The Murder of John the Baptizer
About this time Herod the tetrarch heard the report concerning Jesus, and said to his companions, "This is John the Baptizer; he must have risen from the dead, and therefore the powers energize him!" For Herod had arrested John, put him in chains, and sent him to prison, on account of Herodia, the wife of his own brother Philip; because John had told him, "It is not legal for you to have her." And although wishing to murder him, he was afraid of the people, because all honoured him as a prophet. At Herod's birthday feast, however, the daughter of Herodia danced before the guests, and delighted Herod. He thereupon promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. And she, having been previously instigated by her mother, said, "Give me here upon a dish the head of John the Baptizer!" The king was horrified; but because of his oaths, and those who reclined with him, he ordered it to be given to her. And sending, he beheaded John in the prison. And his head was brought upon a dish, and handed to the girl; and she carried it to her mother!
The Feeding of the Five Thousand
And Jesus hearing it, went away privately in a boat to a desert place; but the people having become aware of it, they followed Him by land from the towns. When Jesus came out, He saw a great crowd, and pitied them; and restored the sick to health. But when the evening came, His disciples approached Him, saying, "This place is a desert, and the hour now late; dismiss the crowd, so that, going into the villages, they may buy food for themselves."
"They have no need to go away," remarked Jesus in reply; "give them victuals yourselves."
"We have nothing here," they responded, "except five loaves and two fishes."
"Bring those to Me," He said. And He ordered the crowd to recline upon the grassy places. And taking the five loaves and the two fishes, looking up to heaven, He blessed; and then breaking, He distributed the loaves to His disciples, and the disciples among the crowd. And they all partook and were satisfied; and of the broken pieces remaining, they picked up twelve full bags. Now those who had eaten numbered about five thousand, besides women and children.
He then immediately instructed His disciples to embark in the boat, and to precede Him to the other side, until He could dismiss the crowd. When He had sent the crowd away, He went up the hill privately, to pray. And during the evening He was there alone; while the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was against them. But about three o'clock in the morning He came towards them, walking upon the sea. And His disciples, seeing Him walking upon the water, were terrified, exclaiming, "It is a phantom!" and called out for fear. Jesus, however, at once spoke to them, saying, "Take courage! I live; be not afraid." Peter in reply to Him said, "Master, if You live, order me to come to You upon the waters." "Come!" said He. Peter accordingly got out of the boat, and walked upon the water towards Jesus. But seeing the strength of the wind, he became afraid; and beginning to sink, he exclaimed, "Master, save me!"
Jesus at once holding out His hand, lifted him up, and said to him, "Faint heart! why did you hesitate?" And when they had entered the vessel, He lulled the wind, Then those in the vessel coming to Him, paid homage, saying, "You most assuredly are a Son of God!"
And having crossed, they arrived in the land of Gennesaret. And the people of that place recognising Him, sent round the whole of the neighbour-hood and brought to Him all those who suffered from sickness; and begged that they might only be allowed to touch the hem of His cloak. And as many as touched Him were restored to health.
Transcribed by Mark Hicks on 12-31-2014