James 1:22-23

But become makers of the message - and not just hearers misleading yourselves
For if anyone is a hearer of the message and not a maker
he is like a man assessing the face of his 'Genesis' in a mirror [Jm.1:22-23]

Please note: Strict implementation of HTML prohibits the display of 8-bit Greek characters from the 'Symbol' font, as still used on this site to display unaccented Greek characters. Users of Internet Explorer should expect no problems but users of Firefox 3.x may need to install the 'Web Page Fixer +' add-on available here or here before the Greek text will display as intended.

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then you may also like to read:

  Why Call Me God? : The Gospel Seen with a Single Eye  

published by Capabel Press in September 2009.

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at the time they were first composed.

The riddles of Greek scripture are soon unravelled to expose the devastating plot
which must have been familiar to the Gnostic authors.

Analysis then shows that the deeply challenging message of the gospels
is not what the Christian churches say. It is something very different…
and now explained in this groundbreaking book.

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ISBN: 978 0 9562057 0 4

Chapter 3 : Bread and Fish : The 'Feeding of the 5000/4000' Analysed

Copyright Notice
As the basis for my work I have used the Nestlé-Aland 26th Edition Greek text. Copyright on this is reserved as follows :
..... Novum Testamentum Graece, Nestlé-Aland 26th edition (c)1979, Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, Stuttgart;
..... The Greek New Testament, 3rd edition (c) 1975, United Bible Societies, London
This is the Greek text underlying most modern English translations since 1881, including the New American Standard and New International Versions. Certain words within the Nestlé text proper are enclosed in square brackets [ ] or double brackets [[ ]]. These reflect those places where the critical text editors consider the inclusion or omission of such text to be in question.
This text is only available for NON-COMMERCIAL personal/scholarly and educational use.

I have also used the CATSS LXX editions of the Septuagint Old Testament prepared by the TLG (Thesaurus Linguae Graecae) Project directed by T. Brunner at the University of California, Irvine and made available through the Center for Computer Analysis of Texts (CCAT) at the University of Pennsylvania 'for the use of students, teachers and scholars in study and education contexts'.
This text is only available for NON-COMMERCIAL personal/scholarly and educational use.

Unless otherwise noted, the remainder of what is presented in this document is my original work. Copyright on this is reserved as follows :
..... Authentic Christianity, 4th edition : (c) 2001 - 2004, Target Technical, York, UK
All rights are reserved - except that this text is made available without charge for NON-COMMERCIAL personal/scholarly and educational use.

3.1 Introduction
Perhaps you may be familiar with the gospel story known frequently by this title : 'The Feeding of the 5000' - or sometimes : 'The Multiplication of the Loaves' (which is misleading, for in fact loaves are never mentioned). It is repeated (with some variation) in all four of the Christian gospels. Then it is duplicated - in a variant form - in the two gospels of Mark and of Matthew. In this second form it is known as : 'The Feeding of the 4000'.

Now this story is repeated six times - which is interesting for the attributes of the number '6'. It is the only number incorporated anomalously in the table of Greek numerals (see Table 1 below) - which conventionally were represented simply by using the characters of the Greek alphabet. But for this anomaly it should have been represented by the alphabet character 'z' (the sixth in the alphabet series). Then it was the number associated in the Kaballah (Hebrew mystical/mathematical tradition) with the sun, an object of worship for certain religions. It was also that number which, repeated in three decades, was openly declared at Rv.13:18 to be 'ton ariqmon tou qhriou' (the number of the beast = '666'). I do not suggest that six-fold presentation necessarily has significance here : but let us simply note the point before passing on.

Now it is widely recognised that the authors of scripture use the technique of repetition to draw attention to something they wish to emphasise. It may perhaps be likened to my habit of underlining something in the text. On this basis many over the centuries have paid particular attention to these 'feeding' stories - and over the centuries many explanations have been offered. Suggestions have been made as to the ritual significance - and as to the numerical significance - of the recorded details. But I think there may be a more exact and specific significance to these stories than most of us realise - and that this may provide a key which assists in the interpretation of the remaining texts of the gospel. It is this which I hope to draw out in this chapter.

It is widely held that the gospel of Mark may have been the first completed of the four. It is also the shortest, being the least elaborated. So I shall analyse first the stories in Mark, using them as a 'base case'. Then I shall consider aspects of the stories in the other gospels as variations upon those set out in Mark. By this means I hope to cover what is significant without undue repetition.

3.2 Technical Matters concerning Presentation
The source text for these stories is in Greek. My analysis will be performed in that language. This is the only way you will be able to see what has been done by those who set out the stories for you - for it cannot be seen in any translation to another language.

For the New Testament I shall use as a source the Nestlé Aland (NA26) Greek text : for the Old Testament, the Septuagint (LXX) Greek. If I write using HyperText Mark-up Language (HTML) then those reading using a web browser should be able to see Greek text displayed in colour using the 'symbol' font. You will not see the Greek accentuation - for although it is possible to display this on a computer screen, many readers may not be able to do this. I shall use red text to emphasise features of particular significance. I shall work in Greek as I must - but provide 'literal' translations to English.

I shall not be using the lower case terminal 'S' in the Greek font. A word such as 'artoV' (bread) will therefore appear as 'artos'. I have a particular reason for this - as may become clear in due course. I hope it will not cause you difficulty. Keep in mind that when (in antiquity) the upper case characters were used to inscribe these texts, no such distinction was necessary.

In antiquity it was conventional for the alphabet characters to serve also as numerals. To follow certain points explained in this paper you will need to appreciate this. Table 1 shows the numeric values conventionally assigned to the characters of the Greek alphabet. The number '6' is represented by the lower case character 'stigma', the Greek terminal S [thanks to Dr. David Parker of Birmingham University who first told me this]. Stigma was the brand mark put upon a slave or criminal. Thus it may have a sinister connotation.

a b g d e z h q
1 2 3 4 5 7 8 9
i k l m n x o p
10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80
r s t u f c y w V
100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 6

Table 1

Table 2 shows the English equivalents to the Greek characters.

a b g d e z h q
a b g d e z ê th
i k l m n x o p
i c l m n x o p
r s t u f c y w V
r s t y ph ch ps ô s

Table 2

3.3 Some Clues in Matthew 13
Before turning to the 'feeding' stories, I would like to take a quick look at Matthew chapter 13. This is a most revealing text. We hear echoed from the 'call of Isaiah' (Is.6:9) :

"With hearing, you will hear but not understand.
Seeing, you will see but not perceive".

