1 He left there and went back to His hometown, and His disciples followed Him. 2 When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue. And the people were dumbfounded when they heard Him, and said, "Where did He get all these things? What sort of wisdom is it that has been given Him? And such mighty deeds are done by Him! 3 Is He not the carpenter, Mary's son, and the brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And do not His sisters live here among us?" And so they found a cause for stumbling over him.
4 But Jesus said to them, "A prophet never fails to be honored except in his native neighborhood, among his kinsmen, and in his own home." 5 He could not do any mighty deeds there, except that He put His hands on a few ailing people and cured them. 6 And He wondered at their lack of faith in Him. Then He made a circle of the villages and continued teaching. 7 And He called the Twelve to Him and sent them out two by two, and gave them power over the foul spirits. 8 He ordered them not to take anything for the journey except a staff, no bread, no bag, no money in the purse; 9 they were to go with plain sandals on their feet and not to wear two shirts. 10 And He continued to say to them, "Whenever you put up at a house, stay there until you leave that place. 11 And if any place refuses to welcome you or to listen to you, when you leave there shake off the very dust from the soles of your feet as a warning to them."
12 So they went out and preached that men should repent, 13 and drove out many demons, and cured many sick people by anointing them with oil.
14 King Herod heard of Him, for His name was now on everybody's lips, and people were saying that John the Baptist had risen from the dead, and that this was why such mighty powers were working in Him. 15 But others were saying that He was Elijah, and still others that He was a prophet like the prophets of old.
16 But when Herod heard of Him, he said, "John, whom I beheaded, has risen from the dead." 17 For this very Herod had sent and seized John and bound him and put him in prison, just to please Herodias, his brother Philip's wife, because Herod had married her. 18 For John kept saying to Herod, "It is not right for you to be living with your brother's wife." 19 So Herodias had it in for him and wanted to have him killed. But she could not have it done, 20 for Herod stood in awe of John, because he knew that he was an upright and holy man, and so he protected him. When he heard him speak, he was very much disturbed, and yet he liked to hear him.
21 When a holiday came and Herod on his birthday gave a banquet to his state officials, his military officers, and other leading men of Galilee, 22 Herodias' daughter came in and danced for them, and fascinated Herod and his guests. So the king said to the girl, "Ask me for anything you want, and I will give it to you." 23 And he promised her on oath, "I will give you anything you ask for, up to half of my kingdom."
24 She left the room and asked her mother, "What shall I ask him for?" And she answered, "The head of John the Baptist."
25 Then she rushed at once before the king, and made this request, "I want you this very minute to give me John the Baptist's head on a platter."
26 The king, although exceedingly sorry, yet on account of his oath and his guests, did not like to refuse her, 27 and so at once ordered a soldier of his guard to bring his head. The soldier went off and beheaded John in the prison 28 and brought back his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. 29 When his disciples heard of it, they came and carried off his corpse and laid it in a tomb.
30 The apostles returned and met Jesus and reported to Him everything, how many things they had done and taught. 31 And He said to them, "Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and rest a little while." For there was an endless stream of people coming and going, and they had no time even to eat. 32 So they got off in their boat to be by themselves in a quiet place. 33 But many people saw them start and knew of it and ran around the lake from all the towns and got there ahead of them. 34 So when He got out of the boat, He saw a great crowd waiting, and His heart was moved with pity at the sight of them, for they were like sheep without a shepherd; and so He proceeded to teach them a number of things.
35 When it grew late, His disciples came to Him and said, "This is a destitute place and it is already late. 36 Send the crowds off to the farms and villages to buy themselves something to eat."
37 But He answered them, "Give them something to eat yourselves." Then they said to Him, "Shall we go and buy forty dollars' worth of bread and give it to them to eat?"
38 Then He asked them, "How many loaves have you? Go and see." They found out and told Him, "Five, and two fish."
39 Then He ordered them all to sit down in rows on the green grass. 40 And so they tumbled down in groups of hundreds and fifties. 41 Then He took the five loaves and the two fish and looked up to heaven and blessed the loaves and broke them in pieces and gave the pieces to the disciples to pass on to the people. He also divided the two fish among them all. 42 And they all ate and had plenty. 43 And the pieces they took up from the loaves made twelve basketfuls besides the pieces from the fish. 44 There were five thousand men who ate the loaves.
45 Then He insisted that the disciples at once get into their boat and cross ahead of Him toward Bethsaida, while He was sending the crowd away. 46 After He had told them "Goodbye," He went up the hill to pray. 47 Now when evening had come, the boat was in the middle of the sea, while He was alone on land. 48 And because He saw that they were struggling at the oars, for the wind was against them, a while before daybreak He started toward them walking on the sea, and He meant to go right up beside them. 49 But when they saw Him walking on the sea, they thought that it was a ghost and screamed aloud, 50 for they all saw Him and were terrified. But He at once spoke to them and said, "Keep up courage! It is I; stop being afraid." 51 Then He went up to them and got into the boat, and the wind lulled. They were completely dumbfounded, 52 for they did not understand the lesson of the loaves; their minds were dull.
53 They crossed over to the other side and came to Gennesaret and anchored the boat. 54 As soon as they got out of the boat, the people recognized Him 55 and hurried all over the countryside and began to bring the sick to Him on their pallets, wherever they heard He was. 56 And whatever villages or towns or country places He came to, they would lay the sick in the market-places and beg Him to let them touch just the tassel of His coat, and everybody that touched it was cured.