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The Death of John the Baptist
- At that time, Herod the Tetrarch(1)“Tetrarch” is composed of two Greek words; the first means “four”, the second means “ruler”. Properly, it means someone who rules over a fourth part of a region. Essentially, this means a minor governor. heard the news of Jesus
- and he told his servants; “This is John the Baptist. He rose from the dead and that’s why these miraculous powers work in Him.”
- For after seizing John, Herod bound him and put him in prison because of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip.
- For John was saying to him; “It’s not lawful for you to have her.”
- Although Herod wished to kill him, he feared the crowd because they regarded him as a prophet.
- Then – while celebrating Herod’s birthday feast – the daughter of Herodias(2)“daughter of Herodias” History tells us that her name was Salome, who had become Herod’s stepdaughter at this point. A common estimate for her birth year is 14 AD, meaning she was in her mid-teens when she danced before Herod. One common view is that Salome danced sensually to entice, but that seems unlikely given these two facts. danced in their midst and pleased Herod.
- For this reason, he promised with a vow to give her whatever she asked.
- But being urged by her mother, she said; “Give me John the Baptist’s head, here on a platter.”
- And the king – being deeply grieved because of his vows and the guests reclining(3)“reclining” in the first century, you didn’t “sit” at a table in chairs. Rather, you laid down with your feet sticking out in a reclining position. at the table – commanded John’s head to be given.
- And sending orders, he beheaded John in the prison.
- And his head was brought on a platter and was given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother.
- And coming forward, his disciples took the body and buried it. And going to Jesus, they told Him.
- So hearing this, Jesus withdrew from there on His own by boat to a desolate place. And hearing this, the crowds followed Him on foot from the cities.
- And going out, He saw a great crowd and was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.
Feeding the Five Thousand
- Then it became evening, so the disciples approached Him saying; “This place is desolate and the hour is already late. Therefore, dismiss the crowds so that going into the towns, they might buy food for themselves.
- But Jesus said to them; “They don’t need to leave. You give them something to eat.”
- And they said to Him; “We don’t have anything here, except five loaves of bread and two fish.”
- And He said; “Bring them here to Me.”
- And commanding the crowds to sit down on the grass, He took the five loaves and two fish. And looking up to heaven, He blessed them. And breaking the loaves, He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds.
- And all ate and were satisfied. And they picked up the excess broken pieces; twelve baskets full.
- Now, the men who ate were about five thousand men, without counting women and children.
Jesus Walks On Water
- And immediately, He compelled the disciples to step into the boat and to go before Him to the other side of the sea, until He sent away the crowds.
- And after sending away the crowds, He went up to the mountain on His own to pray. When evening came, He was there alone.
- Now, the boat was already many stadia(4)a “stadia” is ~606 English feet, which is ~185 meters. from land. It was being buffeted by the waves, for the wind was hostile.
- Then, in the fourth watch of the night, He went to them walking on the sea(5)quotation/allusion to Job 9:8 and Job 38:16.
- And seeing Him walking on the sea, the disciples were perplexed and deeply shaken,(6)“perplexed and deeply shaken” is a single word in the Greek, with that exact meaning. saying; “It’s a ghost!” and they shrieked from fear.
- And immediately, Jesus spoke to them saying; “Have courage and don’t fear; I Am.”(7)“I Am” the Greek construction here is identical to John 8:58, where Jesus proclaims His Deity. However, it could also be translated “it is I”, which is more common. This is possibly a reference several Old Testament passages, primarily Exodus 3:14 where God appears to Moses and reveals His name is “I Am”.
- And answering Him, Peter said; “Lord, if it’s you, command me to come to you on the waters.”
- Then He said; “Come.” And coming down from the boat, Peter walked on the water and came to Jesus.
- But seeing the violent wind, he was afraid and was starting to sink in the sea. He cried out saying; “Lord save me!”
- And immediately reaching out his hand, Jesus caught him and said to him; “You of little faith, for why did you doubt?”(8)“doubt” the Greek word here comes from two words, meaning “double” and “standing”. That is, someone who has two ideas in their mind and can’t – or won’t – decide between the two.
- And as they were climbing into the boat, the wind ceased.
- Then the men in the boat bowed down at His feet,(9)“bowed down at… …feet” is one word in Greek, often translated “worship”, which isn’t inaccurate (Jesus is God, and thus is worthy of our worship). It comes from the Greek words: “pros” meaning “towards”, and “kyneo” meaning “to kiss”. It literally refers to bowing down on your hands and knees and kissing the ground in front of a superior or authority figure. Some Egyptian pictographs have the hand outstretched, as if to send the “kiss” toward the one being revered. saying; “Truly, you are God’s Son.”
Healing at Gennesaret
- And crossing over the sea, they came to the land of Gennesaret.
- And recognizing Him, the men of that place sent messengers to that whole region, and they brought all the sick to Him.
- And they were begging Him, so they might merely touch the fringe of His robe.(10)Malachi 4:2 speaks of the “sun of righteousness” which has “healing in it’s wings”. The Jews believed this prophecy referred to the Messiah. The Hebrew word translated “wings” literally means any extremity (wing, arm, leg, etc.), including the “extremity” – or fringe – of a garment. Thus they believed touching the fringe of the Messiah’s robe would bring healing. This is almost certainly an indication that they believed Jesus was the Messiah, because they applied a Messianic prophecy to Him. And as many as touched it were completely cured.
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