bethsaida Summary and Overview
bethsaida in Easton's Bible Dictionary
house of fish. (1.) A town in Galilee, on the west side of the sea of Tiberias, in the "land of Gennesaret." It was the native place of Peter, Andrew, and Philip, and was frequently resorted to by Jesus (Mark 6:45; John 1:44; 12:21). It is supposed to have been at the modern 'Ain Tabighah, a bay to the north of Gennesaret. (2.) A city near which Christ fed 5,000 (Luke 9:10; compare John 6:17; Matt. 14:15-21), and where the blind man had his sight restored (Mark 8:22), on the east side of the lake, two miles up the Jordan. It stood within the region of Gaulonitis, and was enlarged by Philip the tetrarch, who called it "Julias," after the emperor's daughter. Or, as some have supposed, there may have been but one Bethsaida built on both sides of the lake, near where the Jordan enters it. Now the ruins et-Tel.
bethsaida in Smith's Bible Dictionary
(house of fish) of Galilee, #Joh 12:21| a city which was the native place of Andrew, Peter and Philip, #Joh 1:44; 12:21| in the land of Gennesareth, #Mr 6:46| comp. Mark 6:53 and therefore on the west side of the lake. By comparing the narratives in #Mr 6:31-53| and Luke 9:10-17 it appears certain that the Bethsaida at which the five thousand were fed must have been a second place of the same name on the east of the lake. (But in reality "there is but one Bethsaida, that known on our maps at Bethsaida Julias." L. Abbot in Biblical and Oriental Journal. The fact is that Bethsaida was a village on both sides of the Jordan as it enters the sea of Galilee on the north, so that the western part of the village was in Galilee and the eastern portion in Gaulonitis, part of the tetrarchy of Philip. This eastern portion was built up into a beautiful city by Herod Philip, and named by him Bethsaida Julias, after Julia the daughter of the Roman emperor Tiberius Caesar. On the plain of Butaiha, a mile or two to the east, the five thousand were fed. The western part of the town remained a small village.--ED.)
bethsaida in Schaff's Bible Dictionary
BETHSA'IDA (house of fishing), a city of Galilee, near Capernaum. John 12:21; Matt 11:21. Many recent writers urge that there were two Bethsaidas, since the desert-place where the 5000 were fed belonged to ''the city called Bethsaida," Luke 9:10, while after the miracle the disciples were to go before him unto the other side to Bethsaida, Mark 6:45, which it is said could not refer to the same town. 1. If there were two towns of this name, the first one, in Galilee, was on the west side of the lake. Robinson, Grove, Porter, and others place it at Ain et-Tabighak, north of Khan Minyeb, others at Khan Minyeh. 2. Bethsaida Julias, in Gaulanitis, on the eastern bank of the Jordan, near its entrance into the lake. But it seems quite unlikely that two cities in such close neighborhood should have borne the same name. Hence Dr. W. M. Thomson supposes that there was but one Bethsaida, which was built on both sides of the Jordan, and places the site at Abu-Zany, where the Jordan empties into the Lake of Galilee. The Sinaitic manuscript omits "belonging to a city called Bethsaida" in Luke 9:10; hence, Wilson also holds that there is no necessity for two Bethsaidas; and this seems the more probable view. The eastern part was beautified by Philip the tetrarch, and called Bethsaida Julias (in honor of a daughter of the emperor Augustus), to distinguish it from the western Bethsaida, in Galilee. -- Schaff:Through Bible Lands, p. 353. See Capernaum.
bethsaida in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
("house of fish".) A city of Galilee, W. of and close to the sea of Tiberias, in the land of Gennesareth (Mark 6:45-53; John 6:16-17; John 1:44; John 12:21). Andrew, Peter, and Philip belonged to it, Near Capernaum and Chorazin (Matthew 11:21; Luke 10:13). When Jesus fed the 5,000 on the N.E. of the lake, they entered into a boat to cross to Bethsaida (Mark 6:45), while John says" they went over the sea toward Capernaum." Being driven out of their course, Jesus came to them walking on the sea; they landed in Gennesaret and went to Capernaum; so that Bethsaida must have been near Capernaum. In Luke 9:10-17 another Bethsaida, at the scene of feeding the 5,000, is mentioned (though the Curetonian Syriac and later Sinaitic omit it), which must have been therefore N.E. of the lake; the same as Julias, called from the emperor's daughter Julia. The miracle was wrought in a lonely "desert place," on a rising ground at the back of the town, covered with much "green grass" (Mark 6:39). In Mark 8:10-22 a Bethsaida on the E. side of the lake in Gaulonitis (now Jaulan) is alluded to; for Jesus passed by ship from Dalmanutha on the W. side "to the other side," i.e. to the E. side. Thus, Caesarea Philippi is mentioned presently after, Bethsaida being on the road to it; and the mount of the transfiguration, part of the Hermon range, above the source of the Jordan (Mark 9:2-3); the snow of Hermon suggested the image, "His raiment became white as snow."