Then we hear the 'sower' stories - and we learn about 'o speiras' (the one sowing @ Mt.13:39) who is declared to be 'o ecqros' (the enemy) alias 'o diabolos' (the devil).

He sows 'zizania' (darnel/tares) whilst 'the people are asleep'. Here he is doing it @ Mt.13:25 :

40N 13 25 en de tw kaqeudein tous anqrwpous hlqen autou o ecqros kai epespeiren zizania ana meson tou sitou kai aphlqen
40N 13 25 And in 'sleeping the men', there came from him the enemy - and he sowed zizania in the midst of the wheat and went away

'zizania' is an artefact word (absent from the Greek lexicon) - and if you are observant you will know that it is the only word in the entire New Testament (NT) to have two character z's in it. Of course, that's it! 'speiras' (the one sowing) has sowed this stuff in the very text you are reading - and it is still growing there to this day. 'z' is the second least used character in the NT (incidence 0.23%) : it is by this that the 'zizania' can be recognised so readily.

Addendum at 15th March 2005 :

Abram was eighty six years (old), when Hagar bore Ishmael to Abram [LXX Gn.16:16]. Notice that 86 is the ariqmos (number value) of 'zizania'

= 7 + 10 + 7 + 1 + 50 + 10 + 1 = 86.

To see a histogram plot of the alphabet character frequency of occurrence in the Greek New Testament, click here

Then, if you are familiar with the numeric values conventionally assigned to the characters of the Greek alphabet (Table 1) , you may even realise that 'o speiras' (the one sowing @ Mt.13:39) has ariqmos (number value)

= 70 + 200 + 80 + 5 + 10 + 100 + 1 + 200 = 666
... equal to 'exakosioi exhkonta ex'
... that is 'six hundred and sixty six'.

Now this is the only 'person' overtly identified in the NT texts who has this 'number value' : '666'. As such he/she meets the specification given at Rv.13:18 :

Addendum at 15th March 2005 :

66N 13 18 wde h sofia estin o ecwn noun yhfisatw ton ariqmon tou qhriou ariqmoV gar anqrwpou estin kai o ariqmoV autou exakosioi exhkonta ex
66N 13 18 Here is wisdom. The one having an intellect, let him calculate the number of the beast - for it is the number of a person and his number (is) six hundred sixty six.

But there is another 'person', originating in the OT texts and yet remaining present in the NT, who has this 'number value' : '666'. It is the accusative singular 'pleuran' (the rib which 'God' takes from Adam) = 80 + 30 + 5 + 400 + 100 + 1 + 50 = 666.

At LXX Gn.2:22 it is the 'lord god' who builds this rib into a woman - and brings her to Adam.

The word is used fivefold in the NT - at Jn.19:34, 20:20, 20:25, 20:27, Ac.12:7.

Then the numeric adverb 'pentakis' (fivefold) also has ariqmos = 666 [ and perhaps you glimpsed 'kain' (Cain) concealed there ? ] - whilst 'eptakis' (sevenfold) has ariqmos = 616. Now this is most interesting. For not only are five and seven the respective counts of pieces of 'bread' in the stories of the feeding of the 5000 and the 4000 which feature six times in the four gospels, but the number '616' is a found substituted for '666' in the Greek text of certain extant copies of the 'Book of Revelation' [Rv.13:18]. Then was this variation deliberate - and what was it intended to tell us ?

Addendum at 15th March 2005 :

Interestingly the nominative singular for a rib is 'pleura', in Greek a feminine noun.

80 + 30 + 5 + 400 + 100 + 1 = 616 - so this again may account for the textual variant of '616' at Rv.13:18.

However I digress, for this is what I want to quote :

40N 13 33 allhn parabolhn elalhsen autois omoia estin h basileia twn ouranwn zumh hn labousa gunh enekruyen eis aleurou sata tria ews ou ezumwqh olon
40N 13 33 He spoke another parable to them. "The kingdom of the heavens is like leaven which, taking, a woman encrypted in three measures of meal - until it was all leavened".

Comment: Now can you make out the z.i.z.a.n.i.a encrypted there within the very Greek text which refers to 'encryption' - scattered in reverse order, perhaps by 'o speiras' (the sower) ? Such 'zizania' can of course be found at intervals throughout the NT texts. This is quite typical of the way that scripture in 'encrypted' - but a simple example here as part of a scheme of 'built-in teaching'.

Encryption is a technical term which refers to the incorporation of a first message into a second message in such a way that only the second message is immediately evident. But one familiar with the method of encryption is able to extract the first message. This is neatly exemplified in this verse with the z.i.z.a.n.i.a.

Those in military or diplomatic circles may use encryption even today to convey a message intended to remain obscure to anyone who happens to overhear it. Then a secure web site [https:] depends for its security upon encryption techniques. Those practised in the art will avoid excessive repetition within the concealed message - for repetition makes it much easier to break the encryption key. This was done with the German military 'Enigma' codes in the period 1935 - 1945. The German weather reports were encrypted - as also were messages of great military significance. But the weather reports were naturally repetitious - a factor which frequently contributed to the breaking of the code. Within our scripture too there is frequent repetition, clearly intentional : the three synoptic gospels repeat many key themes with only minor variation. To assist us even more, explicit exemplification is frequently added, with many clues left lying about in the literal text. But are we 'asleep' as well?

40N 13 34 tauta panta elalhsen o ihsous en parabolais tois oclois kai cwris parabolhs ouden elalei autois
40N 13 34 All these things Jesus spoke within parables to the crowds : and apart from a parable he spoke nothing to them,
Note: This seems to suggest that encryption is ubiquitous within the gospels? All is written with a hidden message?

