Our staple diet - Hope 103.2

Our staple diet

By David ReayTuesday 2 Feb 2016LifeWords DevotionalsFaithReading Time: 0 minutes


Read John 6:48-51

48-51 I’m telling you the most solemn and sober truth now: Whoever believes in me has real life, eternal life. I am the Bread of Life. Your ancestors ate the manna bread in the desert and died. But now here is Bread that truly comes down out of heaven. Anyone eating this Bread will not die, ever. I am the Bread—living Bread!—who came down out of heaven. Anyone who eats this Bread will live—and forever! The Bread that I present to the world so that it can eat and live is myself, this flesh-and-blood self.” (THE MESSAGE)

As the Second World War drew to a close, the allied authorities had to house, clothe and feed thousands of displaced children. Many were distressed, especially at bedtime. It seems their experienced deprivation caused them to wonder if they would have food the next day. So someone got the idea of giving a small loaf of bread to the children the night before. Holding on to this tonight assured them they would have food tomorrow.

This bread was a promise of life. When Jesus speaks of being the bread of life he is saying he is the source of true life, eternal life. The manna in the desert, the bread he miraculously provided to the 5000, keeps people alive for a time. Jesus can assure us of life everlasting. Without bread we cannot live. Without Jesus we cannot live forever.

His hearers misunderstood him. They thought literally while he spoke metaphorically. He invited them to embrace him as the means by which they got right with God. He called on them to see him as the one great necessity of life, the one who could give meaning to all else in life.

Those who couldn’t get the point deserted him. Those who scratched their heads at what he said but figured there was something in it went on following him—and scratching their heads. We who read these words perhaps can better see their symbolic meaning—and go on clinging to the bread that promises life.

David Reay