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27. The Miraculous Feeding of the People with Five Loaves.

Soon after the death of John the Baptist, Jesus Christ with His disciples withdrew by boat to another shore of the sea. The people ran after them on foot along the shore. When the boat landed, a great throng of people had gathered. Jesus Christ seeing the crowd of people had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. He began to teach them many things, spoke to them of the Kingdom of God, and healed their sick. The people so zealously listened to Him that they did not notice that the day was drawing to a close.

The disciples came to Jesus Christ and said, "This is an isolated place, and the hour is now late; send them away to go into the country and villages round about and buy themselves something to eat."

But the Lord answered the disciples, "They need not go away; you give them something to eat."

The Apostle Philip said to Him, "Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little."

Jesus said, "How many loaves have you? Go and see."

When they had found out, the Apostle Andrew said, "There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?"

The Lord said, "Bring them here to me," and directed the disciples to seat the people in groups of hundreds and fifties. Then, Jesus Christ took the five loaves and the two fish and looked up to Heaven, blessed them, broke them, and gave the loaves to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds.

They all ate and were satisfied. When they were filled, Jesus Christ said to His disciples, "Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost."

The disciples took up what was left over and filled twelve full baskets, and those who ate were about five thousand men not counting the women and children.

In another instance, the Lord fed four thousand men, also not counting women and children, with seven loaves and a few fish.

Note: See the Gospels of Matthew 14:14-21; Mark 6:32-44; Luke 9:10-17; John 6:1-15.

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