Why would the people want to make Jesus a King? They were Jews and were looking for a leader who would defeat the Romans and liberate them. They were looking for the Messiah. Did they recognize Jesus at the Messiah that day? Maybe, but in my mind, I see other possibilities as well.
What is one of man’s most basic needs and desires? Food, of course. Can you imagine following someone who would make sure you had all the food you wanted every meal? I can just see what is going through the minds of the crowd that witnessed the feeding of the five thousand that day. “If he was our leader, he could feed us every day and we wouldn’t have to work so hard. If he was king, he could feed all the people and we could stop having to submit to those barbaric Roman soldiers.”
In looking for the Messiah, they would also be looking for someone with power. What incredible power it must have taken to make food out of nothing. They might have been saying, “If he has the power to make food out of nothing, what other power might he have? He just might have enough power to rid us of these Roman invaders.”
Even if they thought He was the Messiah, their expectations were all wrong. The Kingdom Christ was here to establish was not an earthly one; it was a spiritual one. It was not a Kingdom where He would sit on a throne in Jerusalem and mete out justice and judgment. Honestly, that would be too restrictive for the One who would establish a worldwide kingdom.
You know what I see as the common theme in each of these speculations and expectations? It is, what is in it for me. These people were looking to Jesus to provide for them, and He was more than capable of doing that if that is all He was sent to earth to accomplish. But Jesus was not sent here just to provide for the physical needs of mankind; He was sent to provide for our spiritual needs. What is man’s greatest spiritual need? It is a relationship with a Heavenly Father.
I love the picture of God in heaven looking down on me as a loving and benevolent father. It makes me want to know more about Him. And it makes me want to please Him more. When these people looked at Jesus, do you think that is what they saw? When you consider Jesus, is it what you see? Is it what you want?
Jesus is the path God provided for us to have a relationship with Him. Had Jesus allowed Himself to become king, do you think He would have been able to become the way, the truth, and the life?
But He does want to be king; only it is not an earthly king on a throne. He wants to be the king of your heart and life. Are you ready to make Him that?