Sabbath 1/24/15 Daytona SDB Church Pastor Wray sermon The Bread of Life

Sabbath 1/24/15 Daytona SDB Church Pastor Wray sermon The Bread of Life John 6:35

The scripture makes the statement that Jesus is the Bread of Life. Whoever believes in Him shall never hunger or thirst. I ask the question, have you ever really felt hungry? Some of us have but have you ever been really, really hungry with a big aching feeling? This is when you feel like you can eat anything that you can get your hands on. Today I want to talk about a different kind of hunger, not a physical hunger but a spiritual hunger. A spiritual hunger that is a real craving to meet, be near and close to God. A passionate desire to be filled and filled again with the blessings of the Holy Spirit. Unless you have experienced this spiritual hunger, you won’t fully understand the sense of our text this morning.

Jesus said because He is the Bread of Life, they who come to Him will never go hungry. He who believes in Him will never go thirsty. Jesus was not talking about eating and drinking food. He is talking about having a deep hunger to find answers to the questions that each of us have inside of us. A passion to find meaning and purpose in our lives. As we meet this morning in Sabbath service, there are people outside, all around us who are trying to satisfy this passion for meaning with drugs, alcohol and witchcraft. For a long time now, people have given up looking to the church for answers to their questions. This is because all they can see are buildings that are filled once a week with lukewarm believers that don’t really want to be filled with the blessings of the Holy Spirit. So this morning I want all of us to think about what it means for us to come to Jesus. Back when I was a kid, we had a song “Come to Jesus, Come to Jesus just now”.

  1. Coming to Jesus Means to Believe in Him: Jesus said to the crowds that they are to believe in the One that God had sent to them. Jesus also said he who believes has everlasting life. Jesus makes it clear that to come to Jesus means to believe in Him. Not simply to know about Him or just to acknowledge Him. Many folk are willing to acknowledge Him as some great teacher. But Jesus is insisting that we put our trust and faith in Him. Believing in Jesus is to have an ongoing, deepening relationship with Him. We must have an ongoing, growing relationship with Jesus Christ. Some people, when asked, simply will say “I have faith”. As far as they are concerned, faith is something you either have or don’t have. Faith is something kept in a drawer for special occasions. That is not what Jesus is talking about. He is talking about a living, growing relationship where month by month and year by year, we know Jesus better.
  2. To Come to Jesus is to Spend Time with Him Regularly: Jesus declares himself to be the Bread of Life. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if someone invented a special food that meant we didn’t have to eat again for a long time? I know some of you would be delighted. But I like to eat. Eating is a pleasant time for most of us. Late one night my daughter raided the cookie jar and she just enjoyed herself some cookies! Since no special food has been invented, we all need to eat and drink at regular intervals to stay healthy and fit. This also is what we need to do to stay spiritually healthy. Jesus is our Bread of Life and we need to feed on Him regularly. We cannot just come to church, declare our faith in Christ and go on living as before. We need regular times that we read the Bible, pray and find out about the one who promises us eternal life.
  3. Coming to Jesus Means a Change in Lifestyle: Being a Christian still means living in a real world with our busy lives. We must not get distracted by life and make other things more important than doing Jesus’s will. It means making space and time each day when we spend time discovering more about our wonderful savior. Jesus longs for us to discover the fullness of life in Him. This is not new because Paul in I Timothy said that some people, being greedy for money, have wandered away from the faith and have hurt themselves with many griefs (sorrows or troubles). This is also true today. There ae many people who stopped walking with the Lord because they decided to pursue their career instead. They work overtime and do other activities instead. The tragedy is that they didn’t set out to wander from the faith. They had every intention of following Christ but then it came time to make a hard choice about their daily lives. They put their pay ticket and financial security first. Paul told Timothy to “fight the good fight of faith”. This is not the romantic picture of Christians slaying demons and overcoming the forces of evil. The real battle is found in the decisions that we make each day. These decisions reveal how much or how little our relationship with Jesus Christ means to us. So I ask, are we feeding regularly off of Jesus? Do we have a desire to come into His presence? What is your prayer life like?
  4. Coming to Jesus Involves Other People: In theory it is possible to spend all of our time eating alone. But most of us don’t like to eat alone. If you were to eat alone, you would get all the nutrients to stay healthy and fit. But food is so much more than vitamins and proteins. Food is meant for sharing. Meals should be social occasions where we share news and have a good time together. It should be no different when it comes to feeding on Jesus, the Bread of Life. Jesus never meant for our faith to be a solitary, private affair. He meant for us to live our lives together sharing our joys and sorrows of each day. We are to show each other genuine Christ-like love and compassion. We are to have a good time together in our Sabbath worship.
Jesus is our Bread of Life that we must eat to have life in us. This is not just talking about Holy Communion. When Jesus was saying this, he was in the synagogue at Capernaum speaking to believers and non-believers. He was not speaking about the communion ritual that he had not even started yet. In verse 63, Jesus says the spirit gives life and the flesh profits nothing. This means whatever form of worship service we attend, when we are gathered together in Jesus’s name, we must be open to the work of God’s Holy Spirit in our individual lives. Whether we have a formal service with robed choirs or an informal service with lots of singing and hands raised high, the most important thing is that the Holy Spirit is working in us and through us. I think Jesus would rather that we be more concerned about our being ready to change, be changed and be renewed by the Holy Spirit.

For us to open ourselves up to the Holy Spirit, we must realize that the words Jesus spoke are spirit and life. Through all these scriptures, the message is the same. If we are to receive salvation and to grow in our relationship with Jesus, we need to hear and respond to the Word of God. When the Word is read and when the Word is preached, the same Holy Spirit that caused it to be written, speaks to our hearts. The Holy Spirit knocks on the doors of our lives asking to come in. Whatever form of worship you and I might prefer, the most important thing is that we allow God to speak to us through His Holy Spirit. This is what it means to feed on Jesus. The scripture is to be read and note the message that we read. We need to learn and inwardly digest the Holy Scriptures. This is so we can be touched and transformed by the words of Jesus. Jesus is the Bread of life and we must think of what this verse means to us. Are we feeding on Jesus and growing in our faith? Are we spiritually hungry? Think on this verse and let it challenge you. What does it mean to you to spend time regularly with Him? What does it mean to involve other people in your faith? Think on these things because there are many people around us living and dying without knowing that Jesus is the Bread of Life. He alone can fully and truly satisfy. For these people, each of us have the words of life. We need to witness and share Jesus with others.