He wanted to pass by them

Mark 6:47-52 is about the disciples getting in a boat without Jesus, rowing into a strong wind that battered the boat, seeing Jesus walk on water toward them, get into the boat, and the wind stops.

Mark 6:48 says “He came toward them walking on the sea and wanted to pass by them.”

Why did Jesus want to pass by them?

He told them earlier to go on ahead without Him so He could dismiss the crowd and I assume they had a meeting place already selected. Since they were planning to meet at the spot, Jesus wasn’t intending to get in the boat but pass by them?

And not just pass by them. He “wanted” to pass by them.

Did you notice that Jesus walking was faster than the boat? The boat was being battered by winds while they were rowing. So could it be that the boat was basically stalled out and not moving? How long would it take Jesus to walk to the other side?

Was Jesus besides walking on water, walking very fast?

CSB translation says “He wanted to pass by them”

NIV translation says “He was about to pass by them”

RSV translation says “He meant to pass them by”

How much is this symbolism? One blog suggested that since the feeding of the 5,000 mirrors the manna in the desert and that God passed before Moses, that Jesus was passing by the disciples to help bring home the meaning of the bread since they had not understood about the loaves.

Another blog suggests that Jesus wanted them to catch a glimpse of Him and be encouraged.


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