Read John 6:41–51
41 At this the Jews there began to grumble about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” 42 They said, “Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, ‘I came down from heaven’?” 43 “Stop grumbling among yourselves,” Jesus answered. 44 “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day. 45 It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me. 46 No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father. 47 Very truly I tell you, the one who believes has eternal life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, yet they died. 50 But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which anyone may eat and not die. 51 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.”
How do people attempt to satisfy their need to feel secure and significant in life?
What needs do you spend the majority of your time trying to satisfy?
Why did the crowds following Jesus begin to grumble?
What contrast does Jesus make between manna and the bread of life? (John 6:48-51, John 6:58)
How has the Christian life turned out to be different from what you expected?
What can you do today to rely on God, rather than on things or people, to satisfy your needs?
What demanding attitudes do you need to ask God to help you change?
“Unlike the perishable manna God gave to Israel through Moses, Jesus comes down from heaven as the true bread to give life to all who believe in Him. Contrary to popular notions, no one “chooses” to believe in Christ; the initiative belongs entirely to God through His Word (John 6:44; cf John 14:6). Those united by faith to Christ will be raised up on the Last Day to enjoy eternal communion with the Father. “ Engelbrecht, Edward A. The Lutheran Study Bible. St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009.
O God, draw me ever closer to You through Your Word and Sacraments. Amen.
Bread of Heaven
Here an interesting factoid about the famous hymn Guide Me, O Thou Great Redeemer AKA Bread of Heaven. The hymn was originally written in Welsh and was called Arglwydd, arwain trwy’r anialwch (“Lord, lead me through the wilderness”). The tune and hymn are often called Bread of Heaven because of a line in this English translation. This hymn is also frequently sung by fans at Welsh soccer and rugby matches!