The Bread of Life

Hi everyone, it’s Pastor Dave. It’s good to be with you today. Today is a journal day, “Daily Journal” day, and we are going to be in John Chapter 6 today. If you’ve got your Alone With God journal, then grab it and turn it to a “Daily Journal” page. If you don’t have an  Alone With God journal, get one or find out about it at Or you can get the phone app. Search for the Word By Mail phone app in your app store, and you can follow along with all of these journal guides. You can also use them as devotions. You can write in a blank journal even if you don’t write. Like I said, if you don’t write, then just use this opportunity to stop down with God and listen to him for a few minutes. Just focus on God’s Word and what he wants to say to you today.

So, today, we’re going to be in John Chapter 6. Our last two real Journal Guides that I’ve done were both “boat” based journal guides. Both of them. One was when the Disciples thought they were going to drown in the boat when Jesus was asleep, and another one was when Jesus walked to the Disciples on the water while they thought they were going to die in the storm again. And so, really, in both of those, Jesus is challenging the Disciples about who or what they’re truly putting their faith in and to what extent they are putting their faith in what they are putting their faith in. In essence, it’s a challenge – it’s a challenge about their faith.

And so, when we continue in John Chapter 6, Jesus is going to do the same thing to the crowd that is following him. And as he does, he’s going to do the same thing to us. He is going to challenge our faith, and we need it. We need our faith challenged. So, open your Bible to John Chapter 6. It starts in verse 22. When I am sharing with you, it is out of the New Living Translation, the NLT, and at verse 22, the section heading says, Jesus, the Bread of Life.

Then, verse 22 says, 22 The next day the crowd that had stayed on the far shore saw that the disciples had taken the only boat, and they realized Jesus had not gone with them. Then, skip down to verse 24. 24 So when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went across to Capernaum to look for him. 25 They found him on the other side of the lake and asked, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”

And then, in verse 26, the challenge begins – the faith challenge begins. In John 6:26, it says, 26 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, you want to be with me because I fed you, not because you understood the miraculous signs. 27 But don’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that the Son of Man can give you.

So, Jesus immediately challenges this group. And remember, it was five thousand that the Disciples had to feed as they had crossed the lake for some time of rest and relaxation. They end up feeding the five thousand. This is a big part of that five thousand that has come back from Bethsaida to Capernaum. And they’re kind of chasing Jesus down for another free lunch. I mean, you know, if you want to get people to follow you, you just give them free stuff and do what they want, and they’ll follow you. Jesus doesn’t do that. He challenges them right up front. Again, in verse 26, “I tell you the truth, you want to be with me because I fed you, not because you understood the miraculous signs.

And so, in verse 28, the crowd kind of challenges him back. 28 They replied, “We want to perform God’s works, too. What should we do?” 29 Jesus told them, “This is the only work God wants from you: Believe in the one he has sent.”
And then now, they get kind of like, edgy. Verse 30 says, 30 They answered, “Show us a miraculous sign if you want us to believe in you. What can you do? 31 After all, our ancestors ate manna while they journeyed through the wilderness! So, they’re challenging Jesus. And they’re saying, Listen. Moses gave our ancestors bread from heaven to eat.

And then, in verse 32, 32 Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, Moses didn’t give you bread from heaven. My Father did. And now he offers you the true bread from heaven. This is the basis of the challenge right here. . . . now he offers you the true bread from heaven. 33 The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” Jesus is talking about himself, but this crowd does just what the woman at the well did in John Chapter 4. Here in John 6, verse 34, it says, 34 “Sir,” they said, “give us that bread every day.” They’re not getting it – they still want the free stuff. And we are so like them.

35 Jesus replied, “I am . . . Another one of the seven great “I AM” statements of Jesus. “I am . . .  It means “I EXIST AS” I exist as the bread of life. I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.

And then, in verse 36, he starts to get really rough on them and says, 36 But you haven’t believed in me even though you have seen me. In verse 37, he assures us 37 However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them. And it’s really important there because God knows who will receive Christ. And so, Jesus is referring to all those that would receive Christ.

And so, down in verse 40, 40 For it is my Father’s will that all who see his Son and believe in him should have eternal life. All who see his Son – who see Jesus for who he is and believe in him should have eternal life. I will raise them up at the last day.”

41 Then the people began to murmur in disagreement because he had said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” Then they said, “Hey! This is Joseph’s son. We know this guy!" in verse 42. In verse 43, 43 But Jesus replied, “Stop complaining about what I said. 44 For no one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them to me, and at the last day I will raise them up. (As he said just previously.)

45 As it is written in the Scriptures, ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me. Everyone who listens to the words of God and learns from Jesus comes to Jesus.

And then verse 47. 47 “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes has eternal life.48 Yes, I am the bread of life!
And then, in verse 49, he tries to explain the manna in the wilderness, but in verse 51, he says, 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. (I AM that manna) Anyone who eats this bread will live forever; and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is my flesh.”

Now, we know Jesus is talking about the Cross, but these people did not. They heard him say, “This bread that will give us eternal life is his flesh.” So, in verse 52, they begin arguing. “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” they asked.

Now, here’s the challenge, and this is what I really want you to see. 53 So Jesus said again, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you. 54 But anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise that person at the last day. 55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. 56 Anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.