40N 13 35 opws plhrwqh to rhqen dia tou profhtou legontos anoixw en parabolais to stoma mou ereuxomai kekrummena apo katabolhs [kosmou]
40N 13 35 So that it might be fulfilled which was spoken through the prophet, saying, "I will open my mouth in parables : I will utter things hidden from the foundation [of the world]"
Note: I think 'the foundation of the world' refers to the 'creation story' in Genesis - which is the first place where 'things have been hidden'. To look here may prove worthwhile - as I suspect it is within Genesis that these encryption methods have been first established and deployed. The version to look at is perhaps the Septuagint Greek (LXX) - created in Alexandria, Egypt around 250BCE.

3.4 The 'Feeding of the 5000' ( Mark 6:34-45 )
Here is the first story. The translation to English is deliberately highly literal - for it is vital we follow as closely as possible what the authors actually say ...

41N 6 34 kai exelqwn eiden polun oclon kai esplagcnisqh ep autous oti hsan ws probata mh econta poimena kai hrxato didaskein autous polla
41N 6 34 And, going out, he saw a large crowd and he had compassion on them because they were like sheep not having a shepherd - and he began to teach them many things.

41N 6 35 kai hdh wras pollhs genomenhs proselqontes autw oi maqhtai autou elegon oti erhmos estin o topos kai hdh wra pollh
41N 6 35 And (with the) hour becoming advanced, his learners, coming to him, said "It is a desert, this place - and already the hour (is) advanced.

41N 6 36 apoluson autous ina apelqontes eis tous kuklw agrous kai kwmas agoraswsin eautois ti fagwsin
41N 6 36 Send them away - so that, going away into the surrounding fields and villages, they may buy themselves something to eat."

41N 6 37 o de apokriqeis eipen autois dote autois umeis fagein kai legousin autw apelqontes agoraswmen dhnariwn diakosiwn artous kai dwsomen autois fagein
41N 6 37 But he answered, saying to them "You give them (something) to eat." They asked him, "Going away, shall we buy bread with two hundred denarii - and give them (something) to eat?"

41N 6 38 o de legei autois posous artous ecete upagete idete kai gnontes legousin pente kai duo icquas
41N 6 38 But he said to them "How many breads do you have? Go and see." And, knowing, they said "Five - and two fish."

41N 6 39 kai epetaxen autois anaklinai pantas sumposia sumposia epi tw clwrw cortw
41N 6 39 And he commanded them all to lie - party by party - upon the green grass.

41N 6 40 kai anepesan prasiai prasiai kata ekaton kai kata penthkonta
41N 6 40 They sat down bed by bed, by a hundred and by fifty.

41N 6 41 kai labwn tous pente artous kai tous duo icquas anableyas eis ton ouranon euloghsen kai kateklasen tous artous kai edidou tois maqhtais [autou] ina paratiqwsin autois kai tous duo icquas emerisen pasin
41N 6 41 And taking the five breads and the two fish, looking up into heaven, he blessed and broke the breads : and he gave to [his] learners so that they would set before them - and the two fish he divided amongst all.

41N 6 42 kai efagon pantes kai ecortasqhsan
41N 6 42 And they all ate, and were filled.

41N 6 43 kai hran klasmata dwdeka kofinwn plhrwmata kai apo twn icquwn
41N 6 43 And they took up twelve fragments full of [small] baskets - and from the fish.

41N 6 44 kai hsan oi fagontes [tous artous] pentakiscilioi andres
41N 6 44 And those eating [the breads] were five thousand men.

41N 6 45 kai euqus hnagkasen tous maqhtas autou embhnai eis to ploion kai proagein eis to peran pros bhqsaidan ews autos apoluei ton oclon
41N 6 45 Immediately he made his learners get into the boat and go ahead to the other side, to Bethsaida, while he sent away the crowd.

Now we may perhaps summarise the scenario like this :

Summarising again :

This is the only verse in the four gospels where the word 'cortos' (grass; hay) is used in conjunction with the word 'clwros' (green). Otherwise they occur together in the NT only at Rv.8:7 (where it is all to be burned up, suggesting that it is a token of evil) and at Rv.9:4 .

But remember that 'clue' at Mt.13:35? 'I will utter things hidden from the foundation of the world'. If we look in Genesis we find 'corton clwron' (green grass) at Gn.1:30 - where it is prescribed as 'food for all the wild beasts, the birds, and all the creeping creatures which creep upon the earth'. Once again, this is slightly sinister, for 'ta qhria' (the wild beasts) and 'o ofis' (the serpent) are most certainly presented in Genesis as tokens of evil. The 'serpent' is satan in disguise? Then we find 'corton clwron' again at Gn.2:5 (the Yahwistic creation).

So let us look at the creation story : can we spot two of any textual entity which in some way resembles a fish? The word used for a fish is 'icqus' : this is not in modern usage, an unusual word distinguished by its digram (character pair) 'cq'. Now where have we seen that before? Yes, of course, at Mt.13, where 'o speiras' (the one sowing) is 'o ecqros' (the enemy) alias 'o diabolos' (the devil) and sows 'zizania' (darnel/tares) whilst 'the people are asleep'. So then the 'fish' are connected with the 'enemy'? - because the written words resemble one another - and when spoken they sound like one another?

At the 'Call of Isaiah' [see Chapter 5, Section 5.4] we have : "With hearing, you will hear but not understand. Seeing, you will see but not perceive" (Is.6:9). We are reminded of this several times within the NT. So what hinders my understanding, what hinders my perception? Some form of disguise? Things don't look quite like what they really are, only similar? And what was that teaching about 'fruit' and 'trees'? What kind of 'fruit' derives from what kind of 'tree'? The word for the fruit is not the word for the tree - but it can be similar? Even in English, the fruit of a figtree can be nothing but a fig. The two words are related. One is embedded within the other, as is the seed within the fruit. Is this how it works in scripture? Tree and fruit? Father and son? Enemy and fish? One springs from the other - the latter taking over the role & function of the former?

