48 I am that bread of life.
At the beginning of this sixth chapter of John, we read about Jesus’ miraculous feeding of a large crowd of five thousand men (besides women and children) with only five barley loaves and two small fishes. When some of the people who were fed by Jesus looked for Him the next day, and found Him in Capernaum on the other side of the Sea of Galilee, Jesus told them pointedly, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled” (v. 26). Jesus further admonished them, “Labour not for the meat (food) which perisheth, but for that meat (food) which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed” (v. 27). Thus Jesus alerted them to their greater need of seeking the spiritual food that will supply them with eternal life and pointed to Himself as the One who can give just that.
However, the Jews scoffed at Christ’s claim by arguing that He could not measure up to Moses who had given their fathers manna from heaven (vv. 30-31). To which Jesus replied that it was not Moses but God who gave them the manna from heaven (v. 32). He then declared to them that He is the true bread that God has provided for eternal life. In verse 33, He said, “For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.” To which they clamoured, “Lord, evermore give us this bread” (v. 34). Jesus then asserted, “I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” The fact that He is the bread that God has provided for man to receive eternal life was reiterated by Christ no less than 6 times in this chapter of John (vv. 35, 41, 48, 50, 51, 58)!
“Bread” refers to the food necessary to satisfy our hunger, and to nourish and strengthen our bodies. We cannot live without food. No one, whether rich or poor, can live without it.
So it is with Christ. Without Christ, our souls will be starved to eternal peril! Without Christ, the craving and emptiness of our souls can never be satisfied. He alone can supply eternal life that will fully satiate the yearning of our sin-plagued souls. We feed on Him by believing in Him as God’s gift for our salvation and spiritual blessings. If we keep on believing in Christ, our souls shall be fed with the glories of eternal life.