Now, listen, this is hardcore because Jesus could be saying, “I’m not talking about you actually eating my physical flesh. I’m not talking about you actually drinking my blood. I’m talking about koinonia. I’m talking about communion with me. I’m talking about you taking my life into your life.” But he doesn’t explain those things we know later. He’s just hitting them right between the eyes.

Verse 58. 58 I am the true bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will not die as your ancestors did . . . So then, verse 59 says, 59 He said these things while he was teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. (Which is awesome, and you should come to Israel with us and go to the synagogue in Capernaum where he taught this message and where we teach it.)

But look at the section title over verse 60. It says, Many Disciples Desert Jesus.

And then verse 60. 60 Many of his disciples said, “This is very hard to understand. (Now look, this is where faith comes in.) “This is very hard to understand. How can anyone accept it?”

61 Jesus was aware that his disciples (not the Twelve, but those that are following him) were complaining, so he said to them, “Does this offend you? 62 Then what will you think if you see the Son of Man ascend to heaven again? He adds to the challenge. He doesn’t explain the flesh and blood maybe that we know. And if you don’t know, ultimately, what he’s referring to is communion, is sharing his life. It’s his life becoming part of our life, which we symbolize in the taking of communion. But these people don’t know, and Jesus isn’t explaining to them. It’s incredible.

65 Then he said, “That is why I said that people can’t come to me unless the Father gives them to me.”

So, verse 63 says, 63 The Spirit alone gives eternal life. Human effort accomplishes nothing. And the very words I have spoken to you are spirit and life. 64 But some of you do not believe me.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning which ones didn’t believe, and he knew who would betray him.) He had to know because he could not not know because he’s omniscient. He’s still God and man. One hundred percent of both.

Verse 65, 65 Then he said, “That is why I said that people can’t come to me unless the Father gives them to me.”

And then verse 66. Here’s your challenge and my challenge today. John Six Six Six. Try to remember that in a bad way. John Six Six Six: 66 At this point many of his disciples turned away and deserted him. 67 Then Jesus turned to the Twelve and asked, “Are you also going to leave?”

And here is what we need to say. Remember the Disciples – their faith has been challenged twice in our last two devotion guides. But here’s where we need to be.

Verse 68, 68 Simon Peter replied, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life. 69 We believe, and we know you are the Holy One of God.”

And then, following that, Jesus makes a reference to Judas Iscariot. But what we’re focused on right now is Simon Peter replied, “Lord, to whom would we go? That doesn’t mean the Disciples understood this: “eat my flesh, drink my blood.” This is a seemingly literal sermon that Jesus preaches to the people because he’s challenging their faith. And so, you can almost hear between the lines Simon Peter saying, “Listen, we may not understand exactly what you just said, but Lord, where else are we going to go? You have the words that give eternal life. We believe. We’ve put our faith in you. And we know you are the Holy One of God.

That’s my challenge to you today. I know that was a long scripture read. I would encourage you to read it again. Read the whole section again slowly. And put yourself in the position of the people hearing these words. And then, can you say with Peter and the other Disciples, “Lord, I may not understand everything you’re saying or doing. But where else am I going to go, Lord? You have the words of eternal life, and I believe – I know you are – the Holy One, the Anointed One, the Messiah of God.” Man, I pray you guys would wrestle with this.

So, in your journal, turn your journal page – let’s wrap this up; it’s been a long one. First, you Meditate on that devotion I just shared with you, that little challenge.

And then, you Apply it. “How does this apply to your life?” In what area is Jesus challenging your faith? And in what area of your life is he challenging you to believe without fully understanding? And apply this sermon and this message and the way Jesus handled the people and his Disciples – apply that to the things that you don’t understand, or maybe you’re questioning God. Why didn’t you do this, or why don’t you do that? Or why this? Or why that? Maybe Jesus is challenging you. And maybe he would say to us, “Are you also going to leave with all the others that are deserting me?”

And then respond. In your journal guide, Respond. And my prayer is, again, that we would always say, “Lord, I may not fully understand everything you’ve said. But I know you. I know you are my Savior. I know you are the Messiah, the Anointed One, the One Sent from God. I believe, and so I’m going to hold on to you until you reveal more and more of your truth and yourself to me.”

So, let’s pray, and I’ll turn you over to your journal.

Lord, Jesus, Thank you, Lord, that you didn’t baby anybody. Lord, you challenge your Disciples’ faith. You challenge those who were following you. You challenge their faith. And Lord, you knew, and the Father knew exactly who would choose to believe whether they fully understood or agreed or not. And Lord, we pray that would be us. That we would always say, “Lord, to whom would I go? Where would we go, Lord? The things I don’t know, I’ll know, at the very latest, when I see you face-to-face.” But Lord, I pray you would give us the faith to follow you, to trust you, and to know you better, to understand you more, and to be transformed more into your image. Thank you for this hard Word. In your name, Jesus, amen.

Alright, guys. That was a long, rough read and devotion there. But, man, I hope you go back over it. Read it again.

Check out the Alone With God journal at You can text us or call us at (877) 790-WORD. (877) 790-9673. I really encourage you to download the Word By Mail app from your app store. There are well over a thousand verse-by-verse messages. There’s so much there. You can dig in there and just be blessed by God’s Word and the teaching of it in clear verse-by-verse fashion. So, download the Word By Mail app.

I will see you tomorrow. God bless you. Bye-bye.

No Comments