Living Bread (22-08-22)
Psalm of Praise: Psalms 33:20-22
We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.
May your unfailing love be with us, Lord, even as we put our hope in you.
Bible Reading: John 6:35, 47-51
Jesus said, "I am the bread of life.
Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
Very truly I tell you, the one who believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life.
Your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, yet they died.
But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which anyone may eat and not die.
I am the living bread that came down from heaven.
Whoever eats this bread will live forever.
This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world."
I love fresh homemade bread. Supermarket sliced bread can sit in the bread bin for a week or so and end up being fed to the chickens. There is no chance of that happening with fresh homemade bread. We eat it. And then we eat some more. Until it’s gone. The same is true with Bagels, Stollen and Chelsea Buns! They are all great, but I always want more. The problem with it is that I haven’t yet managed to find a ‘High Bread’ diet.
By contrast, when Jesus fed the five thousand on the mountainside they were all satisfied and there was bread left over.
This miracle with the loaves and fish is important on many levels. As with the stilling of the storm, it shows the authority that Jesus has over nature, it also links Jesus directly with the manna from heaven that God provided for the Israelites in the wilderness, and it shows Jesus heart of compassion for the poor and the hungry. But beyond all that, this miracle points to the life that Jesus gives us when we believe in him.
Twice Jesus says to the crowd, ‘I am the bread of life.’ The first time it is part of a conversation about physical bread, the five loaves. The second time it is in a conversation about heavenly bread, the manna in the wilderness. In this Jesus is saying that when we eat the bread that he offers us, he satisfies us both in this life and in the life to come.
There are many things that claim to satisfy us in this life, and they may appear to do in the short term until, like clothes, mobile phones or cars, the fashions change or the technology is updated and the satisfaction wears off. Like the bread in the bread bin it goes stale.
Let us not be duped by the advertising; instead let us continue to feed on the Living Bread through which we will be satisfied both in this life and in the life to come.
Forgive me Lord when I seek satisfaction from what the world offers.
Thank you that through faith in you I am satisfied in this life and in the life to come.
No-one but you, Lord