Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven. “For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world.” Then they said to Him, “Lord, always give us this bread.” Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.” – John 6:32-35

It always seems awful to see commercials of children in other countries that are starving.  They are typically coupled with a message that for just pennies each day these children can be fed a healthy meal.  The deplorable conditions in which these children live, and the poor state of their lack of nutritious meals cause us to rightly take pity on them.  These images attempt to compel us to meet the physical needs of these precious young ones.

Earlier in this chapter, before He walked on water, Jesus fed 5,000 men plus women and children with five loaves of bread and two fish.  The people continue to follow Him and press Him for more signs.  Similar to His meeting with the woman at the well, Jesus presses deeper, exhorting the people to look past the physical provisions to their deeper spiritual needs, when He tells them, “Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life” (v 27).

The people point to Moses and the provision of manna that kept the appetites of the Israelites full (v 31).  They are looking merely at the physical hunger.  But during this discourse, it seems significant that Jesus emphasizes that He is the bread of life (John 6:35, 48, 51) that satisfies spiritual hunger.  He keeps pressing deeper (v 32). 

It is important that Christians look for ways to provide for the physical need of those in the world who are in need of it.  Jesus commanded it.  But once we meet that need, we tend to stop.  The truth is that once the physical need is met, we need to press deeper, just like Jesus did.

Let us pray that God provides us opportunities to not just provide physical needs, but reveal answers for the spiritual needs, as well.


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