John 6:47-59

John 6:47-59

6:47  Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. 50 This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”

52 The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” 53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. 55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. 56 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. 57 As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever feeds on me, he also will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like the bread the fathers ate, and died. Whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.”

59 Jesus said these things in the synagogue, as he taught at Capernaum.

  1. In John 6:47, Jesus says, “whoever believes has eternal life.” But the word ‘believes’ there is in the Greek present tense, which indicates an on-going action. So, Jesus was actually saying, ‘Whoever keeps on believing has eternal life.’ Why might this be?
  2. In this ‘Bread of Life’ sermon, Jesus uses a number of words and phrases which all essentially mean the same thing: ‘come to Me’ (6:35, 37, 44) – ‘eat this bread’ (6:50, 51) – ‘work for the food that endures to eternal life’ (6:27) – ‘look upon the Son’ (6:40) – ‘feed on My flesh’ (6:54, 56) – ‘eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood’ (6:53) – ‘feed on Me’ (6:57). What do all of these phrases mean? (Hint: see 6:29, 35, 36, 40, 47.) How do we know they all mean the same thing?
  3. Would you agree that John 6:40 sums up the entire ‘Bread of Life’ sermon? Why or why not?
  4. Jesus is Jewish, from the ancestral line of King David. So why does He say to the Jews, “your fathers ate manna,” instead of saying ‘our fathers ate manna’ in 6:49?
  5. 6:51 is a stunning verse. Jesus had earlier said, “My Father gives you the true bread from heaven” (John 6:32). Then He said, “I am the bread of life” (John 6:35). Now He says, “The bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” What is He getting at? How might this connect with John 1:14?
  6. Why does Jesus repeat in 6:51 what He had just said in 6:50: “If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever”?
  7. Why were Jesus’ words in John 6:53 so scandalous? Here’s a hint: read Leviticus 17:10-17 & Genesis 9:1-4. Yikers!
  8. How do we know that John 6:53-54 has nothing to do with the Lord’s Table?
  9. In 6:56, Jesus introduces a radical new theological idea. What is it? What does it prefigure? What’s so stunning about it?
  10. Why is it important that Jesus “said these things in a synagogue” (6:59)? See John 18:20 and its context.

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