30 Mark resumes the account of the mission of the Twelve. The disciples, here called "apostles" returned to Jesus with a report on their apostolic work of preaching, casting out demons, and healing.
31-32 Their activities had created much interest. So many people were coming and going that that the disciples had no time even to eat.Since the disciples were doubtless tired from their missionary activities and from the demands of the crowds, Jesus decided to to seek rest for them in a quite and solitary place.
Jesus may have had another reason for going to a deserted area in addition to seeking rest. It was in the desert that God had given rest to his ancient people after their Exodus fro Egypt. Prophets such as Isaiah (63:14) and Jeremiah (31:2) saw the Israelites in the desert as a type of a second rest promised to the new people of God in a second exodus. Jesus and his disciples fulfill this promise. Jesus, not the pillar and the cloud, is God's presence, and the Bread (instead of the manna) is God's provision of sustenance.
33-34 The best way for Jesus and his disciples to get away from the crowds was by boat, going to the northeast side of the lake. But the crowd saw it and followed by land. Somehow they managed to walk around the lake and arrive at the landing place ahead of the boat (v.33).
Jesus had every right to be annoyed with the crowd. They had prevented him and his disciples from having a much needed rest. But instead of being irritated, he responded compassionately and in love (v.34), seeing them as "sheep without a shepherd" (cf. Num. 27:17; Ezek. 34:5). These two OT passages associate the shepherd theme with the desert. Jesus, like Moses, was leading his people in the desert and, like David (cf. Ezek. 34:23, 25), was providing rest for them.
[NIV BIBLE COMMENTARY Volume 2: New Testament].
JESUS IS LORD.