One of the hallmarks of the Jewish faith is the festivals commemorating significant events in their history. Two of them, the Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles, are prominent in John 6 and 7.
Before the Passover, Jesus fed five thousand people with just five barley loaves and two fish. The next day the people were back again looking for another sign. Instead of seeking Jesus, the producer of the signs, they were simply seeking the gift. In light of this heart attitude, Jesus proclaimed:
“I am the bread of life,” Jesus told them. “No one who comes to me will ever be hungry, and no one who believes in me will ever be thirsty again. (John 6:34)
All the signs Jesus performed pointed to Himself as Savior, the One who, empowered by the Father, could save souls and offer eternity. All anyone needed to do, must do, is believe in Him as the Son of God.
At the Feast of Tabernacles, Jesus taught in the temple. He proclaimed Himself as the source of Living Water, which would quench every thirst. It was a foreshadowing of the Holy Spirit, given to everyone who believes in Jesus as Savior.
Jesus was always pointing to the Father as the source of His authority, teachings, and signs. Jesus was the way to be rescued, not for temporal things, but for eternity. This is still true today. Jesus I,s and always will be, the Bread of Life, the Living Water, the Way to eternity.
I leave you with the words of Peter (John 6:68-69). As you ponder them, may they resonate in your spirit and turn you ever closer to Jesus.
“Lord, to whom will we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.”
1) Pull out your Bible and read John 6 and John 7 fully through 3 times. Read slowly, emphasizing different words each time. Let the words of Scripture wash over you as the Spirit speaks to your heart.
2) Each time you read, write down everything that pops out at you, makes you curious, or wonder “why?”. When you’re finished, go back through and you’ll be amazed at the new things the Spirit is leading you into knowing about Him!
3) Write out a prayer of thanks to God for being the Bread of Life and the Living Water. Ask Him to help you to live focusing on Him as our source of life here and in eternity. Praise Him for all the ways He shows Himself to you.
4) Memorize John 12:25-26
After this, Jesus crossed the Sea of Galilee (or Tiberias). 2 A huge crowd was following him because they saw the signs that he was performing by healing the sick. 3 Jesus went up a mountain and sat down there with his disciples. 4 Now the Passover, a Jewish festival, was near. 5 So when Jesus looked up and noticed a huge crowd coming toward Him, He asked Philip, “Where will we buy bread so that these people can eat?” 6 He asked this to test him, for He himself knew what He was going to do.
7 Philip answered him, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread wouldn’t be enough for each of them to have a little.”
8 One of His disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to Him, 9 “There’s a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish—but what are they for so many?”
10 Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” There was plenty of grass in that place; so they sat down. The men numbered about five thousand. 11 Then Jesus took the loaves, and after giving thanks he distributed them to those who were seated—so also with the fish, as much as they wanted.
12 When they were full, He told His disciples, “Collect the leftovers so that nothing is wasted.” 13 So they collected them and filled twelve baskets with the pieces from the five barley loaves that were left over by those who had eaten.
14 When the people saw the sign He had done, they said, “This truly is the Prophet who is to come into the world.”
15 Therefore, when Jesus realized that they were about to come and take Him by force to make him king, He withdrew again to the mountain by Himself.
16 When evening came, His disciples went down to the sea, 17 got into a boat, and started across the sea to Capernaum. Darkness had already set in, but Jesus had not yet come to them. 18 A high wind arose, and the sea began to churn. 19 After they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the sea. He was coming near the boat, and they were afraid. 20 But He said to them, “It is I. Don’t be afraid.” 21 Then they were willing to take him on board, and at once the boat was at the shore where they were heading.
22 The next day, the crowd that had stayed on the other side of the sea saw there had been only one boat. They also saw that Jesus had not boarded the boat with His disciples, but that His disciples had gone off alone. 23 Some boats from Tiberias came near the place where they had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24 When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor His disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum looking for Jesus. 25 When they found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”
26 Jesus answered, “Truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate the loaves and were filled. 27 Don’t work for the food that perishes but for the food that lasts for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set his seal of approval on him.”
28 “What can we do to perform the works of God?” they asked.
29 Jesus replied, “This is the work of God—that you believe in the one he has sent.”
30 “What sign, then, are you going to do so that we may see and believe you?” they asked. “What are you going to perform? 31 Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, just as it is written: He gave them bread from heaven to eat.”
32 Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, Moses didn’t give you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
34 Then they said, “Sir, give us this bread always.”
35 “I am the bread of life,” Jesus told them. “No one who comes to me will ever be hungry, and no one who believes in me will ever be thirsty again. 36 But as I told you, you’ve seen me, and yet you do not believe. 37 Everyone the Father gives me will come to me, and the one who comes to me I will never 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 I should lose none of those he has given me but should raise them up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of my Father: that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him will have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”
41 Therefore the Jews started grumbling about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” 42 They were saying, “Isn’t this Jesus the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”
43 Jesus answered them, “Stop grumbling among yourselves. 44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up on the last day. 45 It is written in the Prophets: And they will all be taught by God. Everyone who has listened to and learned from the Father comes to me— 46 not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God. He has seen the Father.
47 “Truly I tell you, anyone who believes has eternal life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. 50 This is the bread that comes down from heaven so that anyone may eat of it and not die. 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread he will live forever. The bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”
52 At that, the Jews argued among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life in yourselves. 54 The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day, 55 because my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink. 56 The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven; it is not like the manna your ancestors ate—and they died. The one who eats this bread will live forever.”
