John 6:7 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 6:7, NIV: Philip answered him, 'It would take more than half a year's wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!'

John 6:7, ESV: Philip answered him, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread would not be enough for each of them to get a little.”

John 6:7, KJV: Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.

John 6:7, NASB: Philip answered Him, 'Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not enough for them, for each to receive just a little!'

John 6:7, NLT: Philip replied, 'Even if we worked for months, we wouldn't have enough money to feed them!'

John 6:7, CSB: Philip answered him, "Two hundred denarii worth of bread wouldn't be enough for each of them to have a little."

What does John 6:7 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jesus asks the disciples how they plan to handle the hungry crowd, numbering some 5,000 men, presumably with many more women and children in attendance as well. This is meant as a test of their faith (John 6:6). Other Gospels indicate that the initial reaction of the disciples is to attempt to ignore the problem entirely (Mark 6:36). Jesus' response, seen later (John 6:11), confronts their common error of starting from human effort, rather than appealing to God to handle the results.

Philip, it seems, was focused on a financial solution to the problem. In that era, a worker would earn about one denarius for a day's labor. Two hundred denarii, then is a common man's pay for 200 days. The crowd, numbering five thousand men—not counting whatever women and children were there—would have required the wages from eight month's labor just to give each one a taste. Sarcastic or not, Philip's stance is that attempting to feed so many people is effectively impossible since it would be incredibly expensive.