Matthew 14

jesus-walk-water.jpgGreetings!

John the Baptist Beheaded

 1At that time Herod the tetrarch heard the reports about Jesus, 2and he said to his attendants, “This is John the Baptist; he has risen from the dead! That is why miraculous powers are at work in him.”

 3Now Herod had arrested John and bound him and put him in prison because of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, 4for John had been saying to him: “It is not lawful for you to have her.” 5Herod wanted to kill John, but he was afraid of the people, because they considered him a prophet.

 6On Herod’s birthday the daughter of Herodias danced for them and pleased Herod so much 7that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she asked. 8Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” 9The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and his dinner guests, he ordered that her request be granted 10and had John beheaded in the prison. 11His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who carried it to her mother. 12John’s disciples came and took his body and buried it. Then they went and told Jesus.

John the Baptist endured a grisly death because of a foolish statement by the King.

Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand

This is the first of two recorded mass feedings done by Jesus.  There were 5,000 men, so with women and children the crowd was probably 20,000 or so.  There were twelve basketfuls left over – one for each Disciple. 

 13When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. 14When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.

 15As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.”

 16Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”

 17“We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered.

 18“Bring them here to me,” he said. 19And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 20They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 21The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.

Jesus Walks on the Water

This is a story you may have heard before.  Peter sometimes gets criticized for being impulsive and for his denial of Jesus the night before his crucifixion, but Peter was the only person besides Jesus to ever walk on water.  He only stumbled when he took his eyes off of Jesus.

 22Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, 24but the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.

 25During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.

 27But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”

 28“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”

 29“Come,” he said.

   Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”

 31Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

 32And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. 33Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

 34When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret. 35And when the men of that place recognized Jesus, they sent word to all the surrounding country. People brought all their sick to him 36and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed.

What passages stood out to you, and why?

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