John 6:35 MEANING

John 6:35
(35) I am the bread of life.--Comp. again the conversation with the woman of Samaria. Here they have asked for "this bread," the bread which giveth life, as distinct from that which perisheth. It is now present with them. He is that bread, whose characteristic is life. He is the Word of God, revealing God to man, teaching the eternal truths which are the life of the spirit just as bread is of the body.

He that cometh to me . . . he that believeth on me.--The natural bread satisfied no need unless it was appropriated and eaten. Prompted by hunger, they had taken into hand and mouth the loaves He had given them, and were filled. The same law holds for the spiritual bread. It is taken by him who comes to Christ; it is eaten by him who believes on Him, and it satisfies every need. It sustains the spiritual life in strength, and refreshes it in weariness. The bread of life giveth a principle of life, and he who hungereth and thirsteth for it shall also be filled, but with that which abideth, so that he shall never hunger and shall never thirst. (Comp. Matthew 5:6.)

Verse 35. - [But, or then] Jesus said to them, now dropping all disguise, and gathering up into one burning word all the previous teaching, which they might have fathomed, but did not. I am the Bread of life; or "that which cometh down out of heaven, the veritable life-eternal-giving Bread, which I, as the steward of the Divine bounty, am giving, is my very self, my Divine humanity." On other occasions the Lord said, "I am the Light of the world" (John 8:12), "I am the good Shepherd" (John 10:14), "I am the Resurrection and the Life" (John 11:25), "I am the veritable Vine" (John 15:1). He claims here to be giving himself to the world, as the Source of its true life. The mode in which any human being can so assimilate this Bread that it should accomplish its purposes and transform itself into life, is by "coming" or "believing." The two terms are parallel, though in "craning" there is more emphasis laid on the distinct act of the will than in "believing." The process is very impressively conveyed. He who has started to come, he that is coming to me, shall by no means hunger; he that is believing on me - endeavouring to effect such inward approval and surrender - shall never thirst (the πώποτε responds here to the πάντοτε). There is no special significance in the two-foldness of the parallel. "Coming" does not stand in any more immediate relation to "eating" than to "drinking," to the satisfaction of hunger than to that of thirst, nor does "believing" connote exclusively either the one or the other. The parallelism is a strengthening of the same idea. Approach to himself, believing surrender to the reality of his word, will satisfy the most pressing spiritual need, and do it in such a way that the hunger and thirst shall not, shall never, return. There is an invincible and unalterable assent produced by a real apprehension of Christ, which cannot be shaken out of the soul. Satisfaction of hunger may possibly (as Godet suggests) point to the supply of strength, and the appeasing of thirst to the supply of peace. The deeper idea is that the desire of the soul is satisfied, and it is not a recurrent desire. There are certain realities which, if once perceived, can never be unknown afterwards. There are consolations which, if once supplied, absolutely stanch and heal the wounds of the soul. Christ, in "coming down from heaven," by revealing the Divine Sonship in a Son of man. brings all heaven with him, opens all the Father's heart. To come to him and to believe on him is to feed on the corn of heaven and drink of that river of life, clear as crystal, which is ever issuing from the throne of God and of the Lamb.

6:28-35 Constant exercise of faith in Christ, is the most important and difficult part of the obedience required from us, as sinners seeking salvation. When by his grace we are enabled to live a life of faith in the Son of God, holy tempers follow, and acceptable services may be done. God, even his Father, who gave their fathers that food from heaven to support their natural lives, now gave them the true Bread for the salvation of their souls. Coming to Jesus, and believing on him, signify the same. Christ shows that he is the true Bread; he is to the soul what bread is to the body, nourishes and supports the spiritual life. He is the Bread of God. Bread which the Father gives, which he has made to be the food of our souls. Bread nourishes only by the powers of a living body; but Christ is himself living Bread, and nourishes by his own power. The doctrine of Christ crucified is now as strengthening and comforting to a believer as ever it was. He is the Bread which came down from heaven. It denotes the Divinity of Christ's person and his authority; also, the Divine origin of all the good which flows to us through him. May we with understanding and earnestness say, Lord, evermore give us this Bread.And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life,.... Christ is so called, because he gives life to dead sinners: men in a state of nature are dead in trespasses and sins; and whatever they feed upon tends to death; Christ, the true bread, only gives life, which is conveyed by the word, and made effectual by the Spirit: and because he supports and maintains the life he gives; it is not in the power of a believer to support the spiritual life he has; nor can he live on anything short of Christ; and there is enough in Christ for him to live upon: and because he quickens, and makes the saints lively in the exercise of grace, and discharge of duty, and renews their spiritual strength, and secures for them eternal life.

He that cometh to me shall never hunger; not corporeally to hear him preach, or preached, or merely to his ordinances, to baptism, or the Lord's table; but so as to believe in him, feed, and live upon him, as the next clause explains it:

and he that believeth on me shall never thirst; and which is owing, not to the power and will of man, but to divine teachings, and the powerful drawings of the efficacious grace of God; see John 6:44. Now of such it is said, that they shall never hunger and thirst; which is true of them in this life, though not to be understood as there were no sinful desires in them; much less, that there are no spiritual hungerings and thirstings after they are come to Christ; but that they shall not desire any other food but Christ; they shall be satisfied with him; nor shall they hereafter be in a starving and famishing condition, or want any good thing: and in the other world there will be no desires after that which is sinful, nor indeed after outward ordinances, in order to enjoy communion with God in them, as now, for they will then be needless; nor shall they have any uneasy desires after Christ, and his grace, and the enjoyment of him, since he will be all in all to them.

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