As we are being challenged to read and study the book of John, I wanted to share some of my personal sermon notes with you to help you understand the book. I preached through the entire book over the course of 1 year when I pastored First Baptist Church Del Rio. Enjoy!
Introduction—Hunger: These staggering facts about global hunger speak for themselves. This information comes from the organization World Vision from 2012 stats.
Hunger is the world’s number 1 health risk; it kills more people every year than
- AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.
- Some 925 million people are malnourished in the world today.
- 1 in 7 people in the world will go to bed hungry tonight.
- Children whose development is stunted by hunger and malnutrition lose 5-10 percent in lifetime earnings.
- If we spent U.S. $11.8 billion a year, we could reach 90 percent of stunted children in the 36 highest-burden countries. This would cost less than the $13.6 billion U.S. consumers spend per year on potato and tortilla chips.
- Worldwide, 115 million children under the age of 5 are underweight.
- Asia and the Pacific region are home to over half the world’s population — and nearly two-thirds of the world’s hungry people.
- Supplementation with vitamins can reduce risk of child mortality from all causes by 23 percent.
- Iron deficiency is the most prevalent form of malnutrition worldwide, affecting an estimated 2 billion people. Eradicating iron deficiency can improve national productivity levels by as much as 20 percent.
So thousands of people die every day from hunger, but more than that, thousands die each day without Christ. You see we can be concerned all we want, concern doesn’t get the Gospel out. It is action and going and giving that gets the Gospel out. The Gospel can be in the form of food. When we feed one of these, we do it in the name of Christ. When we give to a cause that connects us to Christ, we believe that Jesus is there. When we send someone out like Grayson Drake to do the work of the Gospel, we trust God with him so that God can use Grayson to glorify His Name.
Do you hunger and thirst after the things of God? Jesus said in Matthew 5:6, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they will be filled.”
Read: John 6:1-15
Some time after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias), 2 and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the signs he had performed by healing the sick. 3 Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with his disciples. 4 The Jewish Passover Festival was near. 5 When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” 6 He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do. 7 Philip answered him, “It would take more than half a year’s wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!” 8 Another of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up, 9 “Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?” 10 Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” There was plenty of grass in that place, and they sat down (about five thousand men were there). 11 Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish. 12 When they had all had enough to eat, he said to his disciples, “Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.” 13 So they gathered them and filled twelve baskets with the pieces of the five barley loaves left over by those who had eaten. 14 After the people saw the sign Jesus performed, they began to say, “Surely this is the Prophet who is to come into the world.” 15 Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself.
This miracle of Jesus is the one miracle other that the resurrection that is found in all 4 gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and of course here in John.
- Are you hungry to see Jesus multiply your offerings?
- When you give to God’s mission and to the cause of Christ, miracles happen.
- People are changed as a result of your influence. Your influence can be one of tremendous value.
- Your giving can mean the difference in someone’s life.
- As we look at this miracle of Jesus, we see the disciples once again concerned about the cost of doing ministry.
- Jesus asks Phillip where can he buy bread for this large gathering? The gathering was between 10,000-20,000, including women and children.
- Jesus knew there was no human way that this was possible. But Jesus’s ways are never motivated by human efforts. He wants to include us in the work of the ministry, but not with human mindset.
- His ministry is always Kingdom motivated. Always.
- If it is not, it isn’t the work of God. It is our work.
- If we are going to be the church the God has called us to be, we have to be Kingdom minded in all that we do.
- We cannot look at situations and opportunities as impossible, but with our mind focused on the things above, we can see them as possible with the leadership of Jesus.
- Miraculous multiplication of our offerings can only be done with the hand of God in the power of the Holy Spirit.
- Phillip calculated the cost of this massive effort to be a lot of money. He said it would take more than ½ year’s worth of wages to give just one bite to each person in this crowd.
- Phillip knew the enormity of the task at hand, yet he used human calculations to bring back to Jesus.
- I would have said, Jesus I will wait on your cue to see this through, because I can’t. I can’t. I know you can.
- Then Mr. Andrew comes up with a plan: Here is a boy with 2 fish and 5 bread loaves. I got it. We can use that.
- Now we might be getting somewhere.
