“It is because we have taken no bread.”
To read today’s portion of scripture, you can purchase The One Year Bible or find the following in your Bible:
“Now when His disciples had come to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread. Then Jesus said to them, ‘Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.’ And they reasoned among themselves, saying, “It is because we have taken no bread.'”(Matthew 16:5-7).
The disciples are an endless source of delight to me. I say that because they are Just. Like. Us.
They forgot to take bread. That makes me feel better about forgetting my phone a few days ago, and being without it all day long on a day when I really needed it. It makes me feel better about the time I left my purse on the bench in the hall on the morning I was heading to the airport to board a plane, and we had to turn around and rush back to retrieve it. And then there are my forgotten keys, and forgotten birthdays, and forgotten appointments. Thank you, forgetful disciples, for reminding me that God can use even forgetful me.
They assumed Jesus was chastising them for their forgetfulness, but He wasn’t. What He was doing was warning them not to let themselves be corrupted by false teaching. It’s a battle the church fights to this very day.
And that’s a topic for another post. Today I can’t move from the thought that these men, who had just watched Jesus twice take a few handfuls of bread and fish and multiply it to feed 5000 one time and 4000 another, seemed to forget that He could do the same for them if He chose. Can we irritate the Bread-Multiplier Himself by forgetting to bring our own? I don’t think so.
John Trapp, a theologian who lived in the early to mid-1600s, said this about our memories:
“Our memories are naturally like hour-glasses, no sooner filled with good instructions and experiments than running out again. It must be our prayer to God that He would put His finger upon the hole, and so make our memories like the pot of manna, preserving holy truths in the ark of the soul.”