Lesson Highlight: "compassion"
"And Jesus, when he came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and he began to teach them many things." (Mark 6:34)
In "Word Focus" William Sillings writes:
It is interesting to note that Jesus was as interested in the physical needs of His followers as He was in their spiritual needs. Not only did He want His disciples to have a time to rest and recuperate, but He also wanted to take care of the multitude’s need for food. And He did. In fact, when they handed out the multiplied thousands of pieces of fish, everybody ate. And the Bible says they were filled (echortasth san, v. 42). This word means not merely that they were full, but that they were satisfied with food. This demonstrates that before you can satisfy people with spiritual food, you sometimes have to satisfy their physical needs. Satisfying physical needs will not always definitely lead to satisfaction spiritually, but it sometimes helps. Later on, after this passage, Jesus chided this same crowd for the fact that they followed Him for the loaves and the fish, but were not truly seeking the spiritual food they so desperately needed. (See John 6:26, 27.)
Source: Miracles of Jesus, Adult Teacher's Insights, page 4.