So looking at the creation story, can we perhaps find 'duo icquas' (two fish) - or 'duo ecqrous' (two enemies)? Well, if you look at Chapter 1 of Genesis, this is what you can find :

At Gn.1:9-13 (Day 3) we have :
01O 1 9 kai eipen o qeos sunacqhtw to udwr to upokatw tou ouranou eis sunagwghn mian kai ofqhtw h xhra kai egeneto outws kai sunhcqh to udwr to upokatw tou ouranou eis tas sunagwgas autwn kai wfqh h xhra
01O 1 9 And God said "Let the water beneath the sky coalesce into one assembly [alt: one synagogue] and let the dry appear" - and it happened thus. And the water beneath the sky coalesced into their assemblies [alt: their synagogues] - and the dry appeared

01O 1 10 kai ekalesen o qeos thn xhran ghn kai ta susthmata twn udatwn ekalesen qalassas kai eiden o qeos oti kalon
01O 1 10 And God called the dry 'earth', and the systems of waters he called 'seas'. And God saw it as good

01O 1 11 kai eipen o qeos blasthsatw h gh botanhn cortou speiron sperma kata genos kai kaq omoiothta kai xulon karpimon poioun karpon ou to sperma autou en autw kata genos epi ths ghs kai egeneto outws
01O 1 11 And God said "Let the earth sprout a grassy plant spreading seed according to (its) kind and variety - and a fruit-bearing tree bearing fruit of which its seed (is) within it, according to (its) kind upon the earth". And it happened like this.

01O 1 12 kai exhnegken h gh botanhn cortou speiron sperma kata genos kai kaq omoiothta kai xulon karpimon poioun karpon ou to sperma autou en autw kata genos epi ths ghs kai eiden o qeos oti kalon
01O 1 12 The earth brought forth a grassy plant spreading seed after its kind and variety - and a fruit-bearing tree bearing fruit of which its seed (is) within it, according to (its) kind upon the earth. And God saw it as good.

01O 1 13 kai egeneto espera kai egeneto prwi hmera trith
01O 1 13 And evening happened - and morning happened (THIRD DAY).

Analysis :
Did you see (in red) the digram 'cq' arising twice within the first verse of this passage (Gn.1:9)? So here perhaps we have what we are looking for. The word in which 'cq' arises here is in both cases derived from the passive tenses of the verb sunagw (to bring together). Then it is the letters 'c' and 'q' which have been 'brought together' ? Then these two instances may be the two 'fish' which 'they found' in the first variant of the story in the gospel attributed to Mark ?

Now we need to identify five 'breads'. But what is a 'bread'? We do not know what they look like. But we may guess that 'bread' too is a digram. In principle there are 576 digrams possible since the Greek alphabet has 24 characters - but in fact only 396 are used in the NT texts. In the Greek text of Gn.1:9-13 (Day 3) there are just 10 digrams which occur exactly five times. These are :

Of these, only 'as' can be derived from the characters of the word 'artos' (bread). So perhaps that is it? Perhaps 'cq' are the two 'fish' and 'as' are the five 'bread'. Then 'eating' is just a metaphor for 'reading in a specially observant manner' - such that you are aware of the existence of digram entities such as this? Then the texts of scripture are 'full of food'? In the source text above I have marked in red the digrams 'cq' and 'as' - and if you look you will see that there are respectively 2 + 5.

Then the remainders when the meal is complete will be the fragments of the words which remain after the digram portion has been 'eaten'. So let us see what fragments remain in this case (Day 3). The words concerned are :


The fragments remaining when the 'fish' and 'bread' are removed are :

The number of fragments is 10, not 12. But then what does it say at Mk.6:43?

It says :
41N 6 43 kai hran klasmata dwdeka kofinwn plhrwmata kai apo twn icquwn
41N 6 43 And there were twelve fragments full of [small] baskets - and from the fish.

We counted 10 fragments - but we did not count the 'fish' itself. If we also count the two cq's (the two 'fish') then we get 10 + 2 = 12. Now this fits Mark's description. But notice that this then implies that the crowd did eat the 'bread' but did not eat the 'fish'. Then if the 'fish' are a token of evil this can make some sense. For possibly 'the crowd' knows that 'the fish' is not good to eat?

Now we may consider the significance of the number '5000'. Within the NT, it is used only in connection with this story.
Here are some of the source texts, two from Mark, one from Matthew :
41N 6 40 kai anepesan prasiai prasiai kata ekaton kai kata penthkonta
41N 6 40 They sat down bed by bed, by a hundred and by fifty.
41N 6 44 kai hsan oi fagontes [tous artous] pentakiscilioi andres
41N 6 44 And those eating [the breads] were five thousand men.
40N 14 21 oi de esqiontes hsan andres wsei pentakiscilioi cwris gunaikwn kai paidiwn
40N 14 21 But those eating were men - about five thousand without women and children.

Perhaps we can say this :

But what about this :

I suspect one of these last 3 suggestions is what we are expected to come up with. If so, this is an excellent joke! If you look at a verse in Matthew placed just before the second variant of the story (Mt.15:30), you will find a list of the attributes of those who 'were brought to him to be healed'. We see :

cwlous tuflous kullous kwfous kai eterous pollous
(lame [2100], blind [1900], mute [1150], deaf [1990], and many others [1991].

And this is not the only place you see them. Some of these characters are also listed at Lk.14:13 and 14:21.

The phrase 'cwris gunaikwn kai paidiwn' (without women and children) appended to the number eating at Mt.14:21 and Mt.15:38 may serve simply to emphasise that the 'missing bodies' are of masculine gender, not feminine/neuter as are the women/children. This then suggests to us that the words to be supplied have endings in -ous, just as they do at Mt.15:30.

