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Bible Commentaries

Charles Box's Commentaries on Selected Books of the Bible
John 6

 

 

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Introduction

Jesus Is The Bread Of Life
- John Six -

John six allows us to look at both the power and the wisdom of the Lord Jesus. Jesus put Philip to the test to show where he stood in the faith. "When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? And this he said to prove him." (John 6:5-6) Jesus wanted Philip and us to understand the greatness of His power. Jesus" ministry now became much more public. However, He would not allow Himself to be crowned as an earthly king. "When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force, to make him a king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone." (John 6:15) This showed Christ"s concern for a spiritual kingdom, the church instead of a literal kingdom on earth.

The feeding of the five thousand is the only miracle that is recounted in all four gospels. (Matthew 14:13-23, Mark 6:30-46, Luke 9:10-17, John 6:1-15) Jesus gave the people bread made from barley and fish. He would soon offer them "the Bread of Life." In John six we observe as Jesus amazed His disciples as He walked to them on the sea. (John 6:16-21) John does not mention Peter walking on the water. When Jesus was walking on water toward the boat He said, "It is I, be not afraid." These miracles show Jesus" power over nature. In John six Jesus described Himself as the Bread of Life. "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." (John 6:35) Jesus came to this earth to do the will of God. (John 6:38) He said we must eat his flesh and drink His blood. This means we must assimilate or digest Him into our lives. After hearing this teaching many of the disciples went back to walk no more with Him. (John 6:66) The disciples would not leave Jesus. Jesus said to the twelve, "Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God." (John 6:67-69)


Verses 1-14

The feeding of the 5000 -- John 6:1-14 : The feeding of the 5,000 is the only miracle recorded by all the gospel writers other than those miracles associated with Jesus" death and resurrection. A great multitude followed Jesus because they had seen His miracles. Jesus asked Philip where they could buy food for so many people. He was testing Philip. Philip saw feeding the multitude as an impossible task. Andrew saw some resources but they were so small; five barley loaves and two small fish. The people were fed in an orderly way. "Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would." (John 6:10-11) They sat in small groups and about 5,000 men beside women and children were fed. The food was given to the people only after it was blessed or thanks was given for it. Everyone ate what they wanted and "they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten." (John 6:13) There was more food left than there was at the beginning! The reaction of those who saw the miracle was "This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world." (John 6:14)


Verses 15-21

Jesus walked on the water -- John 6:15-21 : The people were determined to make Jesus an earthly king. However, that was not His purpose in coming to this earth. Jesus" kingdom is a spiritual kingdom, His church. So Jesus just left them and departed into a mountain alone. While Jesus was alone in the mountain the disciples went across the Sea of Galilee or Sea of Tiberias by boat. The sea was violent that night. Storms are quite common on the Sea of Galilee. Between 3 AM to 6 AM (the fourth watch) Jesus came to them walking on the sea. He not only walked but he caught up with the boat as He walked. The disciples, at first, thought Jesus was a ghost. Jesus said, "It is I be not afraid." The other accounts tell us that Peter was allowed to walk on the water also. We are told that they received Jesus into the boat and then immediately arrived at their destination. "Then they willingly received him into the ship: and immediately the ship was at the land whither they went." (John 6:21) These are other great miracles that prove Jesus" claim to be the Son of God.


Verses 22-65

Teaching about the Bread of Life -- John 6:22-65 : On the next day the multitude realized that Jesus was gone and they went to find Him. The people asked Jesus how or when He got to Capernaum. Jesus rebuked the people for their attitude concerning His miracles. He said they followed Him because He fed them and not because He is the Son of God. He knew their hearts and their motives. Jesus wanted them to understand that spiritual food was what they needed and not the physical bread. Physical things are relatively unimportant because they perish. Jesus desired that people do the work of God and believe on Him. (John 6:29) Faith is described as the work of God. Jesus said that in Old Testament days God fed the people with manna. Now He identifies Himself as the true bread which came down from heaven. Jesus is the bread of life. We must take him unto our life and allow Him to feed our soul. We must take Jesus into our life, digest Him or assimilate Him into our being. Only those who choose to take Jesus into their lives are saved by Him. Many of the Jews saw and believed His miracles but rejected His message. Let us hear and learn and come to Jesus in humble obedience. (John 6:44-45) Jesus is the living bread and it is in Him that we have hope of spiritual life. "He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him." (John 6:56) The Lord gave us Spirit given words so that we could take Him into our lives.


Verses 66-71

Some go away from Jesus -- John 6:66-71 : Jesus knew that some would not believe. He even knew about Judas. All who hear of Jesus have the opportunity to believe. Sadly, some rejected Jesus. "From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him." (John 6:66) Some who at first show interest in Jesus later reject Him. The teachings of Jesus draw some who are willing to become disciples. The same teachings drive away those who are not willing to become true Christians. Jesus asked, the twelve, "Will ye also go away?" (John 6:67) Peter gave a strong reason why the disciples would not leave Jesus. He said, "Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God." (John 6:68-69) Jesus even identified Judas as a devil who would betray Him. What will you do with Jesus?

 


Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition available at BibleSupport.com. Public Domain.

Bibliography Information
Box, Charles. "Commentary on John 6:4". "Charles Box's Commentaries on Selected books of the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/box/john-6.html. 2014.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, August 18th, 2019
the Week of Proper 15 / Ordinary 20
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