John 6:2 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 6:2, NIV: "and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the signs he had performed by healing the sick."

John 6:2, ESV: "And a large crowd was following him, because they saw the signs that he was doing on the sick."

John 6:2, KJV: "And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased."

John 6:2, NASB: "A large crowd was following Him, because they were watching the signs which He was performing on those who were sick."

John 6:2, NLT: "A huge crowd kept following him wherever he went, because they saw his miraculous signs as he healed the sick."

John 6:2, CSB: "A huge crowd was following him because they saw the signs that he was performing by healing the sick."

What does John 6:2 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

At the end of chapter 5, Jesus was seen in conflict with local religious authorities. This was inspired by His healing of a man near the Pool of Bethesda on a Sabbath day (John 5:1–18). Now, several months later, Jesus' other miraculous healings have attracted a "large crowd." This part of the gospel of John describes the high point of Jesus' public popularity. The miracles Jesus performed were partly intended for just this reason; one of the purposes of these spectacles was attracting attention to His ministry.

At the same time, John describes Jesus' miracles as "signs." This word, semion in Greek, was chosen for a reason. "Signs" relate a particular message; they are meant to lead people to certain conclusions. The next miracle Jesus performs will be His most public and most well-received: feeding thousands with a tiny lunch of bread and fish. But the people who see this miracle, for the most part, will miss the message behind the sign. As Jesus will explain later, the purpose of His ministry is not bread, or spectacle.

As a result of this challenging truth, the large crowd of people listening to Jesus' teachings will dissolve (John 6:66).