“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” (John 6:48-51 ESV).
The Israelites grumbled against Moses and God. They wanted food and comfort. They preferred slavery on their own terms, to freedom on God’s terms. But God in His grace gave them bread from heaven anyway. They wanted bread, so He gave them bread. But, the bread they asked for may have nourished them for a day, but ultimately they still died. But Jesus is the bread of life who has come down from heaven to give His life so that those who trust in Him would have eternal life. In our sin we don’t trust in Him; like the Israelites we prefer the slavery of sin to the freedom of God. But God in His grace gives anyway. He draws, he teaches, He shines in our hearts and shows us how amazing Jesus truly is.
Just think about what Jesus says here; He came down from heaven. He came! He left heaven and came to earth so that God and sinner could be reconciled. And He came to earth, taking on flesh, so that He could give His flesh for the world. He came to lay down His life for the life of the world. He came to give life to His people by giving His life for His people. The infinitely glorious God of the universe came to earth to live, die, and rise again in order to give infinitely guilty sinners life in Himself.
Jesus says in verse 51, “If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever.” To eat of the bread of life is to trust in, rely, and depend upon Jesus; but it’s more than that. When Jesus says that He is the bread of life He’s saying that He is absolutely essential for eternal life, and that He is absolutely satisfying to our souls. So trusting Jesus, believing in Jesus, or eating the bread of life, is being satisfied with all that God is for us in Jesus; it’s believing that Jesus is better than anything this world could give us or take away from us. So when Jesus says, “If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever,” He’s really saying the same thing as the Psalmist when he says, “Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him” (Psalm 34:8 ESV)! So, taste and see that the bread of life is good, and thus take refuge in Him…
I am nothing; Christ is all!