Today, we usually think of bread as an add-on to a meal, but in Jesus’ time bread was an essential of life. In fact, bread was the one thing necessary to sustain life.
When Jesus said “I am the bread of life,” I wonder how many of those listening to Him had been there the day before when Jesus had miraculously fed the 5,000 with only five barley loaves and two fish? The text seems to indicate that those who experienced this miracle are the same ones who are listening to Jesus’ words the next day. But Jesus saw beneath the surface, into their hearts, and He recognized they were seeking Him not because they wanted what He came to give but because they ate their fill of the loaves. Their eyes were on the miracle, not the miracle worker.
In John 6:27, Jesus says, “Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you.” This spiritual food was what Jesus had in mind when He said, “I am the bread of life.” This is the bread that satisfies, that leads to life eternal.
Jesus, You are the true bread of life, the bread that sustains us no matter what we face in this life. Thank You for giving Your flesh as the bread that gives us life.