Bread of Life

John  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  32:03
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We are in John 6 this morning. Please turn in your bibles with me to John 6:30-35.
While you are turning to the passage in your bibles, let’s remember the background.
Jesus and his disciples had been ministering, doing healings, and preaching throughout Galilee and Judea. They crossed the sea of Galilee to get away together.
The people followed on land, and found them.
Jesus tested his disciples, knowing what he was going to do, and told them to feed all of the people. The disciples noted there was not earthly way they could.
Jesus then fed all 5000 men, plus the women and children from just 5 barley loaves and two fish. A miracle! A sign that pointed to Jesus being the same God who delivered the Israelites centuries before by providing manna when they were in the wilderness.
Jesus sent his disciples to cross the sea back to Capernaum, while He dismissed the crowd, and prayed on the mountain.
Jesus’ disciples were caught in a storm on the sea all night. Jesus saw them, and went walking out to them on the water. Another miracle! Another sign!
When they left Him in the boat, they arrived at their destination! A third miracle! Another sign.
In the morning, the people, still on the other side of the lake looked for Jesus and could not find him. They knew he did not get in the boat with the disciples.
When some boats came, they got in and went to Capernaum. When they arrived, Jesus was already there!
Jesus confronted them because they were only there for food. He challenged them to work for the food that endures to eternal life.
They asked what work to do, and Jesus said, “The work of God is this, to believe in the one He sent.”
And that is where we are picking up the account in verse 30 today.
John 6:30–35 NIV
So they asked him, “What sign then will you give that we may see it and believe you? What will you do? Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written: ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’” Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” “Sir,” they said, “always give us this bread.” Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
John 6:30 NIV
So they asked him, “What sign then will you give that we may see it and believe you? What will you do?

Give us a sign!

This looks like an odd request.
The reason they went around the lake after Jesus is because they had seen other signs when they saw Jesus healing the sick and had come to seek Him out for more.
When they caught up to Jesus, in an area where they could not get food, He miraculously fed them enough that they were all satisfied, and had 12 baskets of leftovers, from 5 loaves and two fish!
They just found Jesus back in Capernaum when they know he didn’t come by boat, and should never have gotten there before them.
They should have seen all of these signs, and never have asked for another. But they did.
They were still thinking of the common thought that the Messiah would feed them manna everyday. They were still looking for food for their bellies, and not for their souls. They were worried about the physical instead of the righteousness and relationship with God that Jesus, the Messiah was coming to bring them.
Since they were thinking only of being continually fed physically, they were still asking for a sign.
John 6:31 NIV
Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written: ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”
They were specifically asking for this sign of being fed everyday with bread from heaven.
Let’s look at Jesus’ reply.
John 6:32 NIV
Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven.

Not Moses,but my Father

Not bread, true bread from Heaven

John 6:33 NIV
For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

The true bread gives life

The true bread, the bread of God, is the one that gives life to the world!
John 6:34 NIV
“Sir,” they said, “always give us this bread.”
We want it! Who wouldn’t?
John 6:35 NIV
Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.

How does this relate to us?

First, after all they had seen, these people still expected more signs before they would believe Jesus.
This actually goes along with
1 Corinthians 1:22 NIV
Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom,

Do I seek signs or wisdom?

God did give signs to show them that Jesus was the Messiah. But they were more interested in the material benefits, than recognizing the signs which would lead to spiritual benefit.
My question is, am I ever like that? After all God has done, do I expect to see some material benefit in life before I will trust Him?
Or, do I ever expect everything to work out the way I think they should before I will trust Him?
Let’s ask the Lord to give us a heart to see what He has done, to hear His wisdom which is wiser than any plan we would ever devise, and trust Him, the One who sees all, and knows all, and has all power and wisdom.

Do I fail to give Him credit?

These people were giving Moses credit for God’s work of sustaining their ancestors.
Do I ever fail to give God credit for sustaining me? Do I credit myself and my efforts when I should be thanking Him for providing for me?
James speaks to that…
James 4:13–17 NIV
Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil. If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.
Let’s remember to give Him proper credit for the blessings in our lives.

Am I hungry or thirsty?

