Tuesday, July 20, 2021
22-24 The next day, the crowd that was left behind realized that there had been only one boat and that Jesus had not gotten into it with his disciples. They had seen them go off without him. By now, boats from Tiberias had pulled up near where they had eaten the bread blessed by the Master. So when the crowd realized he was gone and wasn’t coming back, they piled into the Tiberias boats and headed for Capernaum, looking for Jesus.
25 When they found him back across the sea, they said, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”
26 Jesus answered, “You’ve come looking for me not because you saw God in my actions but because I fed you, filled your stomachs—and for free.
The Bread of Life
27 “Don’t waste your energy striving for perishable food like that. Instead, work for the food that sticks with you, food that nourishes your lasting life, food the Son of Man provides. He and what he does are guaranteed by God the Father to last.”
28 To that, they said, “Well, what do we do then to get in on God’s works?”
29 Jesus said, “Sign on with the One that God has sent. That kind of a commitment gets you in on God’s works.” -John 6:22-29 The Message.
The crowd stayed on the opposite shore of the lake. Jesus didn’t enter the boat with the disciples, and the group realized that only one boat had been there, but they also realized that Jesus had gone away alone. So everyone started a search party for Jesus because the disciples weren’t there either. Finally, they found him on the other side of the lake. So the crowd asked, “When did you get here?” Jesus responded, “Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me not because you saw the signs I performed, but because you ate the loaves and had you full.” Let’s talk about what Jesus said. You are looking for me because you saw the signs I performed. Jesus called them out because of what can be their self-centered motives. Jesus believed that they followed him because of physical and temporal benefits and not satisfy spiritual hunger. Truth is that the followers of Jesus know the truth because he has the truth and his way is the way to live. Another reality is that people use religion to gain prestige, comfort, or even political votes.
So, let’s talk about me. I have a podcast I do call “Afternoon Coffee Break with Darren Watts.” I talk a lot about racism and discrimination in America. In my podcast, I started to get the bible involved with the education of teaching oppression. The bible shares stories about oppression. The thing that has bothered me the most is why Christians choose to ignore oppression in America and refuse to talk to their children about oppression in the bible. Is this self-centered of me to do? Let me know. Because the oppressors can be categorized in many areas. It doesn’t have to be only slavery. If you can’t speak up about it because you are silent by the oppressors, that’s oppression. It’s my thoughts, and I would love to hear your thoughts about it.
Jesus continued his answer, “Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him, God the Father has placed his seal of approval. The crowd asked, “What must we do to do the works God requires”? Jesus said, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” Yes, a lot of sincere seekers for God can be confused about what he wants. I know I do; I get it a lot of times. I’m sure I’m not the only one. Many religious leaders or philosophers try to answer this question, but Jesus can make it easy to answer. The answer is this; we must believe in him whom God has sent. We can do all the work for him, but it comes from who we believe. Accept Jesus when he claims to be God. Spiritual development is built on affirmation. Matthew 16:16, in summary, declares to Jesus, you are the Messiah, the Son of the living God. Make that a life of a belief that is satisfying to your Creator.
Father, thank you for your dedication to us. We have work to do to recognize how we follow you. Do we follow you by our self-centered motives? I asked that question myself, and I hope others will. If you see a self-centered attitude in me, please correct me and those you see. In Jesus’ name. Amen!