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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

SIL Sisters in Christ: Jesus is the Bread of Life

Read Past Posts: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6

I don't think you realise just how many hours we spend eating.... 

A quick google search told me that the average person spends around 35,000 hours eating in their lifetime. 

We eat, then just a few hours layer we're hungry again - but in John 6 Jesus offers us food that will satisfy our hunger forever. 

It's not the latest diet fad and you can't find it in a grocery store - it is only found in Jesus. 


In John 6, we see Jesus feed a crowd of 5,000 with just five loaves of bread and two small dried fish. 

He miraculously feeds this huge crowd - but they still wanted proof that He was the Messiah. 

Jesus tells them; "My Father gives you the true bread from heaven, the brass that gives life to the world" - but just like the Samaritan woman we met at the well last week , the crowd says to Jesus "give us some" (verse 34) - and that's when Jesus tells the, that He was actually speaking about Himself - not bread made from flour. 

Jesus tells them; 
"I am the Bread of Life, 
whoever comes to me will never go hungry, 
and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty" 
(verse 35) 

Just as bread and food are nourishment for our physical lives, Jesus is the source of our spiritual energy and life. 

But what is so significant about the bread? Well, John tells us in verse 3 that it was almost Passover time. During this time of the year, bread was a huge feature of the season - but Jesus shows the people that salvation and spiritual nourishment does not come from physical bread - but from Jesus Himself. 

Jesus fed the entire crowd from the boy's five small loaves and two small dried fish - and had lots left over. The crowd was huge and they knew what a miracle this as, so they began to talk amongst themselves.... "Surely this is the prophet!" (v14) 

Once everyone was satisfied, Jesus asked His disciples to collect the leftovers - but why? Because Jesus didn't want anything to go to waste. 

God had given Him this bread to feed the crowd just as He gives us to Jesus to save. God sent Jesus to gather us all so that He can raise us up on the last day. 

Jesus leaves no crumb behind. 

As he says in verse 37; 
"All those the Father gives me will come to me, 
and whoever comes to me I will never drive away"
- nothing will go to waste - that is the Father's will. 

Jesus Walks on Water
As if feeding a crowd of 5,000 on so little food was no big feat, Jesus then goes on to walk on water. 

But why does John include this within his gospel? Sure, it gives a great visualisation and gives something for kids to try and attempt in the pool each summer (don't tell me you didn't try!) but what does it really show us? 

There's a big clue in verse 21. John tells us that "immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading" - so why would Jesus walk on water when he could just zap to where He wanted to go?. I think it's because Jesus was trying to make a spiritual point here... 

Jesus isn't limited by physical circumstances. As soon as we accept Jesus, we spiritually reach our destination. 

The people return hungry
Not long after He fed them, the people return hungry. Jesus tells them "do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life". But instead of asking for this gift, the people ask for what they can do. They were asking for works instead of grace.

Jesus tells them "The work of God is this: to believe in the one He has sent" (verse 29). He tells us that all we need to do is trust in Him and we have a place in the Kingdom of God. 

But the people aren't convinced. Can it really be that easy? They asked for proof (as if feeding 5000 and walking on water wasn't miraculous enough). 

But Jesus knew exactly why they didn't believe Him and he explained; "no one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them" 

But once God does that - what does Jesus do? He tells us in verse 37 - though the person may themselves turn away, Jesus will never push them. He doesn't let anyone go to waste - we just need to seek Him. 

Jesus stresses that those who believe in Him have eternal life. 

He consistently tells us that salvation is through faith - not works or rituals or rules. 

Since Jesus is the Holy One of God, we can trust Him to do what He says He will do - He will not lose anyone, but will raise us all on that final day. 

Every last crumb will be gathered. 
Nothing will go to waste. 
Jesus gives us life. 

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