“…take Him by force to make Him king…”– John 6:15
In his gospel, John admits that he did not include as many details as his contemporaries (John 20:30-31). He focused more on selective events such as the feeding of the five thousand. This experience was of such magnitude that all four gospel writers mention it. Not just for the lessons on the surface, but also for deeper meanings through closer examination. You cannot follow the crowds. You must always be obedient to Christ.
The Bible tells us thousands followed Jesus because of the signs He performed. After watching this particular miracle, however, their tone changed. The crowds saw a glimmer of hope to save them from an oppressive government. They were provoked and stirred emotionally. The people became aggressive and were ready to take Jesus by force and make Him king. Certainly a righteous desire of the heart. But an imperfect execution of a wrong plan. The Lord’s intent was not to save the Jews from the Romans. It was to keep all souls from eternal death. Jesus removed Himself from the scene to be alone.
This same crowd wanting to set Jesus up immediately as king quickly turned during difficult times (John 6:66). The Lord tests hearts and examines resolve (John 6:6; John 6:67-69). Erratic crowds sway with the change of the winds of popularity. You may have good intentions and righteous desires. If they are not rooted in the truth of Christ, you will attempt to execute God’s plans poorly. There is a reason He does not always show you end results. It is because God wants your obedience at each step of the journey.
Jesus cannot be taken by force. He must be received by faith. Be careful when you are following the popularity of the crowds. When Jesus perceived that, He removed Himself. Rather than indulging in content that stirs up your emotions, maybe you need time alone with God to awaken your faith. You will never miss anything happening in the world—quite the opposite. The Lord promised that if you seek Him first, everything you need will be added to you.
“I will love You, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised; So shall I be saved from my enemies.”– Psalm 18:1-3