Read: John 6:25-71
I am the bread of life. (v. 35)
The challah bread our church serves for Communion is lovingly baked by volunteers. It tastes so good! I sometimes feel cheated if the piece broken off for me is smaller than I hoped. Nonetheless, it’s far better than the Styrofoam-like cubes I have so often been served. And yet, neither can fully convey the meaning of Jesus’ claim, “I am the bread of life” (John 6:35). It’s the first of seven “I am” claims Jesus made in John’s gospel. What did he mean?
The Galileans searching for Jesus thought it meant he would give them bread like he did in the miraculous feeding (v. 34). They wouldn’t have to labor again! The Jewish leaders were outraged that Jesus called himself bread from heaven and called God his Father. How could the carpenter’s son say such things (v. 42)? Many others found his teaching hard and left Jesus (v. 66). The Twelve stuck with him, agreeing with Peter, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (v. 68).
What do you want from Jesus? Many want him to meet their desires, some want him to fit their idea of God, others find his words too hard and turn away. Jesus is so much more. Nothing will ever satisfy our soul like feasting on every word of our Lord. And this bread of life is not limited to a select few. When Jesus said, “Whoever comes to me shall not hunger” (v. 35), he included the likes of you and me. Come to him today! —Jon Opgenorth
As you pray, thank Jesus for satisfying your soul.
About the Author
Rev. Jon Opgenorth serves as president of Words of Hope. Previously, he served for 18 years as senior pastor at Trinity Reformed Church in Orange City, Iowa. In preparation for ministry, he received a BA in Religion from Northwestern College, and an MDiv from Fuller Theological Seminary.