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Nothing is impossible, the word itself shows that I am possible, said Audrey Hepburn. Of course, this is also a quotation from the Bible, where nothing is impossible for God which were written about 3 times. Mark 9:23, 14:36, Luke 1:37. But the thing that interests me is the comment from the Instagram user, @zsofi_bella, who said that the impossibility is not a fact (or a reality) but merely an opinion.
Yes many times when we meet a dead end of a situation, very often we immediately decide what we face has no way out. Whereas if we wanted to explore deeper, we will find it is merely our opinion alone. And even if that was what everybody is facing currently: such as the example of the Israelites being squeezed between the Pharaoh and the Red Sea in Genesis 14, there was still God who helped them. So everything is possible! There is no such thing as a dead end. When Joseph was thrown into the well by his brothers, (Genesis 37:24) he seemed to have no way out. In the dry well, he could only look up for the mercy of his brothers who had thrown him down. But if he would see a little further up, there was God who had arranged all his life paths. And the impasse at the beginning of his life story was only the start of Joseph’s extraordinary story of how he and the Lord broke through the immense impossibility that changed the destiny of Israel forever.
There is absolutely nothing impossible for God, Luke 1:37. But many of us stop there, we hardly believe that this is for those who believe in Him as well, Mark 9:23. Believing that God able is easier than believing that He is willing to help us. It honestly shows the real cliche reason we got to never believe in the promise of the Word of God to us. Yet Jesus also said that those who believe in Him will do the same things as He does even greater! John 14:12.
In Mark 8:21 Jesus asked his disciples: don’t you still understand? Or, isn’t it clear to you? Don’t you get it yet? A question that many times need to be admitted that if His disciples were present before He could not understand what He meant immediately, how are we going to understand it now who live 2,000 years later? At the beginning of this passage, Jesus warned his disciples of the danger of the Herod and Pharisees attitude, verse 15. The disciples then thought what He meant was that they had forgotten to bring bread with them on that journey. Perhaps because the word God used is more to indicate the condition inside, not the outward nature. In the translation of the Passion Bible, it says to be on your guard against the yeast inside of the Pharisees and the yeast inside of Herod! So the disciples then thought that this is because they forgot to carry inside their stock. Verse 14 shows there was one bread with them, but verse 16 says that there was no bread with them. Yet God never questioned the physical things, He never worries about if they would carry the physical food or not. He always speaks of spiritual food: doing the will of my Father will fill Him up already. John 4:34.
So God began to rebuke them aloud, why do you talk about no bread? Don’t you understand? Are your hearts harden? You have eyes, but why don’t you see and you have ears, but why don’t you hear? Verses 17-18. Yes, many times the eyes and ears we have cannot see nor hear what we supposedly saw and heard. We always see what we want to see and hear only. We always approach God in our understanding only. Yet the riches and blessings God provided far beyond all we need. Like the disciples, many of us do not see that forgiveness of sins, the redemption of our souls on the cross as the real blessing, a blessing that is far greater than the wealth or abundant fortune. We never realized that the salvation of our souls from the wrath of God against sin is more urgent need to be met far beyond the money we need every day. We always just measure Him according to our stomach needs!
That is why the theology of prosperity is far more popular than the news of God’s Cross! Have we ever come to pray again to Him when everything was good and full of blessings? Notice how would we pray when we have nothing and when we have everything? Our Lord is only as big as the empty space in our tummy! Perhaps that’s why we all should learn to fast more than to go to eat more at the restaurant.
Then the Lord continued by reminding them of the two miraculous events in which He was able to feed a few thousand people twice with many remaining baskets that later appeared. Verse 19, 5,000 people ate with 12 baskets leftover derived from 5 loaves and 2 fish. Matthew 14: 13-21; Mark 6: 31-44; Luke 9: 12-17; John 6: 1-14. Verse 20, 4,000 people ate with 7 baskets remaining coming from 7 loaves of bread. Matthew 15: 32-39; Mark 8: 1-9.
What God means is as simple as this: if we look at the initial amount of bread compared to the final amount of food, we will find that the fewer sources of bread in the first place would cause more people able to be fed at the end. Even the number of baskets that contained any leftover bread would increase more to the end. 7 loaves at the beginning could feed 4,000 people. Take 2 out of the 7 loaves, the remaining will be 5 loaves. But then the number of people being fed would be increased by 1,000 to 5,000 from 4,000 people. The remaining of the bread was increased 5 baskets into 12 baskets of leftover. The power of God would not be reduced only when the initial capital was getting less. The comparison is showing the opposite: the power of God becomes greater along with the loss of bread at the beginning of miracles. Because what He needs is not what we have in this life, but on how much our willingness to do God’s will. In every miracle, there were always people who would give up everything they had to God. John 6:9 refers to a little boy with five loaves and two fish. A lunch which was a little too much for a small child. But then he did not hold back any single bread to what he had given to the Lord. Likewise in the story of 4,000 people. God took the seven loaves of all, for that was all they had. If the bread they had on the boat was given to God in Mark 8:14, imagine how much more bread that would be multiplied from God’s hands after He had given thanks for it. Because if 7 loaves could feed 4,000 people and 5 bread (2 less from 7) 5,000 people would eat (that was another 1,000 from 4), then how many would eat from one bread only? Isn’t the less bread He would have, the more people would eat? Try to count how many people were in the boat at that time.
That was the reason the Lord asked in verse 21 Mark 8, with everything you had experienced, you would still not understand? Matthew 8:26. Why are you afraid, you who have a lack of faith? Or you who have little faith. John 14:1. Do not be afraid, do not let your heart be troubled! Do not worry, do not give in to your fears! But who among us would willingly to let go the one bread you would have?
Fortunately, He came down to earth to be a human courageously, born as a baby in a room that was mixed animals in the small village of Bethlehem. He dares to walk the path of life that was full of risk of destruction and death. Born to a family whose man could not afford a better place to comfort his wife and future child to be born. He even brave enough to be born in the age of the furious ruler who was very cruel issuing a decision to kill infants under 2 years old just to prevent this coming King. Jesus dared to abandon all the comfort and security He had in Heaven and came as a helpless infant to a family which didn’t have a good financial situation and born amidst the age of ruthless politics of a colonialist. He must be rushed to Egypt as a refugee because of it. For many years he lived in Egypt before his parents took him back to Nazareth. The great thing was that in the omniscience of our Lord, He didn’t back down from this way of life He chose. If anyone could choose a way of life, then Jesus was that person. But what had happened show to us that He was willing and consciously chose the Way of the Cross from the beginning.
Just imagine if He said like most of us: I do not want to. Too difficult, it’s too hard. The path does not bring me any profit. What would it be for all of us if Jesus did not want to be the Lamb of God who had been slain since the foundation of the world? Once again, the question is who among us who willingly to imitate our Lord? Often we do not have much left over, just one loaf, but do we dare giving up the remaining one?
John 10:10 says, thieves, come only to steal and kill and destroy; I am coming, that they might have life, and have it in abundance. Yes, He left everything for us, dare we also leave everything to follow Him? Or do we agree with this verse just because of the promise of life and abundance He gave us? Maybe that’s why we’re more like the thief who came just to take, take and take. Not many would grow to be like God. I wrote all these thoughts out of my hope that the readers would choose to be similar to Him, not him! What is impossible is not a miracle of healing or a financial breakthrough but a willingness of the heart to let go, that is what God wants among us all.
For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. 2 Chronicles 16:9.
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