Monday, July 19, 2021

John 6.1-21 Translations and Notes (RCL9th Sunday after Pentecost Year B )

Mount of Beatitudes and Tabgha from the Sea of Galilee
The lectionary has been following along in Mark but now breaks away to John for the next five Sundays in order to recount the feeding of the 5000 and Jesus walking on water. The reading for 25 July 2021 in the RCL Year B is John 6.1-21.

My notes are not as extensive this week, but you will find some helpful observations. I also include my own translation. Some things I noticed:

  • I am not alone in thinking that John used the Gospel of Mark or at least Mark's sources. Comparing this story of the feeding and walking on water is evidence this is true. The story is much the same but told in John's distinctive style.
  • My notes on vv4-5 indicate, I think, that this feeding story is John's interpretation of what is the last supper in the Synoptic gospels. (Remember in John that the last supper is not a Passover meal.)
  • 6.1-21 are but the beginning of the discussion that will continue through 6.71. The bread becomes a matter of Jesus' body and blood and spirals into a sharp division that ends with Jesus alienating many of his followers. (6.66)
  • The story of Jesus walking on the sea is almost a diversion. Even the Greek quickly passes over it using participles. Unlike the feeding, it is not called a sign or a miracle.

For another 'view' of this reading, check out Steve Thomason's Visual Meditation on John 6

Here are my notes and translation: John 6.1-21 mgvh

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