The Bread of Life

Sunday’s Scripture – August 1, 2021

John 6:24-35

 

Reflection

“One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4)

Jesus proved this during his forty days of fasting and temptation in the wilderness. As God’s definitive Word, it is he himself who feeds us. At the end of John chapter 6, the time had come to reveal this to the world.

After Jesus miraculously feeds five thousand people, his focus shifts from physical food to spiritual food. Jesus masterfully engages those present in conversation to guide them to a place where they could receive what he was about to tell them. He says not to work for food that perishes, but for food that endures to eternal life given by the Son of Man. (Jn. 6:27) He tells them that the manna their ancestors ate in the wilderness was from God, not Moses. And that the true bread from heaven is given by God for the life of the world. (Jn 6:32-33).

The crowd is interested. They now see their spiritual hunger. “Sir, give us this bread always,” they say. (Jn.6:34)

Jesus has them where he wants them. He can now come out and say it: “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” (Jn. 6:35)

Jesus claims that he is the bread from heaven. He is the one sent by God. He is the Son of Man. He gives life to the world. Jesus is our spiritual manna. And just like the material manna, we can’t store up enough of him for the rest of the week. We must ingest him daily.

It’s been said that baptism is initiation into the life of faith and that communion is food for the journey. This journey through life is at times tiresome, discouraging, and more like a walk in the wilderness than a park. Jesus knows this and so he feeds us, strengthens us, and sustains us in every way.

And, if we are what we eat, then Jesus imparts his life to us. He feeds us until we become like him. May it be so in us to the glory of God and for the sake of the world.

 

Questions

  • How do you feed on Jesus daily?
  • What has your experience of communion been like? Start to look at it as food for the journey and see how that changes the experience.
  • How do you sense Jesus feeding you these days?

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