When we are convinced of something—some point of view—we tend to be unwilling to consider any other point of view, even if what we believe might not be true. Why? Simple. We’re invested in whatever position we hold.
When it comes to spiritual things and spiritual truth, we become convinced of certain doctrinal and theological beliefs most familiar to us. What we become convinced of is what we’ve heard over and over again. When we argue or defend a certain position, it’s typically what we’ve heard within a closed circle of thought. So, we become confident in it.
The appearance of Jesus in HIs public ministry was a great disruption for the nation of Israel and its religious leaders. These rabbis and teachers were well-established and convinced in their own thinking. And the people generally followed what they thought and taught because they were the experts in religious matters.
When Jesus declares, I am the bread of life, it’s disruptive for everyone including His followers. It challenges what people think they know but pushes them to consider a truth never before considered. This is what Jesus does in our lives when we really hear Him. He disrupts what we think we believe and calls us to a radically different way of life.
Jesus told them, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never become hungry, and whoever believes in me will never become thirsty.
I’ve told you that you have seen me. However, you don’t believe in me. Everyone whom the Father gives me will come to me. I will never turn away anyone who comes to me.
I haven’t come from heaven to do what I want to do. I’ve come to do what the one who sent me wants me to do. The one who sent me doesn’t want me to lose any of those he gave me. He wants me to bring them back to life on the last day.
My Father wants all those who see the Son and believe in him to have eternal life. He wants me to bring them back to life on the last day.”
(John 6:35-40 GW)
I will never turn away anyone who comes to me
Review the Scriptures above as you answer the following questions
How does Jesus describe Himself here? What does He say about Himself?
What does Jesus say is the benefit of a person who comes to Him and believes in Him?
Do you think what He says is intended to be figurative and spiritual in nature, or not?
What great promise does Jesus make about those who come to Him?
In this short group of verses, Jesus declares several powerful truths. Let’s consider each of them in a brief way. First, He says of Himself, “I am the bread of life.” This is the first of several metaphoric statements Jesus makes using the phrase—I am.
We’ll look at that phrase more closely in John 8. Here, is statement is related to what He said earlier about the manna sent from heaven.
Jesus goes on to declare we will never be hungry or thirsty when we come to Him personally and believe in Him. Jesus speaks of the hunger of our soul and spirit not our belly. We tend to be fixated on what is immediate and temporal but Jesus wants to refocus our attention on our eternal needs and the essence of our being.
Jesus says He will never turn away those who come to Him. God is the great Includer. The Father wants all people to see His Son for who He is and to believe—trust—in Him to receive eternal life.
Jesus speaks of resurrection twice in these few verses. His resurrection from the dead is the guarantee of the promise of eternal life for those who trust in Him. The Lord’s resurrection is the gateway for our resurrection.
Many people have the point of view God restricts who receives eternal life based on HIs arbitrary choice. Later, we’ll see many who begin to follow Jesus not continue because they don’t understand what He says or it’s too difficult to accept. They choose this of their own free will and so it is with all of us.
The Father draws us to Himself and Jesus says He won’t turn anyone away. The choice is ours—to believe or not—to follow or not.
Taking it to heart...
Read through the Scripture text again as you consider and answer these questions
Do you understand what Jesus means by coming to Him as the bread of life?
What do you find yourself focused on most—things to do with your body or things related to your soul?
Do you see how the resurrection is directly connected to the promise of eternal life?
How has Jesus disrupted your life for the good?
Meditate On This— Jesus says He will never turn away those who come to Him. The Father—the great Includer—wants all people to see His Son for who He is and to trust in Him for eternal life.
Prayer Focus— When you find yourself more concerned about your physical needs than the state of your soul, ask the Lord to help you understand how He can be your Bread of Life.