8/6/2015 4:35:14 PM
Let them eat bread
John 6:5, "When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, 'Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?'"
Where does a Christian buy bread? The question has nothing to do with where we shop. It has nothing to do with real bread and nothing to do with the money in your wallet that you might spend on bread. Today’s question is really a challenge from Christ. Christ is challenging us to once again look beyond ourselves. Christ is challenging us to put our faith into action. Christ is challenging us to provide the spiritual nourishment that people need. Last week we talked about sharing Christ’s compassion and his compassionate message. Today we talk about a challenge that Christ gave to his disciples when he asked them, “Where are we going to buy bread for these people to eat?”
This challenge that Christ gives us teaches us that we cannot rely on ourselves. That’s what the disciples wanted to do. They wanted to spend enough money to give these people some food. But even then, it would never work.
No, the only answer to Christ’s challenge is Christ himself. He alone had the power to help those people and he alone has the power to help us. His was the power over sin: the power to keep the requirements of the law perfectly; the power to keep his heart and his mind and his intellect pure. His was the power to take his perfect life, his perfect body, his perfect soul and put it up on the altar of the cross as the perfect sacrifice for sin. His was the power to die, to absorb the fire of God’s wrath over sin. His was the power to take your place and my place and die for us. And his was the power to raise his dead body back to life, something no one would have ever imagined or deemed possible.
And it was that same power that enabled him to take a handful of bread and make it feed thousands of people. This is the power of Christ to triumph over sin and death. The same power that filled the stomachs of those people fills our souls with the love and forgiveness. So Christ’s death becomes our life. Christ’s triumph becomes our victory. Christ’s perfection becomes our new life and mind. Christ’s reward becomes our eternal treasure.
And so Christ’s asks you, “Where will we get bread to feed all these people? How will you serve the people in your life?” And you will answer, “Lord, if I’m going to provide for these people, then you’re going to have to give me what I need.”
And he says, "I am the bread of life."