John 6:35 Jesus offers Spiritual Fulfillment
“Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”
Jesus Fulfills Spiritual Hunger and Thirst
Within the hearts of mankind there lurks emptiness, a longing that seems impossible to fulfill. For some this is a spiritual longing that they can’t seem to satisfy. It is a hunger and a thirst for a God they do not know.
In a world so full of noise and distractions that they can’t hear His voice, many feel like the ancient Israel the LORD described to the prophet Amos. ““The days are coming.” declares the Sovereign LORD, “when I will send a famine through the land- not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the LORD. Men will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the LORD, but they will not find it. ””
But we are not living in that time. God has sent us his Word, and that Word is Jesus. “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son.” (John 1:1, 14) Jesus offers us the only things that can satisfy our deep spiritual hunger and thirst for Him. That is why He says “I am the bread of life, he who comes to me will never go hungry and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”
How does Jesus satisfy our deep spiritual hunger and thirst?
Our deep spiritual need is really a hunger and thirst for the perfect, unconditional love that can only be given by the God who created us. Our desire is for a personal, intimate acceptance and relationship with Him. Sadly, we cannot obtain this relationship on our own. God is so pure, so holy, and so perfect that anything that is not as pure and perfect is destroyed in his presence. There is not a single person on earth who is worthy to stand in his company and survive. But Jesus was worthy for us. He came to earth as a human and lived the perfect, pure and holy life that we could not, and then was destroyed in our place. He died a death of the condemned, but three days later he rose from the grave so He could offer us the life of the holy. His sacrifice made it possible for us to receive His perfection and purity, enabling us to have the kind of relationship with God our soul desires. If we come to Him, we will never be hungry for unconditional love. If we believe in Him, we will never be thirsty for acceptance and relationship with our Creator.
How do I come to Jesus, what must I believe?
- First, realize that God loves us and wants a relationship with us, but we are unworthy.
- Next, recognize that our unworthiness comes from all the choices that we make that hurt others, ourselves or God. These choices are called sin. We all do it, and we can’t help it. These choices also have consequences, which includes our death. It’s a death of separation. While we live, it’s a separation from joy and peace, followed by our death which is our physical separation from our bodies. But always it’s an eternal separation from God himself, both now and in the afterlife.
- Now, accept the Jesus Christ is God who came to earth and lived a perfect life. This made him worthy to take our punishment for us and die in our place. If we accept his sacrifice, we no longer have to be separated from God because this makes us worthy enough to have a relationship with him. We also believe that three days later, Jesus rose from the grave. He conquered sin and death and proved his power to offer us life, both here on this earth and eternally forever after.
- If we believe this, our response should be one of repentance. Repentance means to make an “about face”, to be heading one direction then turn around and head in the exact opposite direction. This means that we take a look at our life as we have been living it for ourselves and decide that we don’t want that life anymore. We are sorry for how we’ve been living. Instead of continuing along that path, we give our life over to God, making Him our master and deciding to live as He wants us to instead of for ourselves.
- This is what changes our lives. Because of what Jesus did, God now sees us as perfect. But that doesn’t make us perfect. We still sometimes make bad decisions, and we still have consequences for those decisions. The difference is that we are forgiven, and God will always forgive us again when we ask.
- Understand that life isn’t perfect either. In fact, sometimes the life God allows us to have is pretty hard. Thankfully, He doesn’t leave us to live it alone. When we believe in Jesus and decide to follow Him, we are given the Holy Spirit. This means that God is always with us, helping us and giving us direction, encouragement, comfort, strength, wisdom and anything else we need to grow into our relationship with Him.
So when Jesus said He was the Bread of Life, He wasn’t talking about the manna the Jewish crowds were looking for. He wasn’t talking about bread that spoils or only satisfies temporarily. He was talking about his ability to fill us up spiritually and satisfying us eternally. He was describing the benefits of having a soul that is right with its Maker. It is a soul of fullness and peace regardless of our circumstances and can only be found through Jesus Christ.