Bible Society of South Africa

Bible Reading Plan – Day 352

Bible text(s)

Jesus Feeds a Great Crowd

1After this, Jesus went across Lake Galilee (or, Lake Tiberias, as it is also called). 2A large crowd followed him, because they had seen his miracles of healing those who were ill. 3Jesus went up a hill and sat down with his disciples. 4The time for the Passover Festival was near. 5Jesus looked round and saw that a large crowd was coming to him, so he asked Philip, “Where can we buy enough food to feed all these people?” 6(He said this to test Philip; actually he already knew what he would do.)

7Philip answered, “For everyone to have even a little, it would take more than 200 silver coins to buy enough bread.”

8Another of his disciples, Andrew, who was Simon Peter's brother, said, 9“There is a boy here who has five loaves of barley bread and two fish. But they will certainly not be enough for all these people.”

10“Make the people sit down,” Jesus told them. (There was a lot of grass there.) So all the people sat down; there were about 5,000 men. 11Jesus took the bread, gave thanks to God, and distributed it to the people who were sitting there. He did the same with the fish, and they all had as much as they wanted. 12When they were all full, he said to his disciples, “Gather the pieces left over; let us not waste any.” 13So they gathered them all up and filled twelve baskets with the pieces left over from the five barley loaves which the people had eaten.

14Seeing this miracle that Jesus had performed, the people there said, “Surely this is the Prophet who was to come into the world!” 15Jesus knew that they were about to come and seize him in order to make him king by force; so he went off again to the hills by himself.

Jesus Walks on the Water

16When evening came, Jesus' disciples went down to the lake, 17got into a boat, and went back across the lake towards Capernaum. Night came on, and Jesus still had not come to them. 18By then a strong wind was blowing and stirring up the water. 19The disciples had rowed about five or six kilometres when they saw Jesus walking on the water, coming near the boat, and they were terrified. 20“Don't be afraid,” Jesus told them, “it is I!” 21Then they willingly took him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached land at the place they were heading for.

The People Seek Jesus

22Next day the crowd which had stayed on the other side of the lake realized that there had been only one boat there. They knew that Jesus had not gone in it with his disciples, but that they had left without him. 23Other boats, which were from Tiberias, came to shore near the place where the crowd had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24When the crowd saw that Jesus was not there, nor his disciples, they got into those boats and went to Capernaum, looking for him.

Jesus the Bread of Life

25When the people found Jesus on the other side of the lake, they said to him, “Teacher, when did you get here?”

26Jesus answered, “I am telling you the truth: you are looking for me because you ate the bread and had all you wanted, not because you understood my miracles. 27Do not work for food that goes bad; instead, work for the food that lasts for eternal life. This is the food which the Son of Man will give you, because God, the Father, has put his mark of approval on him.”

28So they asked him, “What can we do in order to do what God wants us to do?”

29Jesus answered, “What God wants you to do is to believe in the one he sent.”

30They replied, “What miracle will you perform so that we may see it and believe you? What will you do? 31Our ancestors ate manna in the desert, just as the scripture says, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’ ”

32“I am telling you the truth,” Jesus said. “What Moses gave you was not the bread from heaven; it is my Father who gives you the real bread from heaven. 33For the bread that God gives is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

34“Sir,” they asked him, “give us this bread always.”

35“I am the bread of life,” Jesus told them. “Those who come to me will never be hungry; those who believe in me will never be thirsty. 36Now, I told you that you have seen me but will not believe. 37Everyone whom my Father gives me will come to me. I will never turn away anyone who comes to me, 38because I have come down from heaven to do not my own will but the will of him who sent me. 39And it is the will of him who sent me that I should not lose any of all those he has given me, but that I should raise them all to life on the last day. 40For what my Father wants is that all who see the Son and believe in him should have eternal life. And I will raise them to life on the last day.”

41The people started grumbling about him, because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” 42So they said, “This man is Jesus son of Joseph, isn't he? We know his father and mother. How, then, does he now say he came down from heaven?”

43Jesus answered, “Stop grumbling among yourselves. 44No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him to me; and I will raise him to life on the last day. 45The prophets wrote, ‘Everyone will be taught by God.’ Anyone who hears the Father and learns from him comes to me. 46This does not mean that anyone has seen the Father; he who is from God is the only one who has seen the Father. 47I am telling you the truth: he who believes has eternal life. 48I am the bread of life. 49Your ancestors ate manna in the desert, but they died. 50But the bread that comes down from heaven is of such a kind that whoever eats it will not die. 51I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats this bread, he will live for ever. The bread that I will give him is my flesh, which I give so that the world may live.”

