Chapter 6 Time of Transition
Jesus’ great Galilean Ministry lasted from about January of A.D. 28 to early April of A.D. 29. Then it came to a sudden end. Beginning with the death of John the Baptist, Jesus wished to take a break from his public teaching so that he could teach his disciples in private. He was also beginning to prepare himself for the suffering and death that was getting ever nearer. In this chapter we begin with Jesus preaching on both sides of the Sea of Galilee. This was in the late fall of A.D. 28.
Healing the Demon Possessed Men from Gadara （Matt. 8:28-34; Mark 5: 1-20; Luke 8: 26-39） 医治被鬼附的加大拉人（太8:28-34;可5:1-20;路8:26-39）
The morning following Jesus’ busiest day the Lord Jesus and his disciples were still in their boat on the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee. As soon as they came to shore, Jesus was met by two men possessed by demons. The Gospels tell us especially about what happened to one of the men.
Jesus spoke to the demons and threw them out of the man. The demons then entered a herd of pigs. These pigs then ran over a cliff into the sea. The man then began to witness to others about the power of God
Raising of Jairus’ Daughter （Matt. 9:1,18-26; Mark 5:21-43; Luke 8:40-56） 使睚鲁的女儿复活（太9:18-26;可5:21-43;路8:40-56）
After healing the men from Gadara, Jesus and his followers returned across the Sea. There he was met by a happy crowd. One man in particular was not only glad but needed to see Jesus. Jairus, the head of a local synagogue, begged Jesus to come and save his dying 12 year old daughter.
While Jesus was going with Jairus a woman with a severe bleeding problem made her way through the crowd and touched his clothes. According to Old Testament Law （15:25-27） she was unclean and was not permitted to touch anyone. But she too was desperate. Jesus showed that he knew all things by recognizing her need. He then showed he was all powerful by healing her. But Jesus would soon show that he had even greater power!
By this time Jairus’ daughter had died. When Jesus reached his house a crowd of crying people had already gathered. Jesus cleared the room where the dead girl lay , keeping only Peter, James, and John with him. He then restored the girl to life.
By raising this girl, and by raising a widow’s son in the town of Nain （Luke 7:11-17）， Jesus shows us not only his loved for suffering people but his total power and authority as well. When the Prince of Life speaks, even the dead listen and obey. Therefore, death loses its sting for the Christian （1 Cor. 15:55-56）。 When we remember Jairus’ daughter and the widow’s son, several New Testament verses take on special meaning for us. For example St. Paul, speaking about Judgment Day, says “the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command … and the dead in Christ will rise first … And so we will be with the Lord forever” （1 Thess. 4:16-17）。 Interestingly, 1 Thess. 4:18 concludes, “Therefore encourage each other with these words.”
Blind Men and Dumb Spirit （Matt. 9:27-34） 瞎子和哑巴（太9:27-34）
As Jesus was leaving Jairus’ home, he was asked to help other needy people. He healed two blind men so they could see again. He threw a demon out of a man so that he could speak again. The people were amazed. However, the Pharisees responded as usual: “It is by the prince of demons that he drives out demons” （Matt. 9:34）。
The Apostles Sent Forth （Matt. 9:35-11:1; Mark 6: 6-12; Luke 9:1-6） 差派使徒（太9:35-11:1;可6:6-12;路9:1-6）
It was probably during the early months of A.D. 29 that Jesus made his final preaching trip through Galilee. As he went from village to village preaching and healing, two terrible facts kept troubling his soul. First, the people were spiritually lost. Second, the Jewish religious leaders were not giving proper spiritual help and advice to the people.
Jesus’ love and concern now caused him to act. He called the disciples together and then sent them to preach to the people. However, before sending them out he gave them a set of guidelines to use throughout their ministries （Matt. 10:5-52）。 His instructions were as follows:
The Target （vv 5-6）。 Jesus told the disciples to do the work for which he was calling them. At this time they were to preach only to Israelites. Later they would be sent to all men （Acts 1:8）。
The Tools （vv 7-10）。 The Gospel makes the ministry. The pastor’s great tool is the message of God’s love for his people. The miracles were only to be a witness to the preaching of the Word.