3.5 The 'Feeding of the 4000' ( Mark 8:1-9 )
Here is the second story :

41N 8 1 en ekeinais tais hmerais palin pollou oclou ontos kai mh econtwn ti fagwsin proskalesamenos tous maqhtas legei autois
41N 8 1 In those days, (there) being again a large crowd and they not having what they eat, calling the learners, he said to them

41N 8 2 splagcnizomai epi ton oclon oti hdh hmerai treis prosmenousin moi kai ouk ecousin ti fagwsin
41N 8 2 "I have compassion upon the crowd because they remain with me already three days and they do not have what they eat.

41N 8 3 kai ean apolusw autous nhsteis eis oikon autwn ekluqhsontai en th odw kai tines autwn apo makroqen hkasin
41N 8 3 And if I send them away to their house without food, they will fail on the way - and some of them have arrived from afar".

41N 8 4 kai apekriqhsan autw oi maqhtai autou oti poqen toutous dunhsetai tis wde cortasai artwn ep erhmias
41N 8 4 And his learners answered him "Then from where will it be possible - in a place like this - for these to feed on bread over a desert?"

41N 8 5 kai hrwta autous posous ecete artous oi de eipan epta
41N 8 5 And he asked them "How many breads do you have?". But they said "Seven".

41N 8 6 kai paraggellei tw oclw anapesein epi ths ghs kai labwn tous epta artous eucaristhsas eklasen kai edidou tois maqhtais autou ina paratiqwsin kai pareqhkan tw oclw
41N 8 6 And he directed the crowd to recline on the earth - and taking the seven breads, giving thanks he broke (them) and gave them to his learners so that they might serve (them) up, and they served (them) to the crowd.

41N 8 7 kai eicon icqudia oliga kai euloghsas auta eipen kai tauta paratiqenai
41N 8 7 They had a few little fish - and, blessing them, he said to serve these also.

41N 8 8 kai efagon kai ecortasqhsan kai hran perisseumata klasmatwn epta spuridas
41N 8 8 They ate and were (well) fed. And there was a surplus, seven hampers of fragments

41N 8 9 hsan de ws tetrakiscilioi kai apelusen autous
41N 8 9 But there were about four thousand - and he sent them away.

Now we may perhaps note the following :

Now we can look to see whether we can account, on a similar basis as previously, for the details in the second variant of the story in the gospel of Mark, the 'Feeding of the 4000'.

Three days have elapsed - so this time we look at Gn.1:24-31 (Day 6). We have :
01O 1 24 kai eipen o qeos exagagetw h gh yuchn zwsan kata genos tetrapoda kai erpeta kai qhria ths ghs kata genos kai egeneto outws
01O 1 24 And God said, "Let the earth bring forth a living soul after a four-footed kind, and reptiles and wild beasts of the earth after (their) kind" : and it happened like this.

01O 1 25 kai epoihsen o qeos ta qhria ths ghs kata genos kai ta kthnh kata genos kai panta ta erpeta ths ghs kata genos autwn kai eiden o qeos oti kala
01O 1 25 And God made the wild beasts of the earth after (their) kind, and the (pastoral) beasts after (their) kind, and all the reptiles of the earth after their kind. And God saw them as good.

01O 1 26 kai eipen o qeos poihswmen anqrwpon kat eikona hmeteran kai kaq omoiwsin kai arcetwsan twn icquwn ths qalasshs kai twn peteinwn tou ouranou kai twn kthnwn kai pashs ths ghs kai pantwn twn erpetwn twn erpontwn epi ths ghs
01O 1 26 And God said "Let us make a PERSON according to our image and according to likenesses : and let THEM rule over the fish of the sea, over the birds of Heaven, and over the pastoral beasts, and over all the earth - and over all the creeping things which creep upon the earth."

01O 1 27 kai epoihsen o qeos ton anqrwpon kat eikona qeou epoihsen auton arsen kai qhlu epoihsen autous
01O 1 27 And God made the PERSON. According to (the) image of a god he made HIM. Male and female he made THEM.

01O 1 28 kai huloghsen autous o qeos legwn auxanesqe kai plhqunesqe kai plhrwsate thn ghn kai katakurieusate auths kai arcete twn icquwn ths qalasshs kai twn peteinwn tou ouranou kai pantwn twn kthnwn kai pashs ths ghs kai pantwn twn erpetwn twn erpontwn epi ths ghs
01O 1 28 And God blessed THEM, saying "Grow and multiply and fill the earth and LORD over it it. And rule (over) the fish of the sea and (over) the birds of Heaven - and (over) all the pastoral beasts and (over) all the earth - and (over) all the creeping things which creep upon the earth."

01O 1 29 kai eipen o qeos idou dedwka umin pan corton sporimon speiron sperma o estin epanw pashs ths ghs kai pan xulon o ecei en eautw karpon spermatos sporimou umin estai eis brwsin
01O 1 29 And God said "Look, I have given YOU [pl.] every grass spreading seed to propagate which is above all the earth - and every tree which has within itself fruit (having) seed to propagate. For you it will be for food.

01O 1 30 kai pasi tois qhriois ths ghs kai pasi tois peteinois tou ouranou kai panti erpetw tw erponti epi ths ghs o ecei en eautw yuchn zwhs panta corton clwron eis brwsin kai egeneto outws
01O 1 30 And to every wild beast of the earth, and to every bird of Heaven, and to every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth (and) which has within it the soul of life, (I have given) every (kind of) GREEN GRASS for food." And it happened like this.

01O 1 31 kai eiden o qeos ta panta osa epoihsen kai idou kala lian kai egeneto espera kai egeneto prwi hmera ekth
01O 1 31 And God saw everything that he had made, and, look, (it was) too good. And evening happened - and morning happened (SIXTH DAY).

Analysis :
Now, as with the text for Day 3, this passage also contains two of the digram 'cq' (so-called 'fish'). In the second variant of the Marcan story, when the 'learners' are asked "How many breads do you have?" [Mk.8:5], fish are not actually mentioned. But two verses further on [Mk.8:7] we hear that 'eicon icqudia oliga' (they had a few little fish). The word 'icqudia' is the diminutive of 'icqus'. Now it seems likely that the use of the diminutive is significant : we may guess that 'little fish' refers to instances of the digram 'cq' occuring as it does here. By contrast I consider in Chapter 6 [Section 6.3] what may be meant by the term 'big fish' as used at Jn.21:11.

