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Jn 6

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Feeding the Five Thousand
1 AFTER these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is that of Tiberias. 2 And a great multitude followed him, because they saw the miracles which he did on them that were diseased. 3 Jesus therefore went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples. 4 Now the pasch, the festival day of the Jews, was near at hand. 5 When Jesus therefore had lifted up his eyes, and seen that a very great multitude cometh to him, he said to Philip: Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? 6 And this he said to try him; for he himself knew what he would do. 7 Philip answered him: Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one may take a little. 8 One of his disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, saith to him: 9 There is a boy here that hath five barley loaves, and two fishes; but what are these among so many? 10 Then Jesus said: Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. The men therefore sat down, in number about five thousand. 11 And Jesus took the loaves: and when he had given thanks, he distributed to them that were set down. In like manner also of the fishes, as much as they would. 12 And when they were filled, he said to his disciples: Gather up the fragments that remain, lest they be lost. 13 They gathered up therefore, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above to them that had eaten. 14 Now those men, when they had seen what a miracle Jesus had done, said: This is of a truth the prophet, that is to come into the world. 15 Jesus therefore, when he knew that they would come to take him by force, and make him king, fled again into the mountain himself alone.

The Walking on the Water
16 And when evening was come, his disciples went down to the sea. 17 And when they had gone up into a ship, they went over the sea to Capharnaum; and it was now dark, and Jesus was not come unto them. 18 And the sea arose, by reason of a great wind that blew. 19 When they had rowed therefore about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they see Jesus walking upon the sea, and drawing nigh to the ship, and they were afraid. 20 But he saith to them: It is I; be not afraid. 21 They were willing therefore to take him into the ship; and presently the ship was at the land to which they were going.

Healings at Gennesaret
22 The next day, the multitude that stood on the other side of the sea, saw that there was no other ship there but one, and that Jesus had not entered into the ship with his disciples, but that his disciples were gone away alone. 23 But other ships came in from Tiberias; nigh unto the place where they had eaten the bread, the Lord giving thanks. 24 When therefore the multitude saw that Jesus was not there, nor his disciples, they took shipping, and came to Capharnaum, seeking for Jesus. 25 And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him: Rabbi, when camest thou hither?

The Bread of Life
(John 6:26-59)
26 Jesus answered them, and said: Amen, amen I say to you, you seek me, not because you have seen miracles, but because you did eat of the loaves, and were filled. 27 Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that which endureth unto life everlasting, which the Son of man will give you. For him hath God, the Father, sealed. 28 They said therefore unto him: What shall we do, that we may work the works of God? 29 Jesus answered, and said to them: This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he hath sent. 30 They said therefore to him: What sign therefore dost thou shew, that we may see, and may believe thee? What dost thou work? 31 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert, as it is written: He gave them bread from heaven to eat. 32 Then Jesus said to them: Amen, amen I say to you; Moses gave you not bread from heaven, but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is that which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life to the world. 34 They said therefore unto him: Lord, give us always this bread. 35 And Jesus said to them: I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall not hunger: and he that believeth in me shall never thirst. 36 But I said unto you, that you also have seen me, and you believe not. 37 All that the Father giveth to me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me, I will not cast out. 38 Because I came down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him that sent me. 39 Now this is the will of the Father who sent me: that of all that he hath given me, I should lose nothing; but should raise it up again in the last day. 40 And this is the will of my Father that sent me: that every one who seeth the Son, and believeth in him, may have life everlasting, and I will raise him up in the last day. 41 The Jews therefore murmured at him, because he had said: I am the living bread which came down from heaven. 42 And they said: Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How then saith he, I came down from heaven? 43 Jesus therefore answered, and said to them: Murmur not among yourselves. 44 No man can come to me, except the Father, who hath sent me, draw him; and I will raise him up in the last day. 45 It is written in the prophets: And they shall all be taught of God. Every one that hath heard of the Father, and hath learned, cometh to me. 46 Not that any man hath seen the Father; but he who is of God, he hath seen the Father. 47 Amen, amen I say unto you: He that believeth in me, hath everlasting life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your fathers did eat manna in the desert, and are dead. 50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven; that if any man eat of it, he may not die. 51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven. 52 If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever; and the bread that I will give, is my flesh, for the life of the world. 53 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying: How can this man give us his flesh to eat? 54 Then Jesus said to them: Amen, amen I say unto you: Except you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you shall not have life in you. 55 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath everlasting life: and I will raise him up in the last day. 56 For my flesh is meat indeed: and my blood is drink indeed. 57 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, abideth in me, and I in him. 58 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth me, the same also shall live by me. 59 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead. He that eateth this bread, shall live for ever.

