6:14 Now King Herod heard this, for Jesus’ name had become known. Some were saying, “John the baptizer has been raised from the dead, and because of this, miraculous powers are at work in him.” 15 Others said, “He is Elijah.” Others said, “He is a prophet, like one of the prophets from the past.” 16 But when Herod heard this, he said, “John, whom I beheaded, has been raised!” 17 For Herod himself had sent men, arrested John, and bound him in prison on account of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because Herod had married her. 18 For John had repeatedly told Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” 19 So Herodias nursed a grudge against him and wanted to kill him. But she could not 20 because Herod stood in awe of John and protected him, since he knew that John was a righteous and holy man. When Herod heard him, he was thoroughly baffled, and yet he liked to listen to John.

21 But a suitable day came, when Herod gave a banquet on his birthday for his court officials, military commanders, and leaders of Galilee. 22 When his daughter Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his dinner guests. The king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you want and I will give it to you.” 23 He swore to her, “Whatever you ask I will give you, up to half my kingdom.” 24 So she went out and said to her mother, “What should I ask for?” Her mother said, “The head of John the baptizer.” 25 Immediately she hurried back to the king and made her request: “I want the head of John the Baptist on a platter immediately.” 26 Although it grieved the king deeply, he did not want to reject her request because of his oath and his guests. 27 So the king sent an executioner at once to bring John’s head, and he went and beheaded John in prison. 28 He brought his head on a platter and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. 29 When John’s disciples heard this, they came and took his body and placed it in a tomb.

30 Then the apostles gathered around Jesus and told him everything they had done and taught. 31 He said to them, “Come with me privately to an isolated place and rest a while” (for many were coming and going, and there was no time to eat). 32 So they went away by themselves in a boat to some remote place. 33 But many saw them leaving and recognized them, and they hurried on foot from all the towns and arrived there ahead of them. 34 As Jesus came ashore he saw the large crowd, and he had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he taught them many things.

35 When it was already late, his disciples came to him and said, “This is an isolated place and it is already very late. 36 Send them away so that they can go into the surrounding countryside and villages and buy something for themselves to eat.” 37 But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said, “Should we go and buy bread for 200 silver coins and give it to them to eat?” 38 He said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” When they found out, they said, “Five—and two fish.” 39 Then he directed them all to sit down in groups on the green grass. 40 So they reclined in groups of hundreds and fifties. 41 He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. He gave them to his disciples to serve the people, and he divided the two fish among them all. 42 They all ate and were satisfied, 43 and they picked up the broken pieces and fish that were left over, 12 baskets full. 44 Now there were 5,000 men who ate the bread.