Yesterday I spoke about how Jesus is the Bread of Life from John 6:35. Quick background if you are unfamiliar with this passage. Jesus has just fed around 15,000 people by the Sea of Galilee and his followers recognize this as being a Messianic sign from God. As a result, they take action to make him king. But Jesus, perceiving their actions, leaves with his disciples and travels across the Sea of Galilee and into a synagogue of Capernaum. Realizing the source of their free lunch had left them, this crowd takes off across the sea in pursuit of Jesus. Reason: They wanted Jesus for what he could do for them but they did not want Jesus for who he was.
Discovering Jesus, they state to him in verses 25-26, “Rabbi, when did you come here?” Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves." Verse 14 points out that they had indeed seen the sign of prophecy, likely from Deuteronomy 18:15-19. They understood that this miracle pointed them to a Messiah. However, they bypassed what this meant because they already had their preconceived ideas of who THEY believed Jesus should be and what THEY believed Jesus should.
Unfortunately, being a "free lunch" Christian continues to be a problem in today's culture. I grow concerned that an increasing number of people have adopted the Christian label out of convenience without ever giving thought about the lifestyle that naturally comes along with this label. They like the thought of Jesus being their friend to call on when they are in trouble or their source of help when they get in a jam but they have little interest in aligning their will with the will of Christ's.
Later on in John 6 when Jesus explains his fuller identity, these same people who pursued him for a free lunch were quick to make their exit. At the end of the day, they wanted a Jesus of their own making. They wanted someone who would be a prophet and king on THEIR terms and not on his terms.
But as John Piper so beautifully points out, "Jesus Christ did not come to give bread. He came to BE bread." This is a subtle but monumental difference. He did not come to merely be your personal assistant. He came to be your Lord and Saviour.
Several weeks ago I heard Timothy Keller tell the story of how a woman Bible teacher gave an illustration back in 1970 that changed his life. She noted that if the distance between the earth and the sun (93 million miles) was reduced to the distance between a sheet of paper, The distance between the earth and the nearest star would be a stack of paper 70 feet high. The diameter of the galaxy would be a stack of paper 310 miles high. Yet the galaxy is nothing but a speck of dust in a whole universe and the Bible says that Jesus Christ holds the universe in his hand or with his pinky. At the end of this grand explanation she asked her audience, “Is this the kind of person that you ask into your life to be your assistant?”
Jesus Christ came to this earth not to be your personal assistant. He did not just come to give you bread. He came to Be bread.