Mark 8J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)
He again feeds the people miraculously
8 1-3 About this time it happened again that a large crowd collected and had nothing to eat. Jesus called the disciples over to him and said, “My heart goes out to this crowd; they have been with me three days now and they have no food left. If I send them off home without anything, they will collapse on the way—and some of them have come from a distance.”
4 His disciples replied, “Where could anyone find the food to feed them here in this deserted spot?”
5 “How many loaves have you got?” Jesus asked them. “Seven,” they replied.
6-10 So Jesus told the crowd to settle themselves on the ground. Then he took the seven loaves into his hands, and with a prayer of thanksgiving broke them, and gave them to the disciples to distribute to the people; and this they did. They had a few small fish as well, and after blessing them, Jesus told the disciples to give these also to the people. They ate and they were satisfied. Moreover, they picked up seven baskets full of pieces left over. The people numbered about four thousand. Jesus sent them home, and then he boarded the boat at once with his disciples and went on to the district of Dalmanutha.
Jesus refuses to give a sign
11-12 Now the Pharisees came out and began an argument with him, wanting a sign from Heaven. Jesus gave a deep sigh, and then said, “What makes this generation want a sign? I can tell you this, they will certainly not be given one!”
13 Then he left them and got aboard the boat again, and crossed the lake.
14-20 The disciples had forgotten to take any food and had only one loaf with them in the boat. Jesus spoke seriously to them, “Keep your eyes open! Be on your guard against the ‘yeast’ of the Pharisees and the ‘yeast’ of Herod!” And this sent them into an earnest consultation among themselves because they had brought no bread. Jesus knew it and said to them, “Why all this discussion about bringing no bread? Don’t you understand or grasp what I say even yet? Are you like the people who ‘having eyes, do not see, and having ears, do not hear’? Have your forgotten—when I broke five loaves for five thousand people, how many baskets full of pieces did you pick up?” “Twelve,” they replied. “And then there were seven loaves for four thousand people, how many baskets of pieces did you pick up?” “Seven,” they said.
21 “And does that still mean nothing to you?” he said.
Jesus restores sight
22-23 So they arrived at Bethsaida where a blind man was brought to him, with the earnest request that he should touch him. Jesus took the blind man’s hand and led him outside the village. Then he moistened his eyes with saliva and putting his hands on him, asked, “Can you see at all?”
24 The man looked up and said, “I can see people. They look like trees—only they are walking about.”
25-26 Then Jesus put his hands on his eyes once more and his sight came into focus. And he recovered and saw everything sharp and clear. And Jesus sent him off to his own house with the words, “Don’t even go into the village.”
Jesus’ question: Peter’s inspired answer
27 Jesus then went away with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, “Who are men saying that I am?”
28 “John the Baptist,” they answered. “But others say that you are Elijah or, some say, one of the prophets.”
29 Then he asked them, “But what about you—who do you say that I am?” “You are Christ!” answered Peter.
30 Then Jesus impressed it upon them that they must not mention this to anyone.
Jesus speaks of the future and of the cost of discipleship
31-33 And he began to teach them that it was inevitable that the Son of Man should go through much suffering and be utterly repudiated by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. He told them all this quite bluntly. This made Peter draw him on one side and take him to task about what he had said. But Jesus turned and faced his disciples and rebuked Peter. “Out of my way, Satan!” he said. “Peter, you are not looking at things from God’s point of view, but from man’s!”
34-38 Then he called his disciples and the people around him, and said to them, “If anyone wants to follow in my footsteps, he must give up all right to himself, take up his cross and follow me. The man who tries to save his life will lose it; it is the man who loses his life for my sake and the Gospel’s who will save it. What good can it do a man to gain the whole world at the price of his own soul? What can a man offer to buy back his soul once he has lost it? If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this unfaithful and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in the Father’s glory with the holy angels around him.”