Luke 9:10

ESV On their return the apostles told him all that they had done. And he took them and withdrew apart to a town called Bethsaida.
NIV When the apostles returned, they reported to Jesus what they had done. Then he took them with him and they withdrew by themselves to a town called Bethsaida,
NASB When the apostles returned, they gave an account to Him of all that they had done. And taking them with Him, He withdrew privately to a city called Bethsaida.
CSB When the apostles returned, they reported to Jesus all that they had done. He took them along and withdrew privately to a town called Bethsaida.
NLT When the apostles returned, they told Jesus everything they had done. Then he slipped quietly away with them toward the town of Bethsaida.
KJV And the apostles, when they were returned, told him all that they had done. And he took them, and went aside privately into a desert place belonging to the city called Bethsaida.

What does Luke 9:10 mean?

After a quick detour to mention Herod Antipas's confusion about Jesus (Luke 9:7–9), Luke returns to the twelve disciples' foray into ministry. "All that they had done" includes healing the sick, raising the dead, cleansing lepers, casting out demons, and proclaiming, "The kingdom of heaven is at hand," all while trusting God for their physical needs (Matthew 10:7–11).

Now, Jesus provides another test. He sent the disciples out with no money or food and little in the way of supplies, promising that God would provide what they needed through others (Luke 9:3). They have seen God's provision. Do they trust God with bigger, seemingly insurmountable needs? What about fifteen-or-so thousand hungry people?

Bethsaida is a town on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee. It is on the east side of the Jordan River which comes in to fill the lake. Bethsaida is the hometown of Peter, Andrew, and Philip (John 1:44), though Peter and Andrew live in Capernaum (Mark 1:16–21, 29). Since Jesus will later tell the disciples to "get into the boat and go before him to the other side, to Bethsaida" (Mark 6:45), the exact location is unclear: the other side of the Jordan, or the wilderness, or somewhere else? Suffice it to say, Jesus directs them to an uninhabited place in the region around the city of Bethsaida.

Mark is more specific about Jesus' intention to let the disciples rest, saying that the rigors of their ministry described in Luke 9:1–6 had left them as tired and hungry as Jesus often was (Mark 6:31). Matthew ties their withdrawal to Jesus hearing about John the Baptist's execution (Matthew 14:13).

The phrase "withdrew apart" is meant to highlight solitude, particularly from other people. There is no nearby place for the coming crowd to get food (Luke 9:11–12). Instead of receiving rest, however, the disciples witness the miracle of God's provision. They'd had nothing to eat; now, God provides food.
What is the Gospel?
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