Sunday

02 August 2015

“Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me shall never be thirsty.” (v. 35)

Psalm: Psalm 78


Background

What is it that is drawing the crowds to follow Jesus to Capernaum? Jesus has just performed a powerful miracle with thousands of people present. He had taken five barley loaves and two fishes, given thanks to God for them and then fed a great crowd until their hunger was satisfied and the people were amazed (John 6:1-14).

The question is what is it that amazed them? What did they see? Did they see a miracle worker who had the power to take a small quantity of food and feed a great crowd? Are they following Jesus in the mistaken belief that they will never have to look for food again? Or did they see the bread and fishes as a sign pointing the mind and the heart to the true gift of God to God's ownpeople? This gift which is much bigger than a free meal because it is the gift of Jesus himself?

Jesus is showing them that the miracles are pointing towards who he really is and to what he is inviting them to share. "I am the bread of life," he says, "Do you want it or not?" Strangely, they don't seem to know the answer. They know they do not want to go hungry again, but they do not know if they want to commit to following Jesus.

The bread Jesus is offering them is spiritual food which will satisfy their deepest hunger for God. Jesus is inviting them into a new relationship with God.

At this point many of the crowd walk away and they choose to go hungry.


To Ponder

  • Imagine you were in the crowd who went on to Capernaum. What are you seeing and hearing?
  • What gets in the way of you coming to Jesus?


Bible notes author: The Revd Diane Clutterbuck

  • Sign up for e-newslettersKeep in touch with what interests you