What Jesus Did! 'No Backing Off!' — John 6:52-56

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Then the Jews began to argue among themselves. They said, "How can this man give us his body to eat?" Jesus said, "I tell you the truth. You must eat the body of the Son of Man. And you must drink his blood. If you don't do this, then you don't have real life in you. The person that eats my body and drinks my blood has eternal life. I will raise up that person on the last day. My body is true food. My blood is true drink. If a person eats my body and drinks my blood, then that person lives in me, and I live in that person."
— John 6:52-56
Illustration of John 6:52-56 — "How can this man give us his body to eat?"

Key Thought

Jesus didn't make things easy for folks to follow him. We sometimes forget this today, when so much "bait" is used to try to attract people to Jesus. This chapter reminds us that Jesus challenged the pre-conceived and small-sized notions people had of him and pushed them to make an all or nothing decision about his identity and importance. He would not allow himself to simply become a miracle-making hero of the masses. Instead, he challenged the people of his day (And us as well, if we are honest with ourselves!) to either follow him with everything they had or to reject him and turn away. Jesus is either everything God intends for us, or he is a dangerous lunatic to be rejected. Which will it be for us? Jesus refuses to be our simple and kind religious leader; he challenges us to see him as our life and our sustenance. The question is not whether we believe this, but whether we live with this conviction as a reality in our daily lives!

Today's Prayer

Father, I confess that I often times want my discipleship made easier. I find I often want your truths to be more easily understood. I love Jesus with all my heart; but for some reason, I find myself not depending upon him as my life and my sustenance. Father, please don't just forgive me, but give me a deeper awareness of my hunger for your Living Bread in my life. Feed me with his life as I seek to place him first in all I do. In his name, Jesus Christ the Lord, I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

Some Jews began to complain about Jesus. They complained because Jesus said, "I am the bread that comes down from heaven." The Jews said, "This is Jesus. We know his father and mother. Jesus is only Joseph's son. How can he say, 'I came down from heaven'?" But Jesus said, "Stop complaining to each other. The Father is the One who sent me. And the Father is the One who brings people to me. I will raise up those people on the last day. If the Father does not bring a person to me, then that person cannot come to me. It is written in the prophets : 'God will teach all the people.' People listen to the Father and learn from him. Those people come to me. I don't mean that anyone has seen the Father. The only person that has ever seen the Father is the One that came from God. That person has seen the Father. I tell you the truth. If a person believes, then that person has life forever. I am the bread that gives life. Your ancestors ate the manna (food) God gave them in the desert. But it didn't keep them from dying. Here is the bread that comes down from heaven. If a person eats this bread, he will never die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If a person eats this bread, then that person will live forever. This bread is my body. I will give my body so that the people in the world can have life." Then the Jews began to argue among themselves. They said, "How can this man give us his body to eat?" Jesus said, "I tell you the truth. You must eat the body of the Son of Man. And you must drink his blood. If you don't do this, then you don't have real life in you. The person that eats my body and drinks my blood has eternal life. I will raise up that person on the last day. My body is true food. My blood is true drink. If a person eats my body and drinks my blood, then that person lives in me, and I live in that person. The Father sent me. The Father lives, and I live because of the Father. So the person that eats me will live because of me. I am not like thebread that our ancestors ate {in the desert}. They ate that bread. But, {like all people}, they died. I am the bread that came down from heaven. The person that eats this bread will live forever." Jesus said all these things while he was teaching in the synagogue in the city of Capernaum.

John 6:41-59

Related Scripture Readings

A {Jewish} leader asked Jesus, "Good teacher, what must I do to get the life that continues forever?" Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? Only God is good. {But I will answer your question.} You know {God's} commands: 'You must not do the sin of adultery, you must not murder anyone, you must not steal anything, you must not tell lies about other people, you must honor (respect) your father and mother

Luke 18:18-27

Jesus continued to say to all of them, "If any person wants to follow me, he must say 'No' to the things he wants. That person must accept the cross (suffering) that is given to him every day, and he must follow me. The person that wants to save his life will lose it. And every person that gives his life for me will save it.

Luke 9:23-24

It is the same for each of you. You must decide if you can leave everything you have to follow me. If not, you cannot be my follower!

Luke 14:33

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.