The Method （vv 11-15）。 Armed with the Word, the disciples were to go in peace, wisdom, and innocence.
The Troubles （vv 16-25）。 The job was not going to be easy. The disciples were warned to be alert and morally blameless. When the forces of Satan worked against them, the Holy Spirit would be with the disciples and work through them. The message of Christ would sometimes divide families. Unbelievers would accuse the apostles of working with Satan’s power, just as they had accused Christ of that.
The Triumph （vv 26-40）。 To help them stand strong against the forces of evil the disciples were to remember that the Almighty God is all knowing, always present with his people, and always takes care of the people doing his work. Jesus himself would someday praise his faithful servants before his Father in heaven. Finally, through their preaching of the Gospel others would come to faith.
After Jesus had finished speaking to the disciples he sent them out in pairs. Perhaps they traveled and preached for as long as a month. We are not told. However, they came back filled with happiness at seeing how God had blessed the preaching of his Word.
Death of John the Baptist （Matt. 14:6-12; Mark 6:21-29; Luke 9:7-9） 施洗约翰的死（太14:6-12;可6:21-29;路9:7-9）
Sometime during March of A.D. 29, while the disciples were still preaching among the people, news of a terrible murder reached Jesus. John the Baptist had been executed by Herod because he had preached against the king’s adultery. Jesus must have been horrified by the ugly details of the story. But Jesus also was full of deep sorrow. The Forerunner’s life and work had been ended. Jesus knew that soon he would lay down his life even for the likes of the sinners who had beheaded John （Mark 9:12-13）。
Jesus’ First Withdrawal 耶稣第一次“撤退”
Just as John’s imprisonment marked the beginning of Jesus’ Galilean ministry （see Chapter 3） now John’s death marked its end. From this time on Jesus tried to stop his public ministry and teach the disciples in private. We call this his first withdrawal （drawing back from public ministry）。 This first effort to escape the crowds took him to the area near to Galilee.
Jesus Attempts to Withdraw （Matt. 14:13-14; Mark 6:33; Luke 9:10-11a; John 6:1） 耶稣尝试远离人群（太14:13-14;可6:33;路9:10-11a;约6:1）
When the disciples returned from their preaching trip they were full of excitement. Jesus wanted to discuss what they had done and think over John’s death. So he kept away from the crowd. Together with the disciples he left Capernaum and got on a boat which would take them six miles north to a more deserted area.
But the wind was blowing against them. At the same time the crowd on shore determined to see Jesus. They set out on foot toward Bethsaida Julia. Some men ran and were on hand to meet the ship when it put in to shore. They were joined by some of the people going to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover
Feeding of the Five Thousand （Matt. 14:15-21; Mark 6:34-44; Luke 9:11-17; John 6:2-14） 喂饱五千人（太14:15-21;可6:34-44;路9:11-17;约6:2-14）
It was clear that Jesus could not be alone with the disciples. Once again, as he had done so often in the past, Jesus disregarded his own feelings. his love moved him to heal the sick. His love compelled him to preach the Kingdom of God to them.
As evening approached, the people became hungry. Jesus’ pity caused him to use his power again. He ordered the people to sit down in groups on the green grass of the hillside. Then he said a prayer over two small fish and five barley rolls. He then divided them into pieces and had his disciples hand them around to the people. In this simple way Christ performed a miracle of great power. 5000 men plus women and children ate their fill, and 12 baskets of pieces were leftover.