Many Disciples Take Offense at Jesus
(John 6:60-66)
60 These things he said, teaching in the synagogue, in Capharnaum. 61 Many therefore of his disciples, hearing it, said: This saying is hard, and who can hear it? 62 But Jesus, knowing in himself, that his disciples murmured at this, said to them: Doth this scandalize you? 63 If then you shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? 64 It is the spirit that quickeneth: the flesh profiteth nothing. The words that I have spoken to you, are spirit and life. 65 But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning, who they were that did not believe, and who he was, that would betray him. 66 And he said: Therefore did I say to you, that no man can come to me, unless it be given him by my Father.

Peter's Confession at Caesarea Philippi
67 After this many of his disciples went back; and walked no more with him. 68 Then Jesus said to the twelve: Will you also go away? 69 And Simon Peter answered him: Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. 70 And we have believed and have known, that thou art the Christ, the Son of God. 71 Jesus answered them: Have not I chosen you twelve; and one of you is a devil? 72 Now he meant Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon: for this same was about to betray him, whereas he was one of the twelve.

Gospel Harmony of John 6
Feeding the Five Thousand
(John 6:1-15 Matt 14:13-21 Mark 6:32-44 Luke 9:10-17)
After stating how the report of John’s death was brought to Christ, Matthew continues his account, and introduces it in the following connection: “When Jesus heard of it, He departed thence by ship into a desert place apart: and when the people had heard thereof, they followed Him on foot out of the cities. And He went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and He healed their sick.”(Mt 14:13-14) He mentions, therefore, that this took place immediately after John had suffered. Consequently it was after this that those things took place which have been previously recorded—namely, the circumstances which alarmed Herod, and induced him to say,“Jn have I beheaded.”(Luke 9:9) For it must surely I be understood that these incidents occurred subsequently which report carried to the ears of Herod, so that he became anxious, and was inperplexity as to who that person possibly could be of whom he heard things so remarkable, when he had himself put Jn to death. Mark, again, after relating how Jn suffered, mentions that the disciples who had been sent forth returned to Jesus, and told Him all that they had done and taught; and that the Lord (a fact which he alone records) directed them to rest for a little while in a desert place, and that He went on board a vessel with them, and departed; and that the crowds of people, when they perceived that movement, went before them to that place; and that the Lord had compassion on them, and taught them many things; and that, when the hour was now advancing, it came to pass that all who were present were made to eat of the five loaves and the two fishes.(Mark 6:30-41) This miracle has been recorded by all the four evangelists. For in like manner, Luke, who has given an account of the death of Jn at a much earlier stage in his narrative,(Luke 3:20) in connection with the occasion of which we have spoken, in the present context tells us first of Herod’s perplexity as to who the Lord could be, and immediately thereafter appends statements to the same effect with those in Mark,—namely, that the apostles returned to Him, and reported to Him all that they had done; and that then He took them with Him and departed into a desert place, and that the multitudes followed Him thither, and that He spake to them concerning the kingdom of God, and restored those who stood in need of healing. Then, too, he mentions that, when the day was declining, the miracle of the five loaves was wrought.(Luke 9:10-17)