Anyway, the point is that once again we appear to have two 'fish' here in this passage. Then in the Greek text of Gn.1:24-31 (Day 6) there are just 4 digrams which occur exactly seven times. These are :

As with the first variant of the story, only 'as' can be derived from the characters of the word 'artos' (bread). If we reversed it, 'ra' might count as a candidate to consider - but it was absent from the list of digrams arising five times in the first passage which, I think, disqualifies it. So once again it looks as though 'as' may be what is meant by 'bread' - and as though the statement at Mk.8:5 'oi de eipan epta' (but they said "Seven") could indeed point to this text for Day 6 of the creation sequence in 'Genesis'. If not, it is certainly an intriguing coincidence.

As before, the remainders when the meal is complete should be the fragments of the words which remain after the digram portion has been 'eaten'. So let us see what fragments remain in this case (Day 6). The words concerned are :


The fragments remaining when all the 'fish' and 'bread' has been eaten are :


The number of fragments is 18, not 7. This is not what we wanted. But wait a moment : we have made a procedural error here, for in this second Marcan story there is no indication that the 'fish' were broken - and indeed (although they were served out) 'the crowd' may not have eaten the fish at all. Let's try again on the basis (as is stated at Mk.8:6) that it was just the 'seven breads' which were broken. Now the words concerned are :


and the fragments remaining when the seven 'breads' have been eaten up are :


There are 14 of them. But then remember that in the first story there were stated to be '12 fragments' : but in this story there are stated to be 'seven hampers of fragments'. Once again it would appear that we did not listen sufficiently carefully to the gospel. We should be counting whole hampers of fragments, not individual fragments as before. Now if we guess that a single 'hamper' collects all the fragments from a single word, then of course we have just seven hampers each filled with fragments (for at the outset there were just seven words which had 'bread' in them). So the constraint at Mk.8:8 is satisfied - but only when we pay truly careful attention to the story!

What is written in the book of Isaiah ?

"With hearing they will hear but not understand. Seeing, they will see but not perceive"? (Is.6:9).

At Ac.28:23-28 we may pay careful attention to what was said in Rome :
44N 28 23 taxamenoi de autw hmeran hlqon pros auton eis thn xenian pleiones ois exetiqeto diamarturomenos thn basileian tou qeou *peiqwn* te autous peri tou ihsou apo te tou nomou mwusews kai twn profhtwn apo prwi ews *esperas*
44N 28 23 And having appointed with him a day, they came to him in the lodging. Mostly for them, he set out to give witness to the kingdom of God, *persuading* them about Jesus from both the law of Moses and from the prophets, from morning to *evening*
Note: In Greek, a python is '*puqwn*' and '*speiras*' is a sower (the enemy = the devil at Mt.13:33). So Paul could be quite persuasive 'about Jesus' - when the need arose. Remember Isaiah 6:9? "With hearing you will hear, and not understand : Seeing, you will see and not perceive". But perhaps your hearing and sight are improving ?

44N 28 24 kai oi men epeiqonto tois legomenois oi de hpistoun
44N 28 24 And some were persuaded by that being said, whilst others disbelieved

44N 28 25 asumfwnoi de ontes pros allhlous apeluonto eipontos tou paulou rhma en oti kalws to pneuma to agion elalhsen dia hsaiou tou profhtou pros tous pateras umwn
44N 28 25 And being at variance with one another, they departed, making to Paul one remark - that the holy spirit spoke well through Isaiah the prophet to your fathers

44N 28 26 legwn poreuqhti pros ton laon touton kai eipon akoh akousete kai ou mh sunhte kai blepontes bleyete kai ou mh idhte
44N 28 26 Saying 'Go to this people and say "With hearing, you will hear and not understand : and seeing, you will see and not perceive"

44N 28 27 epacunqh gar h kardia tou laou toutou kai tois wsin barews hkousan kai tous ofqalmous autwn ekammusan mhpote idwsin tois ofqalmois kai tois wsin akouswsin kai th kardia sunwsin kai epistreywsin kai iasomai autous
44N 28 27 For the heart of this people has grown fat. With their ears they heard heavily and they half-closed their eyes - lest they perceive with the eyes and hear with the ears - and understand with their heart - and turn back - and I should heal them' [Is.6:9-10]
Note: Do you see a 'fattened' fish there [c..q] ? And a piece of bread [] ?

44N 28 28 gnwston oun estw umin oti tois eqnesin apestalh touto to swthrion tou qeou autoi kai akousontai
44N 28 28 Then let it be known to you that this, the salvation of God, was sent to the nations [Ps.67:2] : they also will hear

Now we may consider the significance of the number '4000'. Apart from this story of the 'Feeding of the 4000', the number '4000' appears in the NT only at Ac.21:38 :
44N 21 37 mellwn te eisagesqai eis thn parembolhn o paulos legei tw ciliarcw ei exestin moi eipein ti pros se o de efh ellhnisti ginwskeis
44N 21 37 As he was about to be brought into the barracks, Paul said to the kiliarch (lit: 'ruler of 1000') "Is it permitted to me to say something to you?". He said "Do you know Greek?
44N 21 38 ouk ara su ei o aiguptios o pro toutwn twn hmerwn anastatwsas kai exagagwn eis thn erhmon tous tetrakiscilious andras twn sikariwn
44N 21 38 Are you not then the Egyptian, who before these days stirred up and led out into the desert the four thousand men of the 'sikarioi'?"
Note: 'sikarioi' were extreme nationalist zealots, perhaps 'terrorists' in modern parlance. But notice that the word 'sikariwn' is a single-word anagram source for the name 'kain' (Cain). And then it recalls the name of 'ioudas iskariwq' (Judas Iscariot), the 'one out of the twelve' who (in the stories of the gospels) appears to consort with Jesus to achieve his betrayal.

Here are some of the source texts, one from Mark, one from Matthew :
41N 8 9 hsan de ws tetrakiscilioi kai apelusen autous
41N 8 9 But there were about four thousand - and he sent them away.

