John 6:30-35 – “They said therefore to Him, “What then do You do for a sign, that we may see, and believe You? What work do You perform? 31 “Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread out of heaven to eat.'” 32 Jesus therefore said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven. 33 “For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world.” 34 They said therefore to Him, “Lord, evermore give us this bread.” 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.” NASB
In this passage, Jesus had just performed the miracle of the loaves and fishes taking 5 loaves of bread and 2 small fish and feeding 5,000. Those people had followed Him from Capernaum hoping to see more miracles and signs. I am convinced that, at this juncture, most were curiosity seekers not necessarily true believers. They were following for the loaves and fishes and not because they believed He was the Son of the Living God.
Why do I say that? Note verse 30, they asked what sign He would show them, and then in verse 31, they referred to the miracle of the manna in the wilderness. Jesus’ answer to their question and statement is powerful. He said, “Moses did not give you that bread, it was from My Father.” The Father is the source of the bread or the miracle.
He then moved to the point of it all in verse 33 and said, “For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world.” That resulted in their crying out, “Give us this bread!” In verse 35, Jesus drives the truth home even more powerfully saying, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.”
In that short encounter, our Lord declared Himself to be the “Bread of Life” and while that might not seem significant to us here in America and the West, it was to them. There are some incredibly interesting facts that I feel compelled to unpackage regarding bread in the view of much of the world.
Bread is the Principle Food of much of the world. It is estimated that as much as 75% of the world’s population lives entirely on bread or the food that is derived from wheat or barley flour. It is the chief food in the East. In the Bible “Eating or Breaking Bread” is what we would say, “Have a meal.”
In much of the world, there is a Sacredness of Bread. Those in that region were brought up and many still are, to view bread as having some mystic meaning. In some places, they have such a reverence from bread that they will not arise or salute a guest if they are in the midst of breaking bread together. They wait until they are finished.
The attitude of people in much of the Eastern World is essentially religious. Everything about bread from the sowing of the seed to the baking of the loaves is done in the name of God. These Easterners grasped the power of the injunction in the Lord’s Prayer – “Give us this day our daily bread.” It was to these people that Jesus first said, “I am the Bread of Life.”
The Bread was never Sliced but always Broken. Bread to these people was a principle source of life, for without bread they could not live very long. That makes being the Bread of Life incredibly powerful and the message is clear.
I ask that you consider three things about this bread from heaven and expand on it as the Holy Spirit directs you.
Jesus is the Bread of God – (v.33). He meets the need of the Father on our behalf.
Jesus is the Living Bread – (v.33). He meets the need of the world dying for us.
Jesus is the Bread of Life – (v.35). He meets and sustains the needs of His People.
He gave Himself for us. He has given and gives us His Love and His Life. We are, likewise, to receive His life and give freely to others in their need. He came to us in compassion, we are to be compassionate. He gives generously, we are to be generous. He gives regularly, we are to give regularly that which we have.
We have, through the Blood of Jesus and the Work of the Holy Spirit, received the Bread of Life and that Bread becomes our Life. Through Him, we are Born Again! He is our total supply!
God bless you as you enjoy this wonderful day in Him!