Elisha’s Feeding of a Hundred Men as a Prototype of the Eucharist

In 2 Kings 4 a man from Ba’al-shal’ishah brings to Elisha twenty loaves of barely made of the first fruits of the earth.  Elisha instructs the man to place the twenty loaves before a hundred men to eat.  The man is concerned that twenty loaves will not satisfy the hundred.  But Elisha responds, “Give them to men, that they may eat, for thus says the Lord, ‘They shall eat and has some left.’”  The men ate, and had some left, as the Lord had promised.

Elisha’s feeding of the a hundred men with a twenty loaves of barley prefigures Jesus’ feeding of 4,000 in Matthew 14-15 with seven loaves of bread and a few small fish and 5,000 in John 6 with five barley loaves and two fish.  After feeding of 4,000 men (not counting women and children) with seven loaves of bread and a few fish, Jesus’ disciples collected seven baskets full of the broken pieces left over; and after feeding 5,000 they collected twelve baskets of fragments from the five barley loaves.

Both Jesus’ and Elisha’s miracles are prototypes of ultimate mystery of Christianity, the Eucharist.

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