40N 15 38 oi de esqiontes hsan tetrakiscilioi andres cwris gunaikwn kai paidiwn
40N 15 38 But those eating were four thousand - men without women and children.

Perhaps we can say this :

But what about this :

3.6 Going back over some details of the 'Feeding' Stories
Now that we have realised that 'cq' may be what is meant by 'fish' - and 'as' may be what is meant by 'bread' - we can go back over the two 'feeding' stories to see whether anything else becomes clear.

First story :

Second story :

3.7 The Pharisees (who remain blind) & the Boat Stories
Here is the passage from the gospel of Mark which follows immediately upon the second 'feeding' story. If your sight has improved at all recently you may be able to see in this text what others still do not. Watch out in particular for concealed breadas ] and for mannaman ] (the latter originates in Exodus) :

41N 8 10 kai euqus embas eis to ploion meta twn maqhtwn autou hlqen eis ta merh dalmanouqa
41N 8 10 And immediately he got into the boat with his learners : they came into the parts (of) Dalmanoutha.

41N 8 11 kai exhlqon oi farisaioi kai hrxanto suzhtein autw zhtountes par autou shmeion apo tou ouranou peirazontes auton
41N 8 11 And the Pharisees came out and began to question him, seeking from him a sign from heaven, testing him.

41N 8 12 kai anastenaxas tw pneumati autou legei ti h genea auth zhtei shmeion amhn legw umin ei doqhsetai th genea tauth shmeion
41N 8 12 And, sighing deeply in his spirit, he said, "Why does this generation seek a sign? Truly, I am telling you if a sign will be given to this generation."

41N 8 13 kai afeis autous palin embas aphlqen eis to peran
41N 8 13 And he left them : again getting aboard, he departed to the other side.

41N 8 14 kai epelaqonto labein artous kai ei mh ena arton ouk eicon meq eautwn en tw ploiw
41N 8 14 They forgot to take bread - and, except for one (piece of) bread, they did not have (any) in the boat with them.

41N 8 15 kai diestelleto autois legwn orate blepete apo ths zumhs twn farisaiwn kai ths zumhs hrwdou
41N 8 15 He charged them, saying, "Look out and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod."

41N 8 16 kai dielogizonto pros allhlous oti artous ouk ecousin
41N 8 16 And they reasoned with one another that they did not have (any) bread.

41N 8 17 kai gnous legei autois ti dialogizesqe oti artous ouk ecete oupw noeite oude suniete pepwrwmenhn ecete thn kardian umwn
41N 8 17 And, knowing, he said to them, "Why are you reasoning that you do not have (any) bread? Do you not yet perceive - nor understand? You have your heart petrified.

41N 8 18 ofqalmous econtes ou blepete kai wta econtes ouk akouete kai ou mnhmoneuete
41N 8 18 Having eyes, do you not see? Having ears, do you not hear? And do you not remember?

41N 8 19 ote tous pente artous eklasa eis tous pentakiscilious posous kofinous klasmatwn plhreis hrate legousin autw dwdeka
41N 8 19 When I broke the five breads among the five thousand, how many (small) baskets full of fragments did you take up?" They said to him "Twelve."

41N 8 20 ote tous epta eis tous tetrakiscilious poswn spuridwn plhrwmata klasmatwn hrate kai legousin [autw] epta
41N 8 20 "When the seven amongst the four thousand, how many hampers filled with fragments did you take up?" And they said (to him) "Seven."

41N 8 21 kai elegen autois oupw suniete
41N 8 21 And he said to them, "Do you not yet understand?"

41N 8 22 kai ercontai eis bhqsaidan kai ferousin autw tuflon kai parakalousin auton ina autou ayhtai
41N 8 22 He came to Bethsaida and they brought to him a blind man - and asked him whether he would touch him

41N 8 23 kai epilabomenos ths ceiros tou tuflou exhnegken auton exw ths kwmhs kai ptusas eis ta ommata autou epiqeis tas ceiras autw ephrwta auton ei ti blepeis
41N 8 23 And, taking the hand of the blind man, he brought him out from the village and, spitting on his eyes, he laid his hands on him. He asked him if he saw anything.

 1  Mk.1:16 amfiballontas casting a two-handed net
 2  Mk.2:19 numfios/numfion bridegroom [ ie. Jesus ]
 3  Mk.2:20 numfios bridegroom [ ie. Jesus ]
 4  Mk.3:18 filippon Philip
 5  Mk.4:20 karpoforousin they bear fruit
 6  Mk.4:38 proskefalaion pillow [lit: for the head]
 7  Mk.6:13 hleifon they annointed
 8  Mk.6:43 kofinwn of baskets
 9  Mk.7:21 fonoi murders
 10  Mk.7:26 surofoinikissa a Syrophoenician
 11  Mk.7:32 ferousin they brought
 12  Mk.8:19 kofinous baskets [ = 12 found ! ]

Table 3

Here we see thoroughly exemplified the anagrammatic and quasi-homophonic 'association' which at Isaiah 6:9-10 is so obviously and explicitly taught (see Chapter 5, Section 5.4).

Now we are beginning to learn what it means to be 'maqhthV' - a student (of scripture).

3.8 Consequences Elsewhere in Scripture
Now that we can recognise them, there are in the canon of the New Testament 6,974 pieces of 'bread' [ 'as' ]. There are also 177 'fish' [ 'cq' ]. In the 'Our Father' prayer we may ask : "Give us this day our daily bread". Do we know what we are asking?

3.9 Contents of 'the sea' : bread, fish, satan and salt
In the accusative singular case, 'thn qalassan' is how we refer to 'the sea'. In the GNT this phrase appears 37 times. It is an anagram source for the word 'satanas', the name of 'satan' - a point which I do not suppose was lost upon the writers of scripture. And (just for the record) the word 'satanas' (which is almost a palindrome) occurs as such 17 times in the nominative case and 19 times in other cases. Moreover it clearly contains 'bread'.

