|Mark 6:35 And when the day was now far spent, his disciples came unto him, and said, This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed: 36 Send them away, that they may go into the country round about, and into the villages, and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat.||Matt 14:15 And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals.||Luke 9:12 And when the day began to wear away, then came the twelve, and said unto him, Send the multitude away, that they may go into the towns and country round about, and lodge, and get victuals: for we are here in a desert place.||John 6:4 And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh. 5a When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him,|
|Mark 6:37a He answered and said unto them, Give ye them to eat.||Matt 14:16 But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat.||Luke 9:13a But he said unto them, Give ye them to eat.||John 6:5b he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? 6 And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do.|
|Mark 6:37b And they say unto him, Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat?||John 6:7 Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.|
|Mark 6:38 He saith unto them, How many loaves have ye? go and see. And when they knew, they say, Five, and two fishes.||Matt 14:17 And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes.||Luke 9:13b And they said, We have no more but five loaves and two fishes; except we should go and buy meat for all this people.||John 6:8 One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, saith unto him, 9 There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves , and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?|
|Mark 6:39 And he commanded them to make all sit down by companies upon the green grass . 40 And they sat down in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties.||Matt 14:18 He said, Bring them hither to me. 19a And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass,||Luke 9:14 For they were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, Make them sit down by fifties in a company. 15 And they did so, and made them all sit down.||John 6:10 And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand.|
|Mark 6:41 And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to his disciples  to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all.||Matt 14:19b and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude.||Luke 9:16 Then he took the five loaves and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed them, and brake, and gave to the disciples to set before the multitude.||John 6:11 And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.|
|Mark 6:42 And they did all eat, and were filled. 43 And they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments, and of the fishes. 44 And they that did eat of the loaves were about five thousand men.||Matt 14:20 And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full. 21 And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children.||Luke 9:17 And they did eat, and were all filled: and there was taken up of fragments that remained to them twelve baskets.||John 6:12 When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. 13 Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.|
John 6:14 Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.
John 6:15 When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force, to make him a king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone.
Compare this to 2 Kings 4:42 And there came a man from Baalshalisha, and brought the man of God bread of the firstfruits, twenty loaves of barley, and full ears of corn in the husk thereof. And he said, Give unto the people, that they may eat. 43 And his servitor said, What, should I set this before an hundred men? He said again, Give the people, that they may eat: for thus saith the Lord, They shall eat, and shall leave thereof. 44 So he set it before them, and they did eat, and left thereof, according to the word of the Lord. Note also that, aside from the resurrection, the first miracle of loaves and fishes is the only one which appears in all four gospels.
It is possible that John points out that the loaves were barley loaves to tie this story with that told in 2 Kings 4:42 (see footnote , above).
Both Mark and Matthew mention plentiful, green grass and that this incident takes place in the desert.
The wording in this and parallel sections is similar to that used during the ceremony of bread and wine during the last supper (Mark 14:22, Matthew 26:26, and Luke 22:19).