But John, again, who differs greatly from those three in this respect, that he deals more with the discourses which the Lord delivered than with the works which He so marvellously wrought, after recording how He left Judaea and departed the second time into Galilee, which departure is understood to have taken place at the time to which the other evangelists also refer when they tell us that on John’s imprisonment He went into Galilee,—after recording this, I say, Jn inserts in the immediate context of his narrative the considerable discourse which He spake as He was passing through Samaria, on the occasion of His meeting with the Samaritan woman whom He found at the well; and then he states that two days after this He departed thence and went into Galilee, and that thereupon He came to Cana of Galilee, where He had turned the water into wine, and that there He healed the son of a certain nobleman.(Jn 4:3,5,43-54) But as to other things which the rest have told us He did and said in Galilee, Jn is silent. At the same time, however, he mentions something which the others have left unnoticed,—namely, the fact that He went up to Jerusalem on the day of the feast, and there wrought the miracle on the man who had the infirmity of thirty-eight years standing, and who found no one by whose help he might be carried down to the pool in which people afflicted with various diseases were healed. In connection with this, Jn also relates how He spake many things on that occasion. He tells us, further, that after these events He departed across the sea of Galilee, which is also the sea of Tiberias, and that a great multitude followed Him; that thereupon He went away to a mountain, and there sat with His disciples,—the passover, a feast of the Jews, being then nigh; that then, on lifting up His eyes and seeing a very great company, He fed them with the five loaves and the two fishes;(Jn 5-6:13) which notice is given us also by the other evangelists. And this makes it certain that he has passed by those incidents which form the course along which these others have come to introduce the notice of this miracle into their narratives. Nevertheless, while different methods of narration, as it appears, are prosecuted, and while the first three evangelists have thus left unnoticed certain matters which the fourth has recorded, we see how those three, on the one hand, who have been keeping nearly the same course, have found a direct meeting-point with each other at this miracle of the five loaves; and how this fourth writer, on the other hand, who is conversant above all with the profound teachings of the Lord’s discourses, in relating some other matters on which the rest are silent, has sped round in a certain method upon their track, and, while about to soar off from their pathway after a brief space again into the region of loftier subjects, has found a meeting-point with them in the view of presenting this narrative of the miracle of the five loaves, which is common to them all.

Matthew then proceeds and carries on his narrative in due consecution to the said incident connected with the five loaves in the following manner: “And when it was evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals. But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat;” and so forth, down to where we read, “And the number of those who ate was five thousand men, besides women and children.”(Mt 14:15-21) This miracle, therefore, which all the four evangelists record,(Mark 6:34-44 Luke 9:12-17) and in which they are supposed to betray certain discrepancies with each other, must be examined and subjected to discussion, in order that we may also learn from this instance some rules which will be applicable to all other similar cases in the form of principles regulating modes of statement in which, however diversethey may be, the same sense is nevertheless retained, and the same veracity in the expressionof matters of fact is preserved. And, indeed, this investigation ought to begin not with Matthew, although that would be in accordance with the order in which the evangelists stand, but rather with John, by whom the narrative in question is told with such particularity as to record even the names of the disciples with whom the Lord conversed on this subject. For he gives the history in the following terms: “When Jesus than lifted up His eyes, and saw a very great company come unto Him, He saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? And this He said to prove him; for He Himselfknew what He would do. Philip answered Him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little. One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, saith unto Him, There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two fishes; but what are they among so many? Jesus said therefore, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. Jesus then took the loaves; and when He had given thanks, He distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. And when they were filled, He said unto His disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that they be not lost. Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.”(Jn 5:5-13)

