Video Host: Darin Poe - National Student Discipleship Director
Big Scripture: John 6:22–27,35 (NLT)
22 The next day the crowd that had stayed on the far shore saw that the disciples had taken the only boat, and they realized Jesus had not gone with them. 23 Several boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the Lord had blessed the bread and the people had eaten. 24 So when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went across to Capernaum to look for him. 25 They found him on the other side of the lake and asked, “Rabbi, when did you get here?” 26 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, you want to be with me because I fed you, not because you understood the miraculous signs. 27 But don’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that the Son of Man can give you. For God the Father has given me the seal of his approval.”
35 Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”
So far, in the book of John we have studied two amazing miracles: Jesus feeding thousands of people with five loaves and two fish, AND Jesus walking on the water. Today’s story takes place the very next day. The crowds were looking for Jesus, so they got into boats and followed Him. You might think Jesus would be glad that they were so eager to follow Him, but Jesus knew the reasons they were looking for Him were not right.
The crowd was chasing after Jesus for two wrong reasons. First, they hoped to see more cool miracles. They wanted to be wowed and entertained by something supernatural and sensational. Secondly, they wanted Jesus to continue to meet their natural needs—they wanted Him to keep feeding them! Simply put, they wanted Jesus for what He could do for them. But Jesus doesn’t want us to follow Him because of what we think we can get out of it. When you serve Jesus for your own selfish purposes then you don’t really love Jesus most—you love yourself most! In other words, you don’t see Jesus as the treasure you desire most; you view Him simply as the map to help you find the treasure. This way of thinking isn’t what Jesus wants and it isn’t what you and I need. Jesus is the treasure.
In verse 35, Jesus explains these thoughts using a metaphor. He calls himself “the bread of life.” This means that only Jesus can satisfy and take away our hunger for the wrong things. We should pursue Jesus not for what we can get out of it, but simply because of who He is. He does good, but more importantly He IS GOOD!
What do you like to eat when you are hungry?
Why was the crowd chasing after Jesus? Have you ever “chased” something because of selfish reasons?
Why isn’t it right to follow Jesus for what you can get out of it?
What is a right motivation for following and serving Jesus? How can you make sure your motivations are right?
Help me to serve You and follow You for the right reasons. Holy Spirit, examine my heart and show me any motivations that do not honor You and any habits that are self-serving. Help me to not live for myself, but to live for You. Thank You for sending Jesus to be the bread of life and the living water. Thank You for satisfying the hunger and thirst of my soul. Help me to see You, Jesus, more clearly and to trust You more consistently, more often, always. Thank You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.