Matthew 14:23

ESV And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone,
NIV After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone,
NASB After He had sent the crowds away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone.
CSB After dismissing the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. Well into the night, he was there alone.
NLT After sending them home, he went up into the hills by himself to pray. Night fell while he was there alone.
KJV And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.

What does Matthew 14:23 mean?

After performing an astonishing miracle, Jesus immediately sent the crowds of people away on foot. He ordered the disciples away by boat (Matthew 14:13–22). He is eager for some time alone on the high hills near Bethsaida (John 6:15). More specifically, Jesus wanted time alone with His Father in prayer. Matthew doesn't tell us what Jesus prayed about, but the fact that Jesus was aware of His need for prayer, even as the Son of God, should motivate those who follow Him to seek out time to pray, as well.

Jesus was still alone "when evening came." The period known as "evening" in this era began in late afternoon and lasted through sunset. Evening had already started when the disciples first brought up the issue of food for the people (Matthew 14:15), so Matthew probably means this was nearing dusk. It was late in the evening as Jesus prayed alone on the mountain. By this time, the disciples were stuck rowing on a rough sea against a strong wind as they worked their way across the Sea of Galilee.
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