And when Jesus was passed over again
by ship unto the other side,
much¹ people² gathered³ unto him:
and he was nigh unto the sea⁴.
¹) Many, much, a large group.
²) A crowd or multitude.
⁴) Near the sea.
Mark.5.21 - And when Jesus had recrossed in the boat to the other side, a great throng gathered about Him, and He was at the lakeshore. [AMP] And when Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered about him, and he was beside the sea. [ESV] After Jesus crossed over by boat, a large crowd met him at the seaside. [MSB] And when Jesus was passed over again by ship unto the other side, much people gathered unto him: and he was nigh unto the sea. [KJV] When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake. [NIV] When Jesus went back across to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him on the shore. [NLT] Now when Jesus had crossed over again by boat to the other side, a great multitude gathered to Him; and He was by the sea. [NKJV]
Some further information:
When the Gadarenes, where He had healed the demoniac, desired from the Christ that He should leave their country, He did not stay to trouble them any longer, but passed over again, by ship, in the same way as He had come, back to the other side (Mark 5:21), and there were much people gathering unto Him.
Note that if there are some that reject the Christ, there are still others that gladly receive Him, and bid Him welcome.
A despised gospel will cross the water, and go where it will have a better reception.
Much people gathered unto him
who “gladly received Him; for they were all waiting for Him” ( Luke 8:40 ).
The abundant teaching earlier that day ( Mark 4:1 ff, and Matthew 13 ) had only whetted the people’s appetite: and disappointed, as would seem, that He had left them in the evening to cross the lake, they remained hanging around at the beach, having got a hint, probably through some of His disciples, that He would be back.
Perhaps they even witnessed at a distance the sudden calming of the tempest. Our Lord’s popularity was now fast rising.
Now let us reflect on this
Jesus has been in the land of the Gadarenes, but He turned out not to be welcome in that area. Now He is returning to the neighborhood of Capernaum, and apparently He is welcome there. A great crowd of people is there waiting for Him, and as soon as He has set foot on land, He is surrounded by the crowd.
- What moves them?
- Why are they looking forward to Jesus’ coming?
- Is that from a genuine faith?
- Did the belief that Jesus is the Messiah arise?
That would have been wonderful. Imagine a great crowd of people with a sincere longing for salvation, waiting for the Lord Jesus! But unfortunately there is no basis for this conclusion. Later, Jesus will have to say of the people of this region: “Woe to you Capernaum, woe to Chorazin, woe to you Bethsaida …”
No, although there is a great crowd of people around Jesus, there is no evidence that there has been a revival among those people. There interest is only based on curiosity.
What is it with you, that pulls you to Jesus?
I hope more than just curiosity.
And now? Is Jesus going to send those people away?
No, He will begin to perform miracles again before their eyes.
He is still seeking their salvation. Their true conversion.
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