March 27, 2022
27 Labour 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.
28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?
29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.
30 They said therefore unto him, What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work?
31 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat.
32 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.
33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.
34 Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.
35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
36 But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.
37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
39 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.
40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Verses 32, 33, and 34 remind me very much of Holy Communion. At the time Jesus is telling the disciples about the ‘bread’, they had not yet had that Passover meal in which they learn more fully about the bread being His body. Comparing the manna received in the 40 years of wandering to the bread that will soon be offered to and for us, Jesus is speaking about how the children of Israel were fed, day by day but the Bread Jesus is talking about is ‘once and for all’. Isn’t it curious – I think of the woman at the well who asked of Jesus, “give to me this living water” (water is added to the cup of wine as it is being consecrated) and the disciples say, “Lord, evermore give us this bread”. Both requests, the woman and the disciples, are fulfilled in the Christ. So it was in that day with the disciples and to this very day and, praise God, until the end of the world, we will have the water, the Bread, and the Blood of Him Who gave all that all should live.