And Jesus, when He came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd. So He began to teach them many things. Mark 6:34
This passage makes me think of the 23rd Psalm because it says that the Lord Jesus is our Shepherd. However, in today’s passage, Jesus saw the crowd and had compassion because they were like sheep without a shepherd at all. He immediately rose up to take that flock as His own because He saw their need and loved them.
How did He know they had no shepherd? The first thing that was obvious to Him was that they were trying to follow Him even when He had to leave. Have you ever had a pet that tried to follow you ever where you went? Even when you told them to “stay!” they just wanted to be with you. That’s kind of the way it was when Jesus wanted to step away from the people to rest and refresh, they figured out a way to be with Him.
He also saw that they were hungry for His message and miracles because they were not getting them from a shepherd that they didn’t have. Lastly, they were unsettled. These people that were following Jesus were restless and looking for answers. Jesus began to teach them and meet their needs wherever He went.
Today we know we have a Shepherd, and He is the good Shepherd. When we trust in Him and follow His direction, we have no want for any other shepherd. We will not be chasing or seeking someone for the latest “prophecy” or hyped-up message. We will be satisfied to stay close to Him and let His provision of green pastures, still waters and rest restore our soul. We will fear no evil if we have to walk through a valley because our Shepherd is with us. And we know He will always comfort us because He keeps guard and protects with His rod and staff. He even prepares a message of hope and peace for us to encourage and inspire us even in the presence of our enemy and disappointments. He anoints us with oil until our cup runs over. His goodness and mercy chase after us all the days of our lives here in this world and when it is all done, we will live with our good Shepherd and Lord forever and ever. (Psalms 23)
Today’s scripture reading Mark 6:30-44
30 Then the apostles gathered to Jesus and told Him all things, both what they had done and what they had taught.
31 And He said to them, “Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat.
32 So they departed to a deserted place in the boat by themselves.
33 But the multitudes saw them departing, and many knew Him and ran there on foot from all the cities. They arrived before them and came together to Him.
34 And Jesus, when He came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd. So He began to teach them many things.
35 When the day was now far spent, His disciples came to Him and said, “This is a deserted place, and already the hour is late.
36 Send them away, that they may go into the surrounding country and villages and buy themselves bread; for they have nothing to eat.”
37 But He answered and said to them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said to Him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give them something to eat?”
38 But He said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” And when they found out they said, “Five, and two fish.”
39 Then He commanded them to make them all sit down in groups on the green grass.
40 So they sat down in ranks, in hundreds and in fifties.
41 And when He had taken the five loaves and the two fish, He looked up to heaven, blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to His disciples to set before them; and the two fish He divided among them all.
42 So they all ate and were filled.
43 And they took up twelve baskets full of fragments and of the fish.
44 Now those who had eaten the loaves were about five thousand men.