New Testament Lesson

Come Follow Me, March 25-31: Matthew 14-15, Mark 6-7, John 5-6

Come Follow Me, March 25-31: Matthew 14-15, Mark 6-7, John 5-6

These chapters tell of miracles and messages: Jesus can walk on water and feed thousands. Through these actions, Jesus not only serves people but also tells them who he is.

“Jesus Walks on Water,” excerpted from The Gospel according to Mark, Julie M. Smith, 424-432.
his excerpt includes the New Rendition, Notes, and Analysis. “This story is not primarily about Jesus walking on water but rather about Jesus’ attempt to reveal his true nature to his disciples and their (comical) failure to understand him. Jesus presents himself in this story in a manner by which it should have been clear to his disciples that he is doing what only God can do (by walking on water and by passing them by), but they don’t understand; rather, they assume that he is the one thing that he cannot possibly be. They not only do not recognize Jesus as God, but they also do not recognize him as Jesus. Mark’s irony is as overwhelming as it is sad.”

"Miracles of Jesus in the Gospel of John," Blair G. Van Dyke, Religious Educator 9, no. 3.
“With what began as a meager portion of bread and fishes, Christ fed thousands (see John 6:11–13). Among other things, this miracle is a sign of Christ’s power to multiply. It is reminiscent of the Creation of the earth, wherein anything Jehovah touched was increased, organized, improved upon, and was good (see Genesis 1). It is also reminiscent of the manner in which Jehovah fed Israel manna in the wilderness (see Exodus 16:15). It is significant that leftovers from this sign of power filled twelve baskets. Jesus easily could have multiplied the “exact” amount necessary to feed the throng but chose to multiply an excess of food.”

“We Believe and Are Sure,” by Camille Fronk Olson, 2018 Sidney B. Sperry Symposium, video, and published in Thou Art the Christ, the Son of the Living God
How did Peter gain his testimony (John 6:68, 69)? Scriptural evidence suggests that he and others first believed that Jesus was divinely sent and then acted upon that belief. The stories of casting his net into the sea, of walking on water, and asking Jesus for help in understanding his parables show that Peter was vigilant in his efforts to learn. But his incomplete testimony needed to grow, moving him to a greater appreciation for what Jesus had come to do.

“Hard Sayings and Safe Spaces: Making Room for Struggle as Well as Faith,” by Eric D. Huntsman, BYU Devotional, Aug. 7, 2018, video and transcript.
 In John 6:60-69, Jesus’ followers complained, “This is a hard saying; who can hear it?” Jesus asked the Twelve if they would also go away, but Peter responded that they believed and were sure that Jesus is the Christ. In this devotional, Eric Huntsman tells how we can deal with challenges (hard sayings) and struggles that we often feel we must endure alone and without the understanding of fellow Saints. Huntsman encourages all of us to help each other through nights of struggle and love one another as Jesus loves us.

Chart 8 -1: "Jesus Affirms His Divinity with the Greek Words I AM," Charting the New Testament
In John 6:35, Jesus declares, "I am the bread of life." The Greek words in this verse for the phrase "I AM" are ego eimi. By identifying himself with these Greek words, Jesus clearly states his divine identity as the Lord God of Israel. This chart lists the passages throughout the New Testament that also contain the words ego eimi.