? He got the daughter…but despite saving Israel from Goliath and despite gathering the two hundred foreskins it wasn’t sufficient to win over Saul.
It is easy for scholars to know what the number seven means, but two hundred? Scholars don’t look at those numbers the way we do and back before we had computers and databases to pull up and cross reference scriptures I daresay few, if any, in the ancient world knew the meaning of the word or even thought about it. God did and He put this number in here for us to know that despite what the world says about the scriptures we can have faith in Him and his word.
John 6:8 One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, saith unto him, (6:9) There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?
Don’t over look who has the bread here. It was the lad. Remember Christ said? Matthew 18:3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again Matthew 19:14 But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.
See all the money in the world isn’t going to be enough if you look to the world for your bread, (read Matthew 25 and compare the foolish virgins that went to buy their oil) but if you go to Christ for your bread it will always be enough.
Now let’s look at the numbers here, as they are so important to understand the deeper meanings of the scriptures. Adding the number five and the number two (from verse 6:9) together give you seven which is the number for spiritual completion, but also we are given the element involved in that completion. Five means grace and two can means either division or union. What does this tell us? First, that without Christ’s sacrifice you cannot receive grace. But that is only a small faction of what he is showing us here. It’s also showing us a symbol of the bread and meat. Similar to the way God feed the tribes of Israel in the desert after they left Egypt. God feed them with manna and quail. Also, do you remember in verse four it said this is Passover? Do you remember what they were to do on Passover? They ate of the unleavened bread (barley loaves) and ate of the sacrificial lamb (fishes). Remember: 1 Corinthians 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:
Christ is our Passover and we are to pray for our DAILY bread. This can be a study in and of itself so for the sake of brevity I will just give you this to chew on: Exodus 16:12 I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel: speak unto them, saying, At even ye shall eat flesh, and in the morning ye shall be filled with bread; and ye shall know that I am the LORD your God.
John 6:10 And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand.
Numbers, numbers everywhere today. Five thousand again drives home the point that Christ has been trying to show us right from the beginning. One thousand is divine completeness and five again is grace, so we see ultimately for the masses, that are only interested in Christ’s miracles, this is pointing to the day of the Lord or the millennium.
John 6:11 And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.
Notice how it is the disciples that distributed the food and not Christ, this is true today, but again should remind you of the millennium. If it doesn’t then keep in His Word.
John 6:12 When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.
In the other gospels it tells us why they were to gather up these fragments. It symbolizes the extra crap that gets spread around by would be teachers and gossip hounds. In the desert, when Israel was fed with manna and the quail, they also did not keep leftovers but looked to God to provide their daily Bread.
John 6:13 Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.
Twelve, points to governmental order and the twelve tribes. In the millennium the elect will do their job and keep the crap at bay.
I pray I didn’t overload your boat today and if I did just remember that everyone gathers the manna from heaven according to their eating. God Bless