Did Jesus really multiply the loaves?


#1

I have heard some ‘biblical scholars’ claim that Jesus did not literally multiply the loaves of bread, but that he merely convinced people to share what they already had.

Two questions:

  1. Is this interpretation consistent with Church teaching and tradition?

  2. Is it ok for Catholics to take either side of the issue ?


#2

[quote=PaulKorb]I have heard some ‘biblical scholars’ claim that Jesus did not literally multiply the loaves of bread, but that he merely convinced people to share what they already had.

Two questions:

  1. Is this interpretation consistent with Church teaching and tradition?

  2. Is it ok for Catholics to take either side of the issue ?
    [/quote]

  3. No. The people would not have recognized Him as a prophet had all that He done was get them to share…no, they recognized Him because it truly was a miracle.

  4. No, the Church teaches that it was a miracle.


#3

EENS,

I heard a version of the “miracle of sharing” version of the the multiplication miracle for this past Sunday’s homily.

Can you direct us to a good article or a source that talks about the authentic teaching of the church as concerns the miracle of the loaves and fishes?

Thanks!
VC


#4

[quote=PaulKorb]I have heard some ‘biblical scholars’ claim that Jesus did not literally multiply the loaves of bread, but that he merely convinced people to share what they already had.

Two questions:

  1. Is this interpretation consistent with Church teaching and tradition?

  2. Is it ok for Catholics to take either side of the issue ?
    [/quote]

I have heard both interprtations in recent years only.

I always believed in the multiplication of loaves and fish. I still do despite some differing opinions among priests. I can’t understand how some ‘modern’ priests think they can reinterpret this story for their own satisfaction.
The worst interpretation I heard was that the crowd had stored bread in their sleeves (old-fashioned lunchpails :rolleyes: ) which they revealed for sharing after Jesus requested them to. The miracle was suppose to be that the crowd shared!

I believe the miracle of the multiplication was a foreshadow of how Jesus today shares himself with us.


#5

Don’t believe any priest who says the multiplication was not a miracle!


#6

Last year our Deacon told us truly was a miraculous event during his homily, but it is ridiculous to think all those people came to see Jesus without packing food.

My kids were told it was a miracle of sharing in our Catholic school.

The common thread was both the Deacon and the teacher had their degrees from our local seminary. And now the Diocese is mandating the laity in ministry positions to attend the same place. A youth minister was considering becoming a Protestant after attending and receiving their degree there.

The Catholic school defense was the Jerome Bible commentary.

I had to again reteach my kids.

Great reading - ** The Gospels are Historical**

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#7

I believe that Jesus really multipled the loaves and fishes. Jesus is the Son of God; why shouldn’t He be capable of performing miracles?

This was in the homily yesterday, and apparently, my pastor agrees with me. :slight_smile:

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#8

[quote=PaulKorb]I have heard some ‘biblical scholars’ claim that Jesus did not literally multiply the loaves of bread, but that he merely convinced people to share what they already had.

Two questions:

  1. Is this interpretation consistent with Church teaching and tradition?

  2. Is it ok for Catholics to take either side of the issue ?
    [/quote]

As I reflect on the Gospel reading, I am struck by the fact that the disciples said that they did not have enough to feed the 5000 heads (with woman and children this would be close to 15,000). I think that the point of those who would say that Jesus just convinced everyone to share is well taken but it is not enough without divine intervention. If we as humans think that we can do it alone then we are sorely mistaken. We need God to multiply our effort!!!

In addition anyone who claims that God did not multiply some loaves and fish must also have problems with the ressurection and the Eucharist! Why do these people pick this miracle? What about the wedding at Cana? What about all of the other miracles? Do they have a natural explanation for these miracles also?


#9

[quote=SHEMP] Do they have a natural explanation for these miracles also?
[/quote]

Yup!!! Markans who try to date the Gospels late take this approach.


