We are fed by an encounter with Jesus

I am the Bread of Life

Holy Trinity Church, Huddersfield, Sunday 12th January 2020

Alpha and Omega, detail from the east window in Holy Trinity Church, Huddersfield.

A blustery winter’s morning. My wife Linda and I walked to church with only a little rain on us. On the way home we went through the park on my suggestion as the rain seemed to have dried up. Bad idea, we got caught in the next squall, which we could have avoided if we had walked straight home after the service. That’s British winter weather for you, changeable.

I was not in the worship band this morning, I had put myself down as unavailable because of my birthday this month and my wife sometimes takes me for a weekend somewhere else. This year was not one of those, but we are having a meal and a stayover followed by breakfast on the day of my birthday, Tuesday. I am looking forward to that.

This week was the second in our series, “I am– Jesus in his own words.” This week “I am the bread of life.” Vicar Mike started the sermon by saying that there were two foodstuffs he could not give up, bacon and bread. I had started the day with a bacon and egg sandwich which combines them both so I sympathised with that.

The sermon was based on the passage in John’s Gospel where Jesus says, “I am the Bread of Life, John 6:25–51. Bread is a bye word for what we need.
Jesus said I am the bread of life, the bread that leads to eternal life shortly after 5000 men and possibly another 5000 women and children were fed with a tiny amount of food. The people there could look back to the Exodus when God literally gave bread from heaven. They saw a parallel with Moses.

Jesus did not say, “I know where to find bread,” or, “I have a great recipe.” Jesus said,  “I am the bread of life. Your forefathers ate the manna and died.” Just in the same way as those who ate the bread and fish would die afterwards. They failed to realise that the man who gave bread was the one who could meet their deepest spiritual life. Death is not the end. They wanted Jesus to make more food so that they could feel full again. They failed to realise that Jesus could not just to fill your stomach but save your life.

Jesus offered himself and offers us everything. But you have to receive Jesus to get everything.

Do you put your trust in Jesus who is the bread of life. He said, “Whoever comes to me I will never drive away.” It’s not for a few but for everyone. Have you received him?

Jesus is the one that satisfies. The people were looking because they had their fill. They were not satisfied. They wanted to be full again.

There is a God shaped vacuum in the heart of a person that can only be filled with God himself. We try to fill the vacuum with something else. Faith becomes a formula, if I do x and y I get z from God. In v35 Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” ” We need Jesus. We are fed by an encounter with Jesus.

If you have never given your life to Jesus turn to him now, he will not turn you away.

For the rest: Who are your energies focused on? Our encounter may feel like a distant memory, relationship and intimacy with God seen like unreality. Put away the things that do not satisfy, come back to the God who satisfies.

Say, “I want to be hungry for God.”


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