John 6:1-21 — Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand and Walks on Water
John 6:22-71 — I Am the Bread of Life, Eternal Life
John 7:1-24 — Jesus at the Feast of the Booths
John 7:25-52 — The People Question Jesus’ Identity and Purpose
Thoughts about serving others
This link includes a list of posts about Serving the Least, the Lost, and the Lonely.
My prayer is for you to join me on this journey. Subscribe to this blog below to get an email when a new post is available.
Let the Word evoke words. May your life encourage lives.
2 Replies to “Aug 11 — John 6-7”
Jesus’ teaching caused quite a stir among the religious leaders of the time, not surprising since he was upsetting their establishment in many ways. What sticks out to me is this: “For even his own brothers did no believe in him” (John 7:5). They grew up with their older brother, like the Rich Mullins song “Boy Like Me” entreats us, “You was a boy like I was once But was You a boy like me Well, I grew up around Indiana You grew up around Galilee.” The whole concept of Jesus coming as flesh and blood, growing up from a baby is amazing. Last night I held Erik and Bethany’s little boy Abram…only 17 hours after birth. What a beautiful sight.
I’m reminded of how difficult it must have been for Jesus’ family to accept his call, his ministry. “Jesus’ brothers said to him ‘Leave Galilee and go to Judea, so that your disciples there may see the works you do” (7:3). His brothers are nearly taunting him, hey brother, “no one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret” (7:4a). Jesus doesn’t rebuke them, merely tells them “My time is not yet here” (7:6). This is his family talking to him. I get the sense that he gives them special grace, knowing they will witness the unthinkable in a short time. We don’t know details about all of them, but we do know that James comes around at some point. It’s just cool to see how much grace he gives his family, the space he gives them to be human. In all things, Jesus was truly amazing. Thanks Lord for this lesson today.
Philip’s reaction to Jesus’ question, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” (John 6:5), is priceless. “Philip answered him, ‘It would take more than half a year’s wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!'” (6:7). Five thousand men were gathered, not counting the women and children (Matthew 14:21), for the Jews didn’t allow women and children to eat with the men in public. Strange. Different times and customs. Sometimes difficult for us to understand, yet Jesus feeds them all, probably more than 10,000?? Who knows? The head count is not the point. Jesus preaches to this massive crowd, then slips away before they can reach him, he “withdrew again to a mountain by himself” (John 6:15). This must have been confusing to the people, but apparently the disciples were used to this by now because the next thing we read is the disciples are in a boat heading for Capernaum without their leader.
After rowing 3 or 4 miles, Jesus walks out to them on the water. This supernatural event frightens them (it would certainly have that affect on me!), but they hear his voice and recognize it really is Jesus, so the took him into the boat, “and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading” (6:21). I’ve been on large lakes when the winds crop up out of nowhere, it’s a dreadful experience. Arriving safely is a great relief, the experience not soon forgotten. Here, the disciples get transported to their destination immediately. How? No clue. Just a passing phrase with no additional explanation, so this must not be the important part of the story.
Jesus knows their hearts, they are longing for the king that will ride majestically and triumphantly grant their every desire. One who would wipe out the oppressive Romans and show the world the Jews were righteous after all! But this is not God’s plan for redemption, his plan includes everyone, Jew and Gentile, all are to be invited into the kingdom. Jesus explains that which most would not understand,
The people grumble. They recognize this is the man who was once the boy that grew up in front of them, “How can he now say, ‘I came down from heaven’?” (6:42). Teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum, Jesus provides a new requirement, “unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you” (6:53). This is confusing to read even today, so I must admit I understand their reaction: “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” (6:60). The tension mounts and many begin to gather in circles to discuss how they can rid themselves of Jesus, “looking for a way to kill him” (7:1).
There were those who thought Jesus was a good man and others who thought of him as a deceiver (7:12-13). Jesus attempts to give them perspective and tells them, “Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly” (7:24). Wow! That’s much harder than it sounds, Lord! Please give us discernment and wisdom so we can judge correctly.