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“I am the Bread of Life”; The Five Big Questions

Sometimes, War is within us—the War between Good and Evil. Jesus Christ won the war between Good and Evil as John portrayed in the Gospel of John. Jesus Christ won the war against Evil, more specifically against the Devil by dying on the Cross for our sins and rose again on the third day conquering death. The Whole purpose of John writing the Gospel of John is to so that Jews and Gentiles alike can come to believe in Him. The objective of this paper is to demonstrate how Jesus Christ is truly the Bread of Life.

The Author John was born into the line of Zebedee. He is referred to one of the sons of Thunder, now he is known as the son of love. He uses to get into arguments, now he is kind and gentle. John wrote The Gospel of John, 1, 2, 3 John, and Revelation. John wrote the Gospel of John around 90 A.D. with the purpose of everyone coming to believe in Jesus Christ.

[1]John wrote the Gospel of John around 90 A.D. with the purpose of everyone coming to believe in Jesus Christ. John 20:31 states, “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” John wrote on the seven sign miracles to help his friends and family come to know, love, and serve the one true Messiah who is none other than Jesus Christ.

The Gospel of John was written in Ephesus in A.D. 90. Roman Province Ephesus is known to be located “near the mouth of the Cayster river, 3 miles from the western coast of Asia Minor, and opposite the island of Samos.”[2] Ephesus was 19.88 miles area from Magnesia (or 32 kilometers away from Magnesia).

The Jews held their Ancestors to the highest level of degree. Due to the fact that the Jews held their ancestors to the highest level of degree, they had the misconception of what Jesus met when he said He was the Bread of Life. The Jews had a work-based mentality, not a faith-based mentality.

John 6:25-29 states, “When they found him on the other side of the lake, they asked him, ‘Rabbi, when did you get here?’ Jesus answered, ‘Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs, I performed but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him, God the Father has placed his seal of approval.’ Then they asked him, ‘What must we do to do the works God requires?’ Jesus answered, ‘The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

John, with this passage, exposing that the Jews had the misconception on what Jesus met that He was the Bread of Life. Jesus was exposing the idea that He alone can sustain eternal life. Nothing on Earth can ever satisfy the hunger of Eternal Life. Jesus, then, provided an historical example of bread using the Ancestor Moses.

John 6:30-35 states, “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.’”

Jesus told the Jews that the only way to accept the true Bread of Eternal Life is to accept and believe in Him. Jesus alone is the sustainer of the Eternal Life. However, the Jews did not understand this concept. Jesus is explaining to the Jews that only He can satisfy their spiritual hunger. Nothing else can satisfy the requirements of eternal life except Jesus Christ. So, the Jews more thought in works-based mentality, not the faith-based mentality. According to John Piper in his article on Desiring God, “Jesus did not come into the world mainly to give bread, but to be bread.”[3]

John 6 highlights the key reason why Jesus came to the Earth. Jesus came to Earth to save each person from the punishment of sin. Jesus came to save them because everyone who has lived on Earth is a sinner. Romans 3:23 states, “For all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God.” Each one of us has at some point displeased God or did things that are contrary to God’s nature. Even each one of us broke at least one of the ten commandments. Once we break one of the Ten Commandments, we are guilty of breaking all of them. James 2:10 states, “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.” With this logic, no one is perfect because all of us has stumbled at one point. The punishment of sin is Death. Romans 6:23 states, “For the wages of sin is death.” However, Jesus, who is the sustainer of the Eternal Life, provided us with a way. All we have to do is to take the first spiritual bite into the Bread of Life.

When speaking to the Jews and the general populace of Israel, He was trying to point them in the direction of eternal life and a perfect relationship with the God of the universe. Jesus was also trying wet the Jews spiritual appetite for the bread of life. However, the Jews did not listen and wet their spiritual appetite for spiritual sidetracks. These spiritual sidetracks include work-based ideas, like good works. Good works do not save you. Only the Bread of Life and Living Water can satisfy your spiritual hunger and your spiritual thirst.

Bread is the sustainer of our lives. Without food and nourishment, our bodies would get skinner and we would all starve to death. Just like without food and Nourishment, without Jesus Christ, our spiritual bodies will grow weaker and weaker until we can barely hold our heads up. The Symbolism behind “The Bread of Life” statement is quite astonishing. The First symbolism is that “The Bread of Life” relates to the Passover. The Second symbolism of Jesus referring to himself as the ‘Bread of Life” indicates that he, alone, is the sustainer of Eternal Life. He is the only one that can give us eternal life once we accept him. Jesus Christ is using “The Bread of Life” analogy to help point the Jews to the gift of Eternal Life once they accept the Truth that Jesus Christ came to save their sin and cleanse them from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).

Jesus, when talking about the bread of Life, was relating to the story of Moses. Moses was one of the Ancestors that the Jews was talking about in John 6:48-51. Moses was also the first person to hear God refer to himself as “I AM” before Moses lead them out of Egyptian Captivity. Moses was also the person who led the Israelites out of Egyptian Captivity. The Biblical account of the Burning Bush is quite astonishing and filled with interesting details.

