Christ Feeds 4000

by Jesse Lyman Hurlbut

The crowd clung to Jesus and followed him for three days. By that time whatever food the people had brought with them had been eaten and yet they stayed with Jesus, never thinking of their needs. Jesus called his disciples together and said to them:

"My heart is touched on account of all these people; for they have now been with me three days and they have nothing to eat. Some of them have come from distant places, and I cannot bear to send them away hungry for fear that they may break down by the way."

"Where can we," the disciples asked him, "in a lonely place like this, with no towns near, find bread for such a crowd as this?"

"How many loaves have you?" asked Jesus.

"We have in all seven loaves," they answered, "and with them a few small fishes."

Jesus told all the crowds to sit down upon the ground; and when they had done so, he held up the loaves and the fishes, and gave thanks to his heavenly Father for them. Then he broke the loaves into pieces, also the dried fish, and gave them to the disciples. The disciples distributed them among the people; and everyone had all that he wanted to eat.

After the meal, the disciples went around with large baskets, and picked up of the food left over seven baskets full. At this time the people who were fed by Jesus were four thousand men, besides women and children. When all were satisfied, Jesus told them to go back to their homes; then with his disciples, he went into the boat and sailed across the Sea of Galilee.