Jesus Feeds the Four Thousand
During those days another large crowd gathered. Since they had nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them home hungry, they will collapse on the way, because some of them have come a long distance.” His disciples answered, “But where in this remote place can anyone get enough bread to feed them?” “How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked. “Seven,” they replied. He told the crowd to sit down on the ground. When he had taken the seven loaves and given thanks, he broke them and gave them to his disciples to distribute to the people, and they did so. They had a few small fish as well; he gave thanks for them also and told the disciples to distribute them. The people ate and were satisfied. Afterward the disciples picked up seven basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. About four thousand were present. After he had sent them away, he got into the boat with his disciples and went to the region of Dalmanutha.
Here we have a repeat of the feeding of the five thousand (as in Matthew's Gospel) but with 4000 people, 7 loaves and a few small fish. Two events, two same happenings, two same miracles and yet each recorded differently by the gospel writers.
It is this sort of differences in the gospel accounts that brings the New Testament to life; four accounts of one life from four different perspectives. Jesus lived and lives still through the men who wrote about him.
Lord of all, we see you through the eyes and experiences of the gospel writers, we thank you for their accounts and wisdom and the way they bring your life alive for us. Amen.