What does Mark 6:37 mean?
ESV: But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said to him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give it to them to eat?”
NIV: But he answered, 'You give them something to eat.' They said to him, 'That would take more than half a year's wages! Are we to go and spend that much on bread and give it to them to eat?'
NASB: But He answered them, 'You give them something to eat!' And they *said to Him, 'Shall we go and spend two hundred denarii on bread, and give it to them to eat?'
CSB: "You give them something to eat," he responded.They said to him, "Should we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give them something to eat? "
NLT: But Jesus said, 'You feed them.' 'With what?' they asked. 'We’d have to work for months to earn enough money to buy food for all these people!'
KJV: He answered and said unto them, Give ye them to eat. And they say unto him, Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat?
NKJV: But He answered and said to them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said to Him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give them something to eat?”
Verse Commentary:
The Twelve have just had a very successful time of preaching, healing, and exorcising demons (Mark 6:7-–13). Now they are faced with well over five thousand hungry people (Matthew 14:21). The Old Testament records prophets who made much food out of little (1 Kings 17:8–16; 2 Kings 4:1–7, 42–44). The Twelve should remember this, but seem unable to come up with anything but an unfeasible earthly solution to the problem.

A denarii is roughly the day's wages of a common laborer (Matthew 20:2). Philip points out that it would take nearly a year's income to give everyone there just a bite (John 6:7). Jesus wants the Twelve to learn that God will always give them what they need to do His will. Meeting physical needs of others should be a priority for Christ-followers, and refusal may reflect a lack of faith (James 2:15–16) and love (1 John 3:17–18).

But the Twelve are not the first to doubt God's provision. Moses had the same problem while leading the Israelites. The people were tired of manna, and Moses was so frustrated with their complaints he asked God to kill him (Numbers 11:13–15). Even when he doubted God outright, God provided (Numbers 11:18–23, 31–35).

If we ask according to His will, with righteous motives, God will provide (James 4:3), but that doesn't mean God will always provide abundantly (Luke 12:15). God is more interested in our hearts than our bellies. He will give us what we need to obey Him (Philippians 4:19), even if that "daily bread" isn't our favorite flavor (Matthew 6:11). God's love and concern for us means supplying us with what we need in order to accomplish His will. Hard though it may be to accept, a truly loving Father doesn't necessarily give His children what they "want," even if those children think it's something they "need."
Verse Context:
Mark 6:33–44 provides another depiction of Jesus' miraculous feeding of thousands of people. The Twelve have worked so hard on their first missions trip they haven't had time to eat (Mark 6:31), and an attempt to rest is foiled by a demanding crowd. Instead of avoiding the interlopers, Jesus heals (Matthew 14:14) and teaches them. Instead of dismissing them, He feeds them. The Twelve again witness Jesus' great power and authority but don't catch the lesson: Jesus is God and can provide whatever anyone needs. This story is also found in Matthew 14:13–21 and Luke 9:11–17, and it is one of the few miracles mentioned in John (John 6:2–14). This makes it the only miracle referenced in all four Gospels.
Chapter Summary:
Jesus returns to His hometown of Nazareth, but the people there are faithless and skeptical. As a result, Jesus performs no more than a few minor miracles. He then assigns His twelve apostles to travel in pairs, preaching repentance and healing various conditions. Mark then takes a brief detour to explain the death of John the Baptist, beheaded after Herod Antipas is tricked by his wife. The focus then returns to Jesus, explaining His miraculous feeding of thousands of people, walking on water, and healing people in Gennesaret.
Chapter Context:
Even as the Twelve are given opportunity to wield some of Jesus' power and authority, they still struggle to understand. They misinterpret who He is, what He has come to do, and how much He will ask of them. They fear Jesus' display of deity, but seem to dismiss the murderous rejection of His hometown and the death of John the Baptist. It's easy to have faith in a prophet who seems poised to rescue Israel from foreign rule. It is still beyond them to understand that He is actually God.
Book Summary:
The Gospel of Mark emphasizes both Jesus' servanthood and His role as the promised Messiah: the Son of God. This is done through a concise, action-packed style. Mark provides relatively few details, instead focusing on actions and simple statements. This relates to the Gospel's authorship, which is believed to be based on the memories of the apostle Peter. These include many of Jesus' miracles, in contrast to other Gospels which include many more of Jesus' teachings and parables. Mark also makes frequent mention of Jesus' ministry being misunderstood by others.
Accessed 5/25/2024 12:22:59 AM
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