The inquiry which we have here to handle does not concern itself with a statement given by this evangelist, in which he specifies the kind of loaves; for he has not omitted to mention, what has been omitted by the others, that they were barley loaves. Neither does the question deal with what he has left unnoticed,—namely, the fact that, in addition to the five thousand men, there were also women and children, as Matthew tells us. And it ought now by all means to be a settled matter, and one kept regularly in view in all such investigations, that no one should find any difficulty in the there circumstance that something which is unrecorded by one writer is related by another. But the question here is as to how the several matters narrated by these writers may be [shown to be] all true, so that the one of them, in giving his own peculiar version, does not put out of court the account offered by the other. For if the Lord, according to the narrative of John, on seeing the multitudes before Him, asked Philip,with the view of proving him, whence bread might be got to be given to them, a difficulty may be raised as to the truth of the statement which is made by the others,—namely, that the disciples first said to the Lord that He should send the multitudes away, in order that they might go and purchase food for themselves in the neighbouring localities, and that He made this reply to them, according to Matthew: “They need not depart; give ye them to eat.”(Mt 14:16) With this last Mc and Lc also agree, only that they leave out the words, “They need not depart.” We are to suppose, therefore, that after these words the Lord looked at the multitude, and spoke to Philip in the terms which Jn records, but which those others have omitted. Then the reply which, according to John, was made by Philip, is mentioned by Mc as having been given by the disciples, —the intention being, that we should understand Philip to have returned this answer as the mouthpiece of the rest; although they may also have put the plural number in place of the singular, according to very frequent usage. The words here actually ascribed to Philip—namely, “Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little”(Jn 6:7) —have their counterpart in this version by Mark, “Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat?”(Mark 6:37) The expression, again, which the same Mc relates to have been used by the Lord, namely, “How many loaves have ye?” has been passed by without notice by the rest. On the other hand, the statement occurring in John, to the effect that Andrew made the suggestion about the five loaves and the two fishes, appears in the others, who use here the plural number instead of the singular, as a notice referring the suggestion to the disciples generally. And, indeed, Lc has coupled Philip’s reply together with Andrew’s answer in one sentence. For when he says, “We have no more but five loaves and two fishes,” he reports Andrew’s response; but when he adds, “except we should go and buy meat for all this people,” he seems to carry us back to Philip’s reply, only that he has left unnoticed the “two hundred pennyworth.” At the same time, that [sentence about the going and buying meat] may also be understood to be implied in Andrew’s own words. For after saying, “There is a lad here which hath five barley loaves and two fishes,” he likewise subjoined, “But what are they among so many?” And this last clause really means the same as the expression in question, namely, “except we should go and buy meat for all this people.”

From all this variety of statement which is found in connection with a genuine harmony in regard to the matters of fact and the ideas conveyed, it becomes sufficiently clear that we have the wholesome lesson inculcated upon us, hat what we have to look to in studying a person’s words is nothing else than the intention of the speakers; in setting forth which intention all truthful narrators ought to take the utmost pains when they record anything, whether it may relate to man, or to angels, or to God. For the subjects’ mind and intention admit of being expressed in words which should leave no appearance of any discrepancies as regards the matter of fact.

In this connection, it is true, we ought not to omit to direct the reader’s attention to certain other matters which may turn out to be of a kindred nature with those already considered. One of these is found in the circumstance that Lc has stated that they were ordered to sit down by fifties, whereas Mark’s version is that it was by hundreds and by fifties. This difference, however, creates no real difficulty. The truth is, that the one has reported simply a part, and the other has given the whole. For the evangelist who has introduced the notice of the hundreds as well as the fifties has just mentioned something which the other has left unmentioned. But there is no contradiction between them on that account. If, indeed, the one had noticed only the fifties, and the other only the hundreds, they might certainly have seemed to be in some antagonism with each other, and it might not have been easy to make it plain that both instructions were actually uttered, although only the one has been specified by the former writer, and the other by the latter. And yet, even in such a case, who will not acknowledge that when the matter was subjected to more careful consideration, the solution should have been discovered? This I have instanced now for this reason, that matters of that kind do often present themselves, which, while they really contain no discrepancies, appear to do so to persons who pay insufficient attention to them, and pronounce upon them inconsiderately.
(St. Augustine Harmony of the Gospels 2.45-46)

The Walking on the Water
(John 6:16-21 Matt 14:22-33 Mark 6:45-52)
Matthew goes on with his account in the following terms: “And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, He was there alone. But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary. And in the fourth watch of the night He came unto them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit;” and so on, down to the words, “They came and worshipped Him, saying, Of a truth Thou art the Son of God.”(Mt 14:23-33) In like manner, Mark, after narrating the miracle of the five loaves, gives his account of this same incident in the following terms: “And when it was late, the ship was in the midst of the sea, and He alone on the land. And He saw them toiling in rowing: for the wind was contrary to them,” and so on.(Mark 6:47-54) This is similar to Matthew’s version, except that nothing is said as to Peter’s walking upon the waters. But here we must see to it, that no difficulty be found in what Mc has stated regarding the Lord, namely, that, when He walked upon the waters, He would also have passed by them. For in what way could they have understood this, were it not that He was really proceeding in a different direction from them, as if minded to pass those persons by like strangers, who were so far from recognizing Him that they took Him to be a spirit? Who, however, is so obtuse as not to perceive that this bears a mystical significance? At the same time, too, He came to the help of the men in their perturbation and outcry, and said to them, “Be of good cheer, it is I; be not afraid.” What is the explanation, therefore, of His wish to pass by those persons whom nevertheless He thus encouraged when they were in terror, but that that intention to pass them by was made to serve the purpose of drawing forth those cries to which it was meet to bear succour?

