"This is a desert place"

In the fourteenth chapter of Matthew we read that a multitude of people had followed Jesus into the desert. They had listened to his teachings, and the sick had been healed; but as the day was drawing to a close, the disciples—zealous for the welfare of the people—admonished Jesus to send the multitude away into the villages, where they could purchase food. Beholding the situation from their point of view, the disciples saw a great stretch of arid and parched land, and nothing with which to refresh and sustain the hungry multitude. "This is a desert place, and the time is now past," they said.

Surely the evidence seemed convincing! Not so, however, to the Christ-consciousness. Jesus, who knew so well the needs of all mankind, replied, "They need not depart." Where mortal belief claimed that limitation and lack existed, just there the spiritualized consciousness of Christ Jesus beheld the presence of God, infinite good, divine substance, eternal Love. Certainly there was no need to depart from such a presence. The question as to which viewpoint was correct, that of Jesus or of the disciples, was definitely answered by the events that followed. We read that five thousand people were fed, and yet there remained twelve full baskets of food!

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