The message of John the Baptist and of Jesus to the people and the church-leadership was “[Change]! Repent.” The Kingdom of God is at hand. The Jews murmured at this because Jesus didn’t fit their ideas. This is also true in our generation. Jesus instructed people to look for the anti-Christ, tribulation, persecution, death – and resurrection. He did not speak of “a rapture escape” or of going-to-heaven-when-we-die. Don’t take offense. Repent. Change.
Ch. 38 – Jesus Speaks of the Bread of Life
The next day the people on the shore he had left sought Jesus but could not find him. They knew that no boat had been there but the one his disciples had entered, and they knew Jesus had not entered it with them.
Many other boats came to the place where he fed the five thousand. Those on these ships, hearing that Jesus was gone, sailed to Capernaum, taking with them many from the shore who were also searching for Jesus.
They found Jesus teaching in a synagogue in Capernaum and they said to him:
“Master, when camest thou hither?”
Jesus answered them, saying:
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, ‘Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.’ Labor not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you; for him hath God the Father sealed.”
They said to him:
“What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?”
“This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.”
Then they asked him:
“What sign showest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? What dost thou work?
Our fathers ate manna in the desert; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from Heaven to eat.’”
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, ‘Moses gave you not that bread from Heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from Heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from Heaven, and giveth life unto the world.’”
“Lord, evermore give us this bread.”
“I am the bread of life. He that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. But I said unto you that ye also have seen me and believe not. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from Heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that everyone which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”
The Jews murmured against him because he had said that he was the bread which had come down from Heaven. They asked:
“Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that he saith, ‘I came down from Heaven’?”
Jesus replied to them:
“Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him; and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall be all taught of God.’ Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. Verily, verily, U say unto you, ‘He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.’ I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead.
This is the bread which cometh down from Heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from Heaven. If any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
Perplexed, the Jews asked among each other:
“How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, ‘Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.’ Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father, so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.
This is that bread which came down from Heaven; not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead; he that eateth of this bread shall live forever.”
Many of his followers murmured among themselves:
“This is a hard saying. Who can hear it?”
Jesus, knowing what went on in the minds of his followers, asked:
“Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing. The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you that believe not.”
Jesus had known from the beginning the ones who had not believed and who would betray him. He said:
“Therefore said I unto you that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.”
From that moment many of his followers abandoned him and no longer walked with him.
Jesus turned to the twelve and asked:
“Will ye also go away?”
Simon Peter answered him:
“Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.”
“Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?”
He spoke of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, for he was the one of the twelve who later would betray Jesus.