Furthermore, Jn still tarries for a little space with these others. For, after his recital of the miracle of the five loaves, he also gives us some account of the vessel that laboured, and of the Lord’s act in walking upon the sea. This notice he connects with his preceding narrative in the following manner: “When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take Him by force and make Him a king, He departed again into a mountain Himself alone. And when it became late, His disciples went down unto the sea; and when they had entered into a ship, they came over the sea to Capharnaum: and it was now dark, and Jesus was not come to them. And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew,” and so on.(Jn 6:15-21) In this there cannot appear to be anything contrary to the records preserved in the other Gospels, unless it be the circumstance that Matthew tells us how, when the multitudes were sent away, He went up into a mountain, in order that there He might pray alone; while Jn states that He was on a mountain with those same multitudes whom He fed with the five loaves. But seeing that Jn also informs us how He departed into a mountain after the said miracle, to preclude His being taken possession of by the multitudes, who wished to make Him a king, it is surely evident that they had come down from the mountain to more level ground when those loaves were provided for the crowds. And consequently there is no contradiction between the statements made by Matthew and Jn as to His going up again to the mountain. The only difference is, that Matthew uses the phrase “He went up,” while John’s term is “He departed.” And there would be an antagonism between these two, only if in departing He had not gone up. Nor, again, is any want of harmony betrayed by the fact that Matthew’s words are, “He went up into a mountain apart to pray;” whereas Jn puts it thus: “When He perceived that they would come to make Him a king, He departed again into a mountain Himself alone.” Surely the matter of the departure is in no way a thing antagonistic to the matter of prayer. For, indeed, the Lord, who in His own person transformed the body of our humiliation in order that He might make it like unto the body of His own glory,(Phil 3:21) hereby taught us also the truth that the matter of departure should be to us in like manner grave matter for prayer. Neither, again, is there any defect of consistency proved by the circumstance that Matthew has told us first how He commanded His disciples to embark in the little ship, and to go before Him unto the other side of the lake until He sent the multitudes away, and then informs us that, after the multitudes were sent away, He Himself went up into a mountain alone to pray; while Jn mentions first that He departed unto a mountain alone, and then proceeds thus: “And when it became late, His disciples came down unto the sea; and when they had entered into a ship,” etc. For who will not perceive that, in recapitulating the facts, Jn has spoken of something as actually done at a later point by the disciples, which Jesus had already charged them to do before His own departure unto the mountain; just as it is a familiar procedure in discourse, to revert in some fashion or other to any matter which otherwise would have been passed over But inasmuch as it may not be specifically noted that a reversion, especially when done briefly and instantaneously, is made to something omitted, the auditors are sometimes led to suppose that the occurrence which is mentioned at the later stage also took place literally at the later period. In this way the evangelist’s statement really is, that to those persons whom he had described as embarking in the ship and coming across the sea to Capharnaum, the Lord came, walking toward them upon the waters, as they were toiling in the deep; which approach of the Lord of course took place at the earlier point, during the said voyage in which they were making their way to Capharnaum.

On the other hand, Luke, after the record of the miracle of the five loaves, passes to another subject, and diverges from this order of narration. For he makes no mention of that little ship, and of the Lord’s pathway over the waters. But after the statement conveyed in these words, “And they did all eat, and were filled, and there was taken up of fragments that remained to them twelve baskets,” he has subjoined the following notice: “And it came to pass, as He was alone praying, His disciples were with Him; and He asked them, saying, Who say the people that I am?”(Luke 9:17-18) Thus he relates in this succession something new, which is not given by those three who have left us the account of the manner in which the Lord walked upon the waters, and came to the disciples when they were on the voyage. It ought not, however, on this account, to be supposed that it was on that same mountain to which Matthew has told us He went up in order to pray alone, that He said to His disciples, “Who say the people that I am?” For Luke, too, seems to harmonize with Matthew in this, because his words are, “as He was alone praying;” while Matthew’s were, “He went up unto a mountain alone to pray.” But it must by all means be held to have been on a different occasion that He put this question, since [it is said here, both that] He prayed alone, and [that] the disciples were with Him. Thus Luke, indeed, has mentioned only the fact of His being alone, but has said nothing of His being without His disciples, as is the case with Matthew and John, since [according to these latter] they left Him in order to go before Him to the other side of the sea. For with unmistakeable plainness Lc has added the statement that “His disciples also were with Him.” Consequently, in saying that He was alone, he meant his statement to refer to the multitudes, who did not abide with Him. (St. Augustine Harmony of the Gospels 2.47)

