34 Then they said to Him, “Lord, always give us this bread.” 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”
Jesus once again lays it out, just as we saw in John 3:16. I find it interesting that yesterday we saw Jesus explaining the difference between the works of man and the works of God, and yet the people still don’t get it. He puts it more bluntly in this passage, I am the bread of life. In relation to the aforementioned manna, Jesus IS the manna! He is the sustenance of eternal life, He is that which God provided when the people asked and complained about it and what is the response? They yet do not believe.
I find comfort in verse 37. As I prepare my next dissertation on Why We Don’t Believe related to man, I look at verse 37 in a light that is probably a little different. Most of us might look at verse 37 as a standalone statement, we neglect to see that it is actually related to the previous verse. Jesus mentioned unbelief and then throws out there that anyone who comes to Him, He will certainly not cast out. Why does He say this? It is because of our distrust. The salvation that God offers through Jesus is “too good to be true” in human thinking. “You mean this is free? I don’t have to do anything? Certainly this is a trick!” Jesus is letting us know that despite what we have experienced from men, He will not reject us if we come to Him.
Why are we so quick to reject this offer? Why are we afraid to accept the freedom in Christ? As Christians we might have accepted Him to a degree, but have we really accepted Him fully and wholeheartedly? Or do we keep a little for ourselves, “just in case”. In this dialogue, Jesus is claiming to be The Christ, the Son of the Living God. He explains that he is not merely a man born of the earth who has been gifted with The Spirit (as we are), but rather that He has wholly descended from heaven as the ambassador of God.
Why do you refuse to believe? Is it too good to be true? Jesus even says in verse 39 that He has nothing to lose, so why then would He be trying to trick us? As nonbelievers, we look at believing in Jesus as the Christ as some sort of abomination. We look at it as some sort of weakness. We see it as “being duped.” We consider it a shame and a waste of time. Certainly, I wouldn’t want to believe in anything that is like that either. I can look at gravity in the same way. It holds me down, it creates a burden for anything I carry, and it throws me on my face whenever I try to fight against it. Being cynical about it doesn’t change the fact that it exists and my life is that much more difficult by trying to ignore it and fight against it. It’s a struggle of insanity and my entire life will then be consumed by the fight against it…for what? For the self righteousness that I fought against nature? It still wins, it is still there and constant, following the guidelines of its very existence. I can’t ignore it away and the same is true with God and His freedom and salvation. Just because we refuse to believe in it doesn’t mean it no longer exists.
What are you fighting for?