Bible Society of South Africa

Jesus – Day 11

Jesus: The Bread of Life.

Bible text(s)

35“I am the bread of life,” Jesus told them. “Those who come to me will never be hungry; those who believe in me will never be thirsty.

12After the earthquake, there was a fire — but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire, there was the soft whisper of a voice.

1 Kings 19:12GNBOpen in Bible reader

4But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Human beings cannot live on bread alone, but need every word that God speaks.’ ”

Mk 1.14–15Lk 4.14–15

Mk 1.16–20Lk 5.1–11

Lk 6.17–19

Matthew 4:4GNBOpen in Bible reader

One of the most appealing aromas imaginable is the smell of bread baking, especially on a cold day. We used to live across the road from a bakery and it was always a wonderfully satisfying experience to walk out of the house and breathe in the warm, delicious aroma wafting through the air. It was somehow gratifying just to smell it! But would that smell really have stopped hunger pangs for even a minute? You need the bread itself to satisfy the hunger.

This teaching above came after Jesus had fed five thousand men (not counting the women and children) with five small barley loaves and two fish, and had filled twelve baskets with the leftovers. The people were amazed at what He did, but they had actually failed to understand the significance of the miracle. Through it they should have been pointed to the truth: that Jesus had come from God and that He had the means to give them eternal life. Instead they saw Him only as satisfying their physical hunger, without seeing the deeper truth that He could satisfy their spiritual hunger. Moses had experienced the same with the Israelites in the desert with the manna God had provided. They also did not see more in it than the physical provision of their needs. Would we have been any different to them then? Are we any different to them now?

Is it not true that we all have the tendency to concern ourselves more with our physical needs and neglect, or ignore, our spiritual needs? Is physical hunger more insistent than spiritual hunger or do we just not recognize the signs as readily because we are spiritually indifferent? We are quicker to see the physical than we are to perceive the spiritual. Our ears are so often filled with the noises of this world that we do not hear God’s “still, small voice.” (1 Kings 19:12) Even spiritually receptive people can find themselves forgetting that “Man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes out of the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4) and fight a continuous battle against physical temptations, instead of being armed with God’s Word.

Jesus came to satisfy all your needs. How spiritually hungry are you?

Bible Society of South Africav.4.14.1
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