THE BIBLE ISN’T STANDUP COMEDY. But it’s close, from time to time.
Here’s a time.
The disciples have already seen Jesus manage, somehow, to feed 5,000 men and others with what might compare to five Subway sandwiches.
Sometime later, as Mark reports, they watch him feed 4,000 people with the rough equivalent of seven Subway sandwiches.
Almost immediately after that, they get in a boat to sail across the lake called the Sea of Galilee.
Here’s what follows, and it reads like comedy to me. I’m excerpting the text from the Casual English Bible’s paraphrase of the Gospel of Mark, which I just released in a beta edition this week.
Disciples worry that they forgot to bring bread
“The disciples forgot to bring bread with them when they got into the boat for the trip.
As they sailed across the lake Jesus warned his disciples, ‘Keep your eyes open. You’ve got to watch out for the Pharisees and Herod, and for the yeast they produce that permeates everything.’
But all the disciples could talk about was the fact that no one brought bread.
Jesus knew what they were talking about. So he said, ‘Guys, come on, why are you talking about bread you don’t have? Don’t you get what’s going on? Are your heads really that thick?
You have eyeballs, don’t you? Why can’t you see? You have ears, don’t you? Why can’t you hear? And one more thing, what happened to your memory?
Let me ask you guys something. When I fed 5,000 with five loaves of bread, how many baskets of leftovers did we have?’ They said, ‘Twelve.’
When I fed the crowd of 4,000 with seven loaves of bread, how many baskets of leftovers did we have then?’ They said, ‘Seven.’
Then Jesus said, ‘After all of this, you still don’t have any idea about what’s going on here?'” Mark 8:14-21 Casual English Bible
Got an eye for proofreading?
I just released an unproofed beta edition of the Gospel of Mark. It most certainly has typos, and possibly misplaced footnotes and verses.
If you’ve got an eye for catching mistakes like these, I’d welcome a few folks looking over my shoulder at this. I could offer you a signed copy of a book of mine, if that’s any minor enticement.
Like maps about Jesus?
If you’d like to see some of the best 3D-style maps I’ve done so far, here’s where you can check out the maps I just released for the Atlas of Mark.
If you’d like a copy of the Leader’s Guide & Atlas I released for the Gospel of Mark, here’s the link:
 8:14. If Jesus had been in the area of Magdala, it would have been about seven miles (11 km) across the lake to where he landed at Bethsaida.
 8:17. More commonly translated as “hardened hearts.” That’s a phrase Mark used to describe the enemies of Jesus (3:5). But he used it again to describe the disciples (6:52).
 8:18. Jesus is quoting Jeremiah 5:21.