Now, in one sense, we should always seek after His kingdom and His righteousness. That would be a good hunger, a longing after what God is going to do.
But, for many Christians, we are hungry and thirsty. We are not satisfied. Not because His kingdom has not yet come. No, we hunger and thirst because we are not satisfied. We feel like something is missing. Somehow this Christianity thing just isn’t satisfying us.
That is a major reason I believe that many are falling away. They just are not attending church like they used to. There are so many other things going on in our lives that we find ourselves not having the time to attend church, or bible study, or be involved in Christian ministries. And, those activities just didn’t seem to bring satisfaction anyway…
But, then we just join in with the rest of the world who are so busy. They are caught up in work, or other activities, always running, always busy, always getting, always reaching but never finding satisfaction.
We want money, but it is never enough when we do get it.
We want power, but even when we have power or authority, it isn’t enough.
We want respect, but now matter how many people give us respect, it isn’t enough.
We want acceptance, but that also fails to satisfy. What do I have to keep doing to continue being accepted?
We want control, but we constantly find areas of life where we do not have control.
We want revenge, but even if we get it, we still have the emptiness.
We want justification, but even if we justify our actions, we still feel empty because some will never accept it.
We want to be loved, but we still feel like we are not.
We want peace, but all around and within us there is strife.
We want comfort, but where can we find it when around each corner more suffering and death seems to come.
We want satisfaction. But no matter how hard we work, no matter what we try, it eludes us.
What we are doing isn’t working, so we need to take care of ourselves… but if we think about it, all of these things we have been doing have been done to take care of ourselves.
It just isn’t working.
We are still hungering and thirsting for something more…
Maybe what we hunger and thirst for is the true bread, Jesus!
No, not maybe. That is what we hunger and thirst for. God put that hunger into us when He created us. We try to fill it with so many things. Even good things like going to church and bible study.
But if we hunger and thirst, it means we have been feeding on the wrong bread. It has not been the true bread.
yes, you can go to church and go to Bible study and still hunger. Why?
John 5:39 NIV
You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me,
John 5:40 NIV
yet you refuse to come to me to have life.
Because we tend to substitute the ritual for the true bread.
We need to seek Him. We need to come to and believe Him.
Believing Him is not the same as knowing about Him, just like eating bread is not the same as knowing about bread. You can know all the ingredients, and the nutritional facts of bread, but until you trust that it will nourish and satisfy you, and eat it, you will not be satisfied.
In the same way, you can go to church and read the labels, you can study the facts, but until you come to the Word of God and seek Jesus, until you trust Him and rely on Him to fill you, you will go hungry.
We need Jesus. The bread of life. The One that truly satisfies.
We have seen that… will we believe it?
John 6:36 NIV
But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe.
Let’s not let what Jesus said of the people be said of us. Let’s take this week to get into the Word not to learn facts, but to know and love Him! Let’s seek Him!
John 6:35 NIV
Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
Let’s ask Him to give us more of Him, that we will find the real satisfaction.
Provides better than money
Has all power and authority
Makes us respectful
Accepts us in love, and works in us for our betterment
Has control when we are out of control
Will avenge
Gives peace
Read John 1-6. Ask God to speak to you before you read. Jesus came to give life. Write out the verses that speak to this as you read through what we have studied so far. If I counted correctly it is about 19 references to life. This is an important theme. What does Jesus mean when He speaks of giving life?
Read and memorize John 6:35. What does Jesus mean when He says whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never go thirsty. In Hebrew, it is a common practice to repeat a concept using similar words. You can especially see this in many Psalms and Proverbs. Here, Jesus is saying the same thing twice, but wording it slightly differently. Why do you think He uses this literary device of repetition? What does this mean in your life? Are you hungry or thirsty? Often, we are not satisfied with life. Where are you dissatisfied? Why? How have you sought satisfaction? What have you thought would satisfy? What does this verse say you to in that area of life?
Read Psalm 17. David strove to live pleasing to the Lord. He also had enemies who opposed him. He sought the Lord’s protection, and for the Lord to take vengeance. But what caught my attention was in the last verse. After all that he went through in life, what was he looking to for satisfaction? He had how many victories. He had people sing his praises. He was probably the best known and loved king of Israel. He had a palace. He had so much in this life. But what was the thing that would bring him satisfaction? Where do we look for satisfaction? Success? Wealth? A good position at work? Do we realize the fleeting nature of those things? Let’s ask God to give us a heart like David to find our satisfaction in seeing His face.
Read Psalm 104. Consider the works of the Lord. Just considering the creation He has made, He certainly has provided a wonderful world to sustain life. He is the One who continues to sustain it, even after mankind has turned their backs on Him. Yes, there are natural disasters. But how many days of our lives does this wonderful world work that we do not praise Him for His sustaining power? How many days does He supply for the flowers of the fields, and the birds of the air? Consider Matthew 6:25-34. How has God provided for and sustained you thus far in your life? How many days were you without food or clothing? We need to find our satisfaction in Him; both our eternal satisfaction in seeing His face, and our satisfaction in this world and life as He provides and sustains. Thank the Lord for giving all you need. Ask Him to give us all hearts to be satisfied in Him daily.
Read Ecclesiastes 5:10 and Ecclesiastes 6:7. This reminds me of a quote from John D. Rockefeller. When asked how much is enough, his reply was, “Just a little bit more.” When seeking after things of this world, we are not satisfied. Nothing, no amount seems to really satisfy. But Jesus says to come to Him and we will never hunger. Could it be we, even we Christians, are seeking the wrong things? Do we get caught up in just needing “a little bit more?” Are we seeking after the wrong things? Ask Jesus to reveal where we are seeking the wrong things. Ask Him to change our hearts to seek Him.
Read Psalm 37. This Psalm has a lot to say about what we need to seek and in what we need to find delight. Think through your day? In what do you trust? In what do you take delight? To what do you commit yourself? Do you take time to be still before the Lord? Do you wait patiently for Him? What is the end of the unsaved and wicked? What is the end of the righteous? Who is the help? Who is the deliverer? Ask the Lord to give us trust in Him, desire for Him, and a heart to be still and know Him.
Read Joshua 1:1-9. God told Joshua how he would find success. How would Joshua find success? Did he need to study leadership principles? Did he need to know the 7 laws of an effective leader? What did He need? What does it mean to have it (and what is ‘it’) always on your lips? How can we do that? What does it mean to meditate on it day and night? Memorize Joshua 1:8. Ask the Lord to give you opportunities to share it with others this week. Most people want to have success. So there should be opportunities. How does Joshua 1:8—memorization and meditation on the word of God—tie in with Jesus being the bread of life, the One who truly satisfies so we will not be hungry?
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