At the end of a long day, the apostles met with Jesus and told him everything that they had done and what they had taught. So many people would follow Jesus around that very often he and his closest followers did not have any time to be alone. Jesus said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.”
Jesus and his apostles boarded a boat and sailed to a place where they hoped they would have some time away from all of the people. Once word had spread where Jesus had gone, the crowds followed him there as well, even though it meant they would not be able to stop for food along the way. Jesus and his apostles also had not had time to stop to eat.
Jesus felt the people were like sheep without a shepherd. He stepped out of the boat and began to talk to the people who had come to see him. While he was speaking, Jesus’ apostles came up to him and said, “This is a deserted place and it is already very late. Dismiss them so that they can go to the surrounding farms and villages and buy themselves something to eat.”
But Jesus had a different idea. He said to them, “Give them some food yourselves.”
“Are we to buy two hundred days’ wages worth of food and give it to them to eat?” they asked.
Then Jesus said, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.”
So the disciples counted what they had and they told Jesus, “Five loaves and two fish.”
Jesus instructed the people to sit down in small groups on the grass. Row after row, many hundreds of people, sat down on the ground. Jesus took the bread and fish the apostles had brought to him, looked up toward heaven and prayed over the food. He divided up the fish and the bread and shared it with his apostles and the people.
After everyone had eaten, which was more then 5,000 men, women and children, there was enough food left over to fill 12 baskets.
READ MORE ABOUT IT:
1. What did the apostles want the people to do?
2. What did Jesus do instead?