52This started an angry argument among them. “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” they asked.

53Jesus said to them, “I am telling you the truth: if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you will not have life in yourselves. 54Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood have eternal life, and I will raise them to life on the last day. 55For my flesh is the real food; my blood is the real drink. 56Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood live in me, and I live in them. 57The living Father sent me, and because of him I live also. In the same way whoever eats me will live because of me. 58This, then, is the bread that came down from heaven; it is not like the bread that your ancestors ate. They later died, but those who eat this bread will live for ever.”

59Jesus said this as he taught in the synagogue in Capernaum.

The Words of Eternal Life

60Many of his followers heard this and said, “This teaching is too hard. Who can listen to it?”

61Without being told, Jesus knew that they were grumbling about this, so he said to them, “Does this make you want to give up? 62Suppose, then, that you should see the Son of Man go back up to the place where he was before? 63What gives life is God's Spirit; human power is of no use at all. The words I have spoken to you bring God's life-giving Spirit. 64Yet some of you do not believe.” (Jesus knew from the very beginning who were the ones that would not believe and which one would betray him.) 65And he added, “This is the very reason I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father makes it possible for him to do so.”

66Because of this, many of Jesus' followers turned back and would not go with him any more. 67So he asked the twelve disciples, “And you — would you also like to leave?”

68Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life. 69And now we believe and know that you are the Holy One who has come from God.”

70Jesus replied, “I chose the twelve of you, didn't I? Yet one of you is a devil!” 71He was talking about Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. For Judas, even though he was one of the twelve disciples, was going to betray him.

Jesus and his Brothers

1After this, Jesus travelled in Galilee; he did not want to travel in Judea, because the Jewish authorities there were wanting to kill him. 2The time for the Festival of Shelters was near, 3so Jesus' brothers said to him, “Leave this place and go to Judea, so that your followers will see the things that you are doing. 4No one hides what he is doing if he wants to be well known. Since you are doing these things, let the whole world know about you!” 5(Not even his brothers believed in him.)

6Jesus said to them, “The right time for me has not yet come. Any time is right for you. 7The world cannot hate you, but it hates me, because I keep telling it that its ways are bad. 8You go on to the festival. I am not going to this festival, because the right time has not come for me.” 9He said this, and then stayed on in Galilee.

Jesus at the Festival of Shelters

10After his brothers had gone to the festival, Jesus also went; however, he did not go openly, but secretly. 11The Jewish authorities were looking for him at the festival. “Where is he?” they asked.

12There was much whispering about him in the crowd. “He is a good man,” some people said. “No,” others said, “he is misleading the people.” 13But no one talked about him openly, because they were afraid of the Jewish authorities.

14The festival was nearly half over when Jesus went to the Temple and began teaching. 15The Jewish authorities were greatly surprised and said, “How does this man know so much when he has never had any training?”

16Jesus answered, “What I teach is not my own teaching, but it comes from God, who sent me. 17Whoever is willing to do what God wants will know whether what I teach comes from God or whether I speak on my own authority. 18A person who speaks on his own authority is trying to gain glory for himself. But he who wants glory for the one who sent him is honest, and there is nothing false in him. 19Moses gave you the Law, didn't he? But not one of you obeys the Law. Why are you trying to kill me?”

20“You have a demon in you!” the crowd answered. “Who is trying to kill you?”

21Jesus answered, “I performed one miracle, and you were all surprised. 22Moses ordered you to circumcise your sons (although it was not Moses but your ancestors who started it), and so you circumcise a boy on the Sabbath. 23If a boy is circumcised on the Sabbath so that Moses' Law is not broken, why are you angry with me because I made a man completely well on the Sabbath? 24Stop judging by external standards, and judge by true standards.”

Is he the Messiah?

25Some of the people of Jerusalem said, “Isn't this the man the authorities are trying to kill? 26Look! He is talking in public, and they say nothing against him! Can it be that they really know that he is the Messiah? 27But when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from. And we all know where this man comes from.”

28As Jesus taught in the Temple, he said in a loud voice, “Do you really know me and know where I am from? I have not come on my own authority. He who sent me, however, is truthful. You do not know him, 29but I know him, because I come from him and he sent me.”

30Then they tried to seize him, but no one laid a hand on him, because his hour had not yet come. 31But many in the crowd believed in him and said, “When the Messiah comes, will he perform more miracles than this man has?”

John 6:1-7:31GNBOpen in Bible reader
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