In Exodus 3, God called Moses to rescue the Israelites from the Egyptians. Moses asked a question to God which was well-received. Exodus 3:10-14 was the dialogue of when God asked Moses to go to Pharaoh to free the Israelites. Exodus 3:10-14 (NASB) states,

“And now come, and I will send you to Pharaoh, so that you may bring My people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt.’ But Moses said to God, ‘Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the sons of Israel out of Egypt?’ and He said, ‘Assuredly I will be with you, and this shall be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship God at this mountain.’ Then Moses said to God, ‘Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ Now many say to me, ‘What is his name’ What shall I say to them?’ And God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM’; and He said, ‘This is what you shall say to the sons of Israel: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”

This is the original statement of what God was called. Fast forward to wandering in the Desert, Moses and God had a conversation about how the Israelites were starving. Out of this conversation came God’s provision for the Israelites which is the Bread that came from Heaven. Jump forward to Jesus’s time frame, Jesus proclaimed, “I AM the bread of life. I am that everlasting spiritual Manna that will never fade away. All you have to do is simply believe.” However, The Jews responded with the previous ancestorial story and asked how this can be true and what they must do to earn this bread.” Jesus simply responded, “Believe.” It takes one action to accept the eternal provision that God had provided through Jesus Christ.

Robert G. Gromacki in New Testament Survey reports Jesus “challenged them to receive the real bread of life that was true (6:32), heavenly (6:33), satisfying (6:35), resurrection life (6:39), everlasting (6:40), and the Christ Life (6:48).” (Robert G. Gromacki. 1974. New Testament Survey. (Baker Books: Grand Rapids, MI: 1974). Pg. 141)

First, the Bread of Life is and always will be True. John 6:32 states, “Jesus then said to them, ‘truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from Haven.” Jesus’s word is true. John wrote that we should sanctify ourselves in God’s Truth. Jews should not wet their appetite for spiritual side dishes of religiosity and traditions. Jews should wet their spiritual hunger on the true spiritual dish of the Bread of Life. Once you crave the Spiritual dish of the Bread of Life, who is none other than Jesus Christ, you will never be spiritual hungry again. What an amazing dish this is.

Second, the Bread of Life is and always will be heavenly. John 6:33 states, “For the Bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the World.” According to this verse, Jesus Christ is the bread of God that gives life to the World. Jesus is truly amazing and should wet our spiritual appetite to follow Him and serve Him forever and ever. Jesus is the spiritual Manna that never withers away. Therefore, Bread of Life is heavenly and is a heavenly gift from God. God gave humanity the free opportunity to feed them with life sustaining gift of the Bread of Life. Once a person partakes in this bread of life, it is like touching heaven and the spiritual reward is amazing. Jesus is truly the heavenly Bread of Life.

Third, The Bread of Life is and will always be satisfying. John 6:35 states, “Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.’” This verse is educating the Jews that once they come to Jesus Christ and wet their appetite, they will drink from the Living Water who will quench their spiritual thirst. Therefore, The Bread of Life is and will always be satisfying. Because the Bread of Life is satisfying, the Jews should be challenged to accept and eat the Bread of Life daily. It stems off the Lord’s prayer. If the Jews do not wet their appetite for the Bread of Life, they are in for a rude awakening.

Fourth, the Bread of Life is the resurrection Life. John 6:39 states, “And this is the will of who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise up on the last day.” Jesus, with these words, is telling the Jews and the Disciples alike that in the last days of his human life, he will die so that Jesus Christ can save them from the punishment of sin. Jesus as the Bread of Life and the resurrection Life is quite astounding. This is truly amazing.

Fifth, The Bread of Life is everlasting. John 6:40 states, “For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last days.” This is truly amazing. Anyone can accept the truly miraculous never-fading away Bread of Life. It is truly wonderful to think about the Bread of Life.

Last, the Bread of Life is Christ’s Life. John 6:48 states, “I am the Bread of Life.” He, then parallel’s this with the manna miracle in Moses time frame. John 6:48-51 states, “I am the Bread of Life. Your Fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” This quote from Jesus Christ is quite intriguing. Jesus is the bread of Life that never fades away and the only way to accept this free spiritual food is by believing in Jesus Christ. These are the following reasons why Jesus challenged the Jews to take part in the spiritual nourishment of the Bread of Life.

The Jews were in a trance regarding what their spiritual foods were. Instead of the wetting their appetite for the “Bread of Life,” they wet their appetite for spiritual side dishes of traditions and heritage. Jews instead of looking forward, were looking towards past. Getting sidetracked with spiritual side dishes can lead to great harms. One of the greatest harms is the failure to believe in Jesus.

In Conclusion, we have seen that the Bread of Life is imperative to have a relationship with Jesus Christ. Without wetting our appetite for the Bread of Life, we will be distracted by the spiritual side dishes of traditions and religiosity. It also promotes a greater than thou attitude. Overall, the Bread of Life should be spiritual utilize to enhance our spiritual growth and maturity in Christ Jesus.

Bibliography

Bible Atlas. 2020. “Ephesus.” Bible Atlas. Date Accessed February 1, 2021. URL: https://bibleatlas.org/ephesus.htm. Para. 1

John Piper. 2009. “Jesus Came Not to Give Bread but to be Bread.” Desiring God. Date Accessed: February 7, 2021.URL: https://www.desiringgod.org/messages/jesus-came-not-to-give-bread-but-to-be-bread, para 1.

[1] Figure 1:Ephesus and surrounding area. bibleatlas.org/ephesus.htm date accessed 2/1/2021. Date Published 2020.

[2] Bible Atlas. 2020. “Ephesus.” Bible Atlas. Date Accessed February 1, 2021. URL: https://bibleatlas.org/ephesus.htm. Para. 1

[3] John Piper. 2009. “Jesus Came Not to Give Bread but to be Bread.” Desiring God. Date Accessed: February 7, 2021.URL: https://www.desiringgod.org/messages/jesus-came-not-to-give-bread-but-to-be-bread, para 1.

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