Healings at Gennesaret
(John 6:22-25 Matt 14:34-36 Mark 6:53-56)
Matthew proceeds as follows: “And when they were gone over, they came into the land of Genesar. And when the men of that place had knowledge of Him, they sent out unto all that country round about, and brought unto Him all that were diseased, and besought Him that they might only touch the hem of His garment: and as many as touched were made perfectly whole. Then came to Him scribes and Pharisees from Jerusalem, saying, Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread,” and so on, down to the words, “But to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.”(Mt 14:34-15:20)This is also related by Mark, in a way which precludes the raising of any question about discrepancies. For anything expressed here by the one in a form differing from that used by the other, involves at least no departure from identity in sense. John, on the other hand, fixing his attention, as his wont is, upon the Lord’s discourses, passes on from the notice of the ship, which the Lord reached by walking upon the waters, to what took place after they disembarked upon the land, and mentions that He took occasion from the eating of the bread to deliver many lessons, dealing pre-eminently with divine things. After this address, too, his narrative is again borne on to one subject after another, in a sublime strain.(Jn 6:22-72) At the same time, this transition which he thus makes to different themes does not involve any real want of harmony, although he exhibits certain divergencies from these others, with the order of events presented by the rest of the evangelists. For what is there to hinder us from supposing at once that those persons, whose story is given by Matthew and Mark, were healed by the Lord, and that He delivered this discourse which John recounts to the people who followed Him across the sea? Such a supposition is made all the more reasonable by the fact that Capharnaum, to which place they are said, according to John, to have crossed, is near the take of Genesar; and that, again, is the district into which they came, according to Matthew, on landing). (St. Augustine Harmony of the Gospels 2.43)

Peter's Confession at Caesarea Philippi
(John 6:67-71 Matt 16:13-20 Mark 8:27-30 Luke 9:18-21)
Matthew continues thus: “And Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi; and He asked His disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I, the Son of man, am? And they said, Some say that Thou art Jn the Baptist; some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets;” and so on, down to the words,” And whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”(Mt 16:13-19) Mc relates this nearly in the same order. But he has brought in before it a narrative which is given by him alone, —namely, that regarding the giving of sight to that blind man who said to the Lord, “I see men as trees walking.”(Mark 8:22-29) Luke, again, also records this incident, inserting it after his account of the miracle of the five loaves;(Luke 9:18-20) and, as we have already shown above, the order of recollection which is followed in his case is not antagonistic to the order adopted by these others. Some difficulty, however, may be imagined in the circumstance that Luke’s representation bears that the Lord put this question, as to whom men held Him to be, to His disciples at a time when He was alone praying, and when His disciples were also with Him; whereas Mark, on the other hand, tells us that the question was put by Him to the disciples when they were on the way. But this will be a difficulty only to the man who has never prayed on the way.

I recollect having already stated that no one should suppose that Peter received that name for the first time on the occasion when He said to Him, “Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church.” For the time at which he did obtain this name was that referred to by John, when he mentions that he was addressed in these terms: “Thou shalt be called Cephas, which is, by interpretation, Peter.”(Jn 1:42) Hence, too, we are as little to think that Peter got this designation on the occasion to which Mc alludes, when he recounts the twelve apostles individually by name, and tells us how James and Jn were called the sons of thunder, merely on the ground that in that passage he has recorded the fact that He surnamed him Peter.(Mark 3:16-19) For that circumstance is noticed there simply because it was suggested to the writer’s recollection at that particular point, and not because it took place in actual fact at that specific time. (St. Augustine Harmony of the Gospels 2.53)
Subpages (1): Jn 7