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The Life of CHRIST

The Gospel of Mark

Chapter 6

Jesus Goes to His Home Town

Jesus went from there to the town where His family lived and His followers went with Him. He began to teach in the synagogue when the Sabbath Day came. Many people who heard Him were full of wonder and they said, "Where did this man get these things? What is this wisdom given to Him and how does He do these miracles? Isn't this the woodworker, Mary's son and the brother of James, Joses, Judas and Simon? Aren't His sisters here with us?" They did not accept Him.

Jesus said to them, "A prophet has honor everywhere except in his home town, and among his own family members, and in his own house."

Jesus could not do any miracles there except put His hands on a few sick people and heal them. He was very surprised because they did not believe. Then He went through the towns and taught the people.

Jesus Sends Out the Twelve

He called the Twelve to Him and began to send them out in groups of two. He gave them authority over evil spirits, and He ordered them to take nothing for their trip, except a stick to help them walk. He told them not to take any bread, or bag, or money in their belt. He told them to wear shoes, but not two coats.

He said to them, "Stay in the first house you go into, and remain there until you leave that town. If the people there do not welcome you or if they do not listen to you, shake off the dust under your feet as you leave. This will be a witness against them."

So they went out and preached to people to turn away from their sins. They forced out many evil spirits and anointed many sick people with oil and healed them.

Herod Thinks Jesus is John the Baptizer

King Herod heard about these things because Jesus' name had become known to many people, and they said, "John the Baptizer has been brought back to life from death. That is why these powerful things work in Him." But other people said, "He is Elijah," and other people said, "He is a prophet like one of the prophets who lived a long time ago."

But when Herod heard about this, he said, "I cut off John's head, but now, he has come back to life from death."

Herod had sent for John and they took him, and put him in prison and put chains on him. Herod did this because of Herodias, the wife of his brother, Philip. Herod had married her and John had said to Herod, "It is against the law for you to have your brother's wife."

Herodias hated John and wanted to kill him. But she could not do this, because Herod feared John. Herod knew John was a righteous and holy man, so he did not let anyone harm him. Herod did not understand the things John said when he heard him speak, but he liked to listen to him.

Then the right time came. Herod made a feast on his birthday for his chief leaders and military captains and Galilee's important men. Herodias' daughter came in and danced, and she pleased Herod and the people who sat and ate with him. So the king said to the young girl, "Ask me for anything you want, and I will give it to you." He promised her very strongly, "I will give you anything you ask me to give you, even half of my kingdom."

She went out and said to her mother, "What should I ask for?" Her mother said, "John the Baptizer's head." So she came in immediately and went quickly to the king and said, "I want you to give me John the Baptizer's head on a plate."

The king was very sorry, but he did not want to refuse to give her what she asked for because of his serious promises and because of his guests. The king sent out a soldier from his guard immediately, and ordered him to bring John's head. The soldier went and cut off John's head in the prison. He brought John's head on a plate and gave it to the girl. Then the girl gave it to her mother. John's followers came and took his body and put it in a grave, when they heard about it.

Jesus Feeds 5,000 People

The apostles came together to Jesus, and told Him about everything they had done and taught.

He said to them, "Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and rest for awhile." Jesus said this because many people were coming and going and they did not even have time to eat. So they went away by themselves in a boat to a place to be alone. The people saw them go and many people knew them, so they ran there together from all the cities and came there before Jesus and His followers did. Jesus came out on the land and saw a very large crowd of people. He had love and mercy for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So He began to teach them many things.

His followers came to Him later in the day and said, "No people live in this place, and it is very late in the day. Send them away, so they can go to the towns and places around the towns to buy something to eat."

But He answered them, "Give them something to eat."

They said to Him, "Should we go and spend 200 denarii for bread, and give it to them to eat?"

He said to them, "How many loaves of bread do you have? Go and look."

When they knew, they said, "Five loaves of bread and two small fish."

Then Jesus ordered His followers to tell all the people to sit in groups on the green grass. So they sat down in groups of 100 people and groups of 50 people. Then Jesus took the five loaves of bread and the two small fish. He looked up to heaven, and He blessed the food and broke the bread into pieces. He gave the pieces of bread to the followers so they could give them to the people. He divided the two fish among them all. All the people ate and they had enough. Then His followers filled twelve baskets with the broken pieces of bread and fish that were left. There were five thousand men who ate the bread.

Jesus Walks on the Water

Then Jesus told His followers to go into the boat immediately, and to go ahead of Him to Bethsaida on the other side of the sea while He sent the large crowd away. Jesus went to the mountain to pray after He went away from the crowd. The boat was in the middle of the sea when evening came, and Jesus was alone on the land. Jesus saw that it was hard for His followers to make the boat move because the wind was coming against them. Jesus walked on the sea and came toward them between three and six o'clock in the morning. He wanted to walk near them, but they thought He was a spirit, and they called out when they saw Him walking on the sea. They called out because they all saw Him and they were afraid. But He spoke to them immediately and said, "Have courage and do not be afraid. It is I."

He went into the boat with them, and the wind stopped. They were full of wonder because they did not understand yet about the pieces of bread, because their hearts were hard.

They came to Gennesaret after they had gone across the sea, and they put down their anchor there near the land. The people knew Jesus immediately when they came out from the boat. They ran everywhere in the places near there and began to carry the sick people on sleeping mats to the places where they heard Jesus was. They put the sick people in the marketplaces wherever He went, whether into towns, or cities, or farms. They begged Him to let them touch even the edge of His clothes, and all the people who touched Him were healed.

© 2024 Randy Hurst