#10

Paul, here are a couple of sites that address this too-often heard interpretation:

catholic.com/thisrock/1996/9604fea1.asp

frjcmaximilian.blogspot.com/

cuf.org/Faithfacts/details_view.asp?ffID=22


#11

[quote=FCEGM]Paul, here are a couple of sites that address this too-often heard interpretation:

catholic.com/thisrock/1996/9604fea1.asp

frjcmaximilian.blogspot.com/

cuf.org/Faithfacts/details_view.asp?ffID=22
[/quote]

thanks – great stuff


#12

The summer replacement priest in our parish is from Ghana, a really “on fire” preacher, if you know what I mean. Do you want to take a guess at what he believes?

I then heard the associate pastor preach. He gave the four different interpretations of this passage but didn’t seem to come down on the side of any particular interpretation. However, he did say that the miraculous multiplication interpretation fits with the plain reading of the text.

A priest on TV gave the passage a Eucharistic interpretation in keeping with the Year of the Eucharist.

I am going to read Father Robert Altier’s Sunday homily on the way home on the subway.

Blessings,
Gene


#13

[quote=PaulKorb]I have heard some ‘biblical scholars’ claim that Jesus did not literally multiply the loaves of bread, but that he merely convinced people to share what they already had.
[/quote]

Based on what evidence?

– Mark L. Chance.


#14

[quote=PaulKorb]thanks – great stuff
[/quote]

I was happy to supply them, Paul. Whenever I hear that Gospel read at Mass I begin praying for the priest that he won’t wander into heresy. I began to do this after the first time I heard the pastor at my former church in California go off the rails into modernist-speak. :frowning: So far, so good. :slight_smile:


#15

[quote=PaulKorb]I have heard some ‘biblical scholars’ claim that Jesus did not literally multiply the loaves of bread, but that he merely convinced people to share what they already had.
[/quote]

I’ve heard that one too, but it seemed quite laughable to me. Somehow I don’t think that this “miracle of sharing” would have been worth preserving in the scriptues if that’s all that happened


#16

[quote=JimG]I’ve heard that one too, but it seemed quite laughable to me. Somehow I don’t think that this “miracle of sharing” would have been worth preserving in the scriptues if that’s all that happened
[/quote]

This discussion has stirred a memory from WAY back when I was a young teenager babysitting for children of a JW family. The parents would leave tracts around which I would occasionally read; one expounded at length on how this miracle was only an example of sharing. Even at that age I found that rather a silly way to explain away the obvious and to try to diminish the Lord and His power. Funny company some Catholics keep. :rolleyes:


#17

If he had the divine ability to change the water into wine…then he was also able to multiply the loaves…Jesus was both fully divine and human and as we know, God can do all things.


#18

If everyone just shared what they had, how did we get 12 extra baskets full of extra food? If I were going to hear someone speak, I might bring a lunch or a snack, but not enough for extra. I would assume most people do the same, so if everyone just shared, where did all the extra food come from?


#19

Of course Jesus really multiplied the loaves!!! :mad: You trying to be funny?


#20

1st feast

Gospel of Mark
Jesus and disciples sailed and disembarked.
They formed a great crowd on the shore,
5,000 men
Everyone sat down in "drinking groups"
and “garden beds” by 100s and 50s.
Jesus had ordered people to sit.
Jesus offered thanks to God
Jesus took the loaves and fish and divided them.
Everyone ate and was filled.

now look at the Odyssey written prior to Mark

Telemachus and Athena sailed and disembarked.
They found a great crowd on the shore,
4,500 men
Everyone sat down in “companies”, nine
groups of 500 each
Peisistraus ordered his guest to sit.
Nester sacrificed, and others prayed.
They took the meat and divided the food.
Everyone ate and was filled.

Now it is obvious that Mark took this story from the Odyssey and changed the names and a few basic things and was able to tell a story about Jesus.

Whether this happened or not is not the point. Jesus always provides even when it seems impossible. Trust in your Lord and you will never be disapointed.


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