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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Seeking Sinners -- John 6:22-29

 Jesus has miraculously fed the multitudes and walked on the water through the wind and waves to rescue His own. The spiritual message is that Jesus is the One who is the Bread of Life as the full Word of God, and the One who saves from the storms of life. When the wind (Holy Spirit) is on the water of the Word (Jesus), our spirit is fed and new spiritual, eternal life comes.

He will now speak truth to the crowd who crossed over to the other side of the lake to seek Him. Throughout Jesus’ journey on earth great crowds of both Jews and Gentiles followed after Him. Jesus often withdrew from the crowds to get alone with the Father to commune or to talk with and teach His disciples. The crowd who had witnessed His miracle of multiplying the bread now realizes that Jesus has left the area but they don’t know how! They knew there was only one boat at the lake that His disciples set out in. The crowd is confused, but they will seek Jesus to ask how He got across the lake.

Some ships had come into port from Tiberias so the crowd got onto the ships to go to Capernaum to see Jesus. Once there, the crowd began to question Jesus. Jesus will use their questions to teach them. He begins by telling this crowd that they were following after Him for the wrong reason. They were pleased that He had fed their physical hunger by multiplying the bread and fish. No doubt they were thinking that it would be nice if He would continue to feed them physically so they wouldn’t have to work for food. This would be so much easier! Jesus knows their hearts. He will show them the error of their ways. “I tell you the truth, you are looking for Me not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. Do not work for food that spoils but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. On Him, God has placed His seal of approval.” John 6:26-27 Instead of giving the crowd more fish and bread, Jesus will speak the truth to them. He wants them to know that He has spiritual food that will produce eternal life in them. Since Jesus is the Word of God and the only Son of God, we can only gain this new life through Him and His Holy Spirit.

Although Jesus supplies all of our needs -- both physical and spiritual -- He wants us to feed on that which is eternal, not that which is temporary and fleeting. Since Jesus is the Word of God, He wants us to study and eat His Word of Truth which will feed and satisfy our eternal spirit. God has set His seal upon Jesus. He is sealed by the Holy Spirit of God, and God attested to His identity by His Word -- “This is My beloved Son in whom I am well-pleased.”  Feeding on the Word and absorbing it with its transforming power is far more precious than any physical food, material things or money we can gather. It is the Anointed Word that reveals Jesus so when we study the Word anointed by the Holy Spirit, we come to truly know Jesus not just an image of Him that we have conjured up in our minds.

Next the crowd asks Jesus, “what must we do to do the works God requires?” The Law that these Jews followed required man’s work so they felt that righteousness and salvation would come through their own efforts. Jesus responds to them, “The work of God is this: to believe in the One He has sent.” v29 God did the work! He sent Jesus to redeem the world. There is no work of man attached to Jesus. He is the Sent One of God who is God. God did one work that we are to believe in. Love begins and ends with God. Man cannot do anything to gain God’s favor or love. God did it all. We can please God by loving both God and man through walking by His Word, but we cannot gain any more love or favor than God has already given us through His precious, chosen and only begotten Son. Love by its very nature wants to please the One we love. John 14:21: “He that has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me.” God did what He did out of His love for humanity.  Now He wants us to obey His Word Jesus out of our love for Him.   We must believe in Jesus and follow Him. Jesus wants to imitate Himself in us. We can’t do this in our own strength, but He can do it in His Holy Spirit power! All we have to do is be willing and cooperate with Him. 

Romans 10:3-4: “Since they did not know the righteousness that comes from God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.” 


This response of Jesus no doubt confused the listeners. They change the subject.
                                 (Next week:  Manna in wilderness vs Bread of Life)





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