Jesus Walks on Water （Matt. 14:22-36; Mark 6:45-56; John 6:15-21） 耶稣在水面上行走（太14:22-36;可6:45-56;约6:15-21）
Jesus’ miracle fed the crowd with bread and fish, but this also gave the crowd some new ideas. They did not see Jesus as a savior from sin. Instead they saw him as a free doctor, a person who could give them food, and a king who would drive out the Romans. So now they were prepared to make Jesus their king by force, if that would be necessary （John 6:15）。
Jesus knew their thoughts, and he wanted no part of their plans. Thus he sent away the disciples （who seemed to have been influenced by the crowd’s ideas） and ordered them to take a boat to Capernaum. Soon it would be night, so he sent the people away and then went himself to a mountain to pray. Earlier （see Chapter 4） He had spent a night in prayer before selecting his disciples.
Now he prayed for strength to teach the people what his true purpose was. While Jesus prayed, the disciples rowed. About 3:00 in the morning he decided to help his followers. For eight hours they had been rowing against the wind and had rowed only two-thirds of a mile. Now Jesus showed his power over the laws of nature. He simply walked across the lake to the boat. At first the disciples thought that Jesus was a ghost. Then, just when he was ready to climb into the boat Peter jumped out and tried to walk on the water to meet Jesus.
Peter showed that he had the faith of a hero but also the faith of a coward. As long as he looked at Jesus and trusted his Word he made good progress. However, when he became concerned about the wind and waves Peter began to sink. In his great fear he cried out for help. Jesus reached out and saved him.
Once in the boat, Jesus made the water quiet, again showing his control over nature. This miracle washed the spiritual sleep from the disciples’ eyes. Though they had not believed after the feeding of the 5000, they now boldly declared: “Truly you are the Son of God” （Matt. 14:33）。
Sermon on the Bread of Life （John 6:22-71） 关于生命之粮的信息（约翰福音6:22-71）
When the morning sun rose over Galilee the crowd began looking for Jesus. Unable to find him near Bethsaida Julia, they looked near Capernaum. In time they found him there in the synagogue.
Knowing that the crowd was still looking for a king to give them earthly blessings and not for a spiritual Messiah, Jesus preached a most timely sermon. He did speak about bread. He said that in the Old Testament it was God, not Moses, who fed the people manna in the wilderness. In this way he had prolonged their earthly lives （Exod. 16:1-15）。 Now Jesus himself, sent from heaven, is the bread which gives eternal life. Those who would be saved must believe in him.
If one listens carefully to this sermon he will hear the great ideas of salvation: grace alone, faith alone, Christ alone. Yet the crowd did not like much of what Christ said. They were upset to learn that Jesus would not immediately take care of all their physical needs.
After this event Jesus lost much of his popularity. “From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him” （John 6:66）。 Seeing this, Jesus asked the twelve disciples if they too wanted to leave him. But Jesus’ walk on the water and the sermon that followed had strengthened the faith in the disciples’ hearts. It was Peter who now made a bold statement of faith, confessing that Jesus was God’s Son and the only source of eternal life.
Arguments about Religious Laws （Matt. 15:1-20; Mark 7:1-23） 争论宗教律法（马太福音15:1-20;马可福音7:1-23）
Jesus’ popularity continued to be a concern for the Jewish rulers in distant Jerusalem. So the Sanhedrin, whose job it was to check the teachings of all preachers, sent men north to check on Jesus. These men accused Jesus’ disciples of doing wrong.
Religious Jews always washed their hands before eating. Some Pharisees even went so far as to suggest that not washing hands before eating was as serious a sin as adultery. The disciples did not wash nor did the multitude at the feeding of the 5000.
The Lord Jesus saw that the problem was not really hand washing. It was the difference between man-made laws and God’s Law. The Scribes and Pharisees considered man-made laws to be of equal importance with God’s Law. Jesus pointed out that they even used these laws to in ways that went against the Ten Commandments.
By this time a crowd had gathered hoping to hear an argument. Jesus explained that obeying God’s Law begins in the heart and is not a matter of just doing outward deeds.
The disciples, however, were upset that the powerful Pharisees were offended. Jesus explained that his Father would take care of these false teachers later. In the mean time Jesus repeated that an unclean heart, not dirty hands, make a man a sinner.