- But as soon as he the plan is place, it evaporates because Andrew decides that this plan really isn’t the answer either. Look what he says in verse 9, here is the plan, but never mind.
- Andrew was thinking with his humanness, which can only get us to a certain point. I am not downplaying the human mind that God has given us, but until we realize that certain tasks can only be accomplished through the miraculous power of Jesus Christ, we will always come up short of the standards God has set.
Illustration—What is an offering? What could you offer God that He can use?
- Your Finances – tithe, above and beyond
- Your Gifts and Talents – God has gifted you in an area
- Your Leadership – Serve
- Your Time – God wants your precious time, not your spare time
- Your Commitment – how committed are you to the Kingdom call?
- Your Prayers – We are to pray, pray, pray, pray, and then some more.
- Your Creativity – We are created as creative people
- Your Sacrifice of Praise – Romans 12:1-2, Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
- Your Life – You are to give God your whole life
Application—Do you want God to multiply your offering? Are you like Phillip, and think in human terms about what God can’t do with your offering?
- Are you hungry to see Jesus meeting the needs of our community?
- El Paso is a unique place I have found out.
- There are a lot of needs here.
- The amazing thing is this: it is not cheap to live here. Housing and utilities among other things are very expensive here.
- So as we look to our text, lets see how we can apply that to our situation here in El Paso.
- Jesus must be the one doing the work through us. He always involves His people for the work of the ministry.
- Access the situation, like Jesus did. He had everyone sit down. That’s when He could see the need.
- In all things always offer up in prayer the huge need or the Big Giant Task that you know you can’t do to God. Jesus knew He needed miraculous prayer power to tackle this monster of a situation.
- Next, we must be generous in your offering. If you believe Jesus can do all things, then your offering must be one that is sacrificial. It must be felt. You will need to give up something in order to be generous.
- It easy to give out of what you have, what I mean by that is you give because you can.
- But it is very difficult to give when you know it is going to sting. Like you might not get to go out to lunch this month, or the trip to San Antonio will be postponed, or you will have a few more meals with beans and tortillas, instead of New York strip and baked potato.
- Jesus was so generous in His giving that he allowed the people to take all that they wanted it says in verse 11.
- Also, we must be stop being wasteful. If Jesus made it a point not to waste anything, then we should examine our wastefulness so that just maybe we can give more away.
- You can’t take all your possessions with you when you leave planet earth. They won’t be any of any use where we are headed.
- So as a believer in the lord Jesus Christ, it is your Godly responsibility to be a generous giver, a prayerful giver, an intelligent giver, and to use all available resources without being wasteful.
Illustration—You can get involved by giving of your offerings to an organization that is making a difference in El Paso. They need finances, donations of clothing and other household items, your service (clothing separation, cleaning, etc), and your prayers.
Application—Are you hungry to see Jesus change this community? Are you ready to have a Kingdom mindset?
- Are you hungry to see Jesus magnified?
- When we trust God to something only He can do, He receives the Glory and His name will be magnified!
- The word magnified means to make something greater or to intensify. We do plenty of magnification to our self don’t we? It is time to make Jesus known instead of you.
- When you allow Jesus to work His miracles in your life, there is no limit to His great power. There is nothing that He can’t do. There are no impossibilities.
- Jesus can take your 2 fish and 5 loaf offering and multiply it so that His name can be recognized around the world.
- He can take your generous offering and send Grayson to Spain in order to make His name known.
- Magnify His name today.
Illustration—When you are hungry, you don’t want a salad, or an apple, or popcorn to satisfy your hunger. You want some comfort food, like country fried steak, or fajitas, or mashed potatoes and gravy. You want to have your hunger satisfied.
When you hunger and thirst after Jesus, no other supplement will do. You don’t want some wishy washy, watered down presentation of Gospel. You want Jesus and all that He has to offer. He is the only one that can satisfy your hunger. He is the only one who can fill your soul. He is the only one that can feed you what you need.
Application—Are you hungry today? Are you hungry for Jesus? Are you hungry enough to allow Him to be magnified?
Conclusion—Today, as you hear His word, allow Jesus to multiply your offering, allow Jesus to meet the needs of our community, and allow Him to be the one that is magnified. Are you Hungry?
Stay in the Light, 1 John 1:7,