Now this is no accident. From the outset [Gn.1:10], the sea is a token of evil. For it was actually formed by the very 'sunacqhsis' (being brought together) which gave us the two 'fish' 'cq' (at Gn.1:9), found in a deserty place with plenty of green grass (at the beginning of our enquiries in Section 3.4 above).

Moreover there is 'alas' (salt) in the sea. Look, here it is : 'thn qalassan'. In classical Greek the normal word for 'salt' is normally 'als' but in scripture the form 'alas' is used. It appears that the authors must have a purpose in using consistently this alternate form.

Then at Mk.9:50, we have this :
41N 9 50 kalon to alas ean de to alas analon genhtai en tini auto artusete ecete en eautois ala kai eirhneuete en allhlois
41N 9 50 Salt (is) good - but if the salt becomes un-salty, within what will you 'bread' it? Have within yourselves salt, and be at peace in one another."

This is a very cleverly composed verse. And if you have so far stopped short of being convinced by what I have demonstrated in this paper (that 'as' is what is known by the writers of scripture as 'bread'), then you can believe it now. This is how the argument runs :

And does this little riddle not demonstrate conclusively that the digram 'as' is known by the name 'bread'? Perhaps you need to know a little Greek before you grasp the pun - but I feel there can be no doubt about what the teaching is here. Then you will 'have within yourselves 'ala' (notice the use of the accusative case, which has no 'bread' in it). This is deliberate, for you will do well to avoid 'alas' (nominative case here - which does have 'bread' in it). Here you can see how Greek syntax and accidence have a key role to play in the composition of scripture.

Of course, at an ideological level you can also see how it makes sense that the sea should be a token of evil. According to a simple 5-layer imagery for 'Genesis', the earth [ h gh ] is sandwiched between 'the waters above' (the clouds, more or less) and 'the waters below' (the sea). And 'above the clouds' is some kind of heaven - whereas below the sea is 'another kind of heaven' (ie. hell = Gehenna) - and notice that Matthew in particular usually refers to 'the kingdom of the heavens' in the plural, about which be warned because by this the 'kingdom of hell' may be included.

Anyway, it should now be clear that it is 'the sea' which is interposed between earth and hell. Worse still, it is fluid and therefore forms a barrier which is permeable. In the way that these authors think, it seems to follow that what appears from nowhere out of the sea quite probably has come out of hell. And if it looks unfamiliar, large or fierce then it is hellish - and 'fishy' indeed.

For example '153 big fish' at Jn.21:11 is sinister in its import. For 153 is the ariqmos (number value) for 'h magdalhnh' (the Magdalene of the gospels) as well as for 'rebekka' (Rebecca at Gn.24->27). This 'arithmetic translation' (isopsephia) is the first link by which Mary Magdalene is identified with Rebecca - who brings upon herself a curse at Gn.27:13.

This will come as no surprise to anyone who has read Augustine's 'De Doctrina Christiana' (Book 3 : Ch.12:18) and has understood what the good Augustine could not (quite) allow himself to realise. For he puzzles over the significance of the harlot, Mary of Bethany who is found consorting with Jesus [see Mt.26:7; Mk.14:3; Lk.7:38; Jn.12:3]. In the western church and since at least the time of Gregory the Great [d. CE604], this Mary has been identified with the Magdalene [see]. But it would appear that Augustine has not grasped that these incidents are in fact allegory based upon the story of Genesis 27 - nor that the ariqmos of 'bhqania' (Bethany) is 81, the same as that for 'kain' (Cain).

But there is a third and more specific way in which we see that Magdalene is 'Rebecca'. For at Gn.27:11 Jacob is 'smooth like the serpent' - and at Gn.27:16 Rebecca covers his arms and the nakedness of his neck with goat skins as part of a ploy to make him 'hairy' - and so to deceive his father Isaac by means of impersonation. But the 'nakedness of his neck' and the 'smoothness' of Jacob betray that he is the serpent in disguise. And then in the gospels Mary Magdalene (the harlot) performs the equivalent for Jesus - anointing his head [Mt.26:7; Mk.14:3] or wiping his feet with her hair [Lk.7:38; Jn.12:3 : each of these verses is an anagram source for 'exakosioi exhkonta ex' => 666; see Rv.13:18].

By allegory, the gospel story therefore likens Magdalene to Rebecca - and also Jesus to Jacob (and so to the serpent). Thus do the riddles which comprise the pieces of this puzzle fit so neatly together. Who then is the 'Nazarene' ? And what was known by the 'Naassenes', the gnostic sect named for the Hebrew word for a serpent ?

Now at Mk.5:13 we have :
41N 5 13 kai epetreyen autois kai exelqonta ta pneumata ta akaqarta eishlqon eis tous coirous kai wrmhsen h agelh kata tou krhmnou eis thn qalassan ws discilioi kai epnigonto en th qalassh
41N 5 13 And he turned towards them. And coming out, the unclean spirits went into the pigs : and the herd started down the precipice into the sea (about two thousand). And they were drowned in the sea.

Then the pigs descended into the sea because they were (now) vectors for the 'unclean spirits'.

Now some think that 'the road to hell is paved with good intentions'. But in scripture 'the road to hell is undoubtedly via the sea'. This makes Mt.4:13 (which in any case has 'zizania' in it) sound sinister :

40N 4 13 kai katalipwn thn nazara elqwn katwkhsen eis kafarnaoum thn paraqalassian en oriois zaboulwn kai nefqalim
40N 4 13 Leaving Nazareth, he came and lived in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali

Reverting to the Gerasene pigs, the reference to ws discilioi (about two thousand) looks like a significant ariqmos (number value). I cannot yet be sure of its import - but it could refer to :

Anyway, I hope it is clear that this is a highly symbolic story - and not a historical record of any 'real life' event.

I hope too that it is now clear that 'as' is a piece of 'bread' - whilst 'cq' is a 'fish'.

Now there is much more concealed (encrypted) within the gospels - but I expect that already I have risked giving you indigestion - and so I shall break off at this point.

3.10 PostScript
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