59 He said these things while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum.
60 Therefore, when many of his disciples heard this, they said, “This teaching is hard. Who can accept it?”
61 Jesus, knowing in Himself that His disciples were grumbling about this, asked them, “Does this offend you? 62 Then what if you were to observe the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? 63 The Spirit is the one who gives life. The flesh doesn’t help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. 64 But there are some among you who don’t believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning those who did not believe and the one who would betray him.) 65 He said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to Me unless it is granted to him by the Father.”
66 From that moment many of his disciples turned back and no longer accompanied him. 67 So Jesus said to the Twelve, “You don’t want to go away too, do you?”
68 Simon Peter answered, “Lord, to whom will we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.”
70 Jesus replied to them, “Didn’t I choose you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil.” 71 He was referring to Judas, Simon Iscariot’s son, one of the Twelve, because he was going to betray him.
After this, Jesus traveled in Galilee, since He did not want to travel in Judea because the Jews were trying to kill him. 2 The Jewish Festival of Shelters was near. 3 So his brothers said to him, “Leave here and go to Judea so that your disciples can see your works that you are doing. 4 For no one does anything in secret while he’s seeking public recognition. If you do these things, show yourself to the world.” 5 (For not even his brothers believed in him.)
6 Jesus told them, “My time has not yet arrived, but your time is always at hand. 7 The world cannot hate you, but it does hate me because I testify about it—that its works are evil. 8 Go up to the festival yourselves. I’m not going up to this festival, because my time has not yet fully come.” 9 After he had said these things, he stayed in Galilee.
10 After His brothers had gone up to the festival, then he also went up, not openly but secretly. 11 The Jews were looking for him at the festival and saying, “Where is he?” 12 And there was a lot of murmuring about him among the crowds. Some were saying, “He’s a good man.” Others were saying, “No, on the contrary, he’s deceiving the people.” 13 Still, nobody was talking publicly about him for fear of the Jews.
14 When the festival was already half over, Jesus went up into the temple and began to teach. 15 Then the Jews were amazed and said, “How is this man so learned, since he hasn’t been trained?”
16 Jesus answered them, “My teaching isn’t mine but is from the one who sent Me. 17 If anyone wants to do his will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own. 18 The one who speaks on his own seeks his own glory; but he who seeks the glory of the one who sent him is true, and there is no unrighteousness in him. 19 Didn’t Moses give you the law? Yet none of you keeps the law. Why are you trying to kill me?”
20 “You have a demon!” the crowd responded. “Who is trying to kill you?”
21 “I performed one work, and you are all amazed,” Jesus answered. 22 “This is why Moses has given you circumcision —not that it comes from Moses but from the fathers —and you circumcise a man on the Sabbath. 23 If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath so that the law of Moses won’t be broken, are you angry at me because I made a man entirely well on the Sabbath? 24 Stop judging according to outward appearances; rather judge according to righteous judgment.”
25 Some of the people of Jerusalem were saying, “Isn’t this the man they are trying to kill? 26 Yet, look, he’s speaking publicly and they’re saying nothing to him. Can it be true that the authorities know he is the Messiah? 27 But we know where this man is from. When the Messiah comes, nobody will know where he is from.”
28 As he was teaching in the temple, Jesus cried out, “You know me and you know where I am from. Yet I have not come on my own, but the one who sent me is true. You don’t know him; 29 I know him because I am from him, and he sent me.”
30 Then they tried to seize him. Yet no one laid a hand on him because his hour had not yet come. 31 However, many from the crowd believed in him and said, “When the Messiah comes, he won’t perform more signs than this man has done, will he?” 32 The Pharisees heard the crowd murmuring these things about him, and so the chief priests and the Pharisees sent servants to arrest him.
33 Then Jesus said, “I am only with you for a short time. Then I’m going to the one who sent me. 34 You will look for me, but you will not find me; and where I am, you cannot come.”
35 Then the Jews said to one another, “Where does he intend to go that we won’t find him? He doesn’t intend to go to the Jewish people dispersed among the Greeks and teach the Greeks, does he? 36 What is this remark he made: ‘You will look for me, and you will not find me; and where I am, you cannot come’?”
37 On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. 38 The one who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him.” 39 He said this about the Spirit. Those who believed in Jesus were going to receive the Spirit, for the Spirit had not yet been given because Jesus had not yet been glorified.
40 When some from the crowd heard these words, they said, “This truly is the Prophet.” 41 Others said, “This is the Messiah.” But some said, “Surely the Messiah doesn’t come from Galilee, does he? 42 Doesn’t the Scripture say that the Messiah comes from David’s offspring and from the town of Bethlehem, where David lived?” 43 So the crowd was divided because of him. 44 Some of them wanted to seize him, but no one laid hands on him.
45 Then the servants came to the chief priests and Pharisees, who asked them, “Why didn’t you bring him?”
46 The servants answered, “No man ever spoke like this!”
47 Then the Pharisees responded to them, “Are you fooled too? 48 Have any of the rulers or Pharisees believed in him? 49 But this crowd, which doesn’t know the law, is accursed.”
50 Nicodemus—the one who came to him previously and who was one of them—said to them, 51 “Our law doesn’t judge a man before it hears from him and knows what he’s doing, does it?”
52 “You aren’t from Galilee too, are you?” they replied. “Investigate and you will see that no prophet arises from Galilee.”
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!