Life's Greatest Decision

The Gospel of Mark

Chapter 8

Jesus Feeds 4,000 People

Another large crowd came during that time, and they did not have anything to eat. So, Jesus called His followers to Him and said, "I have love and mercy for the crowd of people because they have been with me for three days now, and they do not have anything to eat. They will become weak on the way home, if I send them away to their homes when they are hungry, and some of them came from far away."

His followers answered Him, "Where can anyone find enough bread here to satisfy these people? This place is very far from the towns."

Jesus asked them, "How many small loaves of bread do you have?"

They said, "Seven."

Jesus told the crowd of people to sit on the ground, and He took the seven loaves of bread and broke them into pieces, after He thanked God for them. Then He gave the pieces of bread to His followers so they could give them to the people, and the followers gave them to the people in the crowd. They also had a few small fish, and after He blessed them He told His followers to give them also to the people. The people ate and had enough, and Jesus' followers filled seven baskets with the broken pieces that remained. There were about four thousand men there. He went immediately into the boat with His followers, after He sent the people away, and He went to the places in the area of Dalmanutha.

The Pharisees came to Jesus, and began to question Him. They asked Him for a sign from heaven, because they wanted to test Him. He sighed deeply in His spirit and said, "Why does this generation ask for a sign? I tell you the truth, there will not be any sign given to you." Then He went away from them again and went to the other side of the lake.

Jesus' followers forgot to take bread, and they had only one small loaf of bread in the boat with them. Jesus ordered them, "Be careful of the yeast of the Pharisees, and the yeast of Herod."

Then they began to talk with each other about not having any bread.

Jesus knew about it and said to them, "Why are you talking about not having any bread? Do you still not see or understand? Do you have a hard heart that does not want to understand? Do you have eyes but you don't see and ears but you don't hear? Don't you remember? How many baskets did you fill with broken pieces, when I broke the five small loaves for the five thousand people?"

They said to Him, "Twelve." "How many large baskets did you fill with broken pieces when I broke the seven small loaves for the four thousand people?"

They answered, "Seven."

He said to them, "Do you still not understand?"

Jesus Heals a Blind Man at Bethsaida

They came to Bethsaida , and some people brought a blind man to Jesus, and begged Him to touch the man. He took the blind man by the hand, and led him outside the town. Jesus spit on the man's eyes and put His hands on him. Then He asked him, "Do you see anything?"

The man looked up and said, "I see people, but they look like trees walking."

Jesus put His hands on his eyes again. Then the man looked at things very carefully and he was healed completely, and he began to see everything clearly. Jesus sent him home and said, "Do not go into the town."

Peter Confesses that Jesus is the Christ

Jesus and His followers went into the towns in the area of Caesarea Philippi. He asked His followers as they went, "Who do people say I am?"

They told Him, "Some people say You are John the Baptizer, and other people say You are Elijah, but other people say You are one of the other prophets."

He asked them, "But Who do you say I am?"

Peter answered Him, "You are the Christ."

Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about Him.

Jesus Tells His Followers He Must be Killed

Jesus began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and that the religious leaders, the chief priests, and the teachers of the law would reject Him. He taught them that He must be killed, and then be brought back to life from death three days later. Jesus spoke about this very clearly, and Peter took Him away from the other followers and began to rebuke Him.

But Jesus turned and looked at His followers and rebuked Peter and said, "Satan, go away from Me, because you do not think the thoughts of God in your mind. You think the thoughts of men!"

Jesus called the crowd of people and His followers to Him and said, "A person must give up his own desires and take up his cross and obey Me, if he wants to be one of My followers."

What is Required to be Jesus' Follower

"This is because a person will lose his true life if he wants to save it, but a person will save his true life, if he loses it for Me and for the good news. What does a person gain if he gains all the world but must give up his soul for it? What can a person trade for his soul? If anyone feels shame because of Me and My words in this rebellious and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also feel shame because of him when He comes in His Father's glory with the holy angels."

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