We don’t often read of much humour from Jesus when he is being serious, nor are we accustomed to John using irony when describing the responses of people to Jesus. I suggest that you read through John 6:24-35 and take note of how “the crowd’ and Jesus seem to be out-of-touch with each other. The people must be baffled with the way in which Jesus appears to be on such a different wavelength than they expect. And John makes quite a parody of the situation.

The major teaching that Jesus for the people to do God’s work is that they should start with “believing in the One God has sent”. Strangely they respond with the request for a miracle. The consequent interaction concludes with Jesus revealing himself as “the bread of life” and that anyone who approaches him will “never be hungry“.

The whole collaboration is intriguing. Particularly because of the contrast of the temporal and the everlasting, the worldly and the heavenly, the physical and the spiritual.  

The challenge for us is to be honest in acknowledging what we actually hunger for. Is it for recognition? Delight? Achievement? Or just acceptance from other persons? These wants can be met in proper connection with Jesus so that we need “never be hungry again”. How so? The 2017 Passion Translation provides us with assurance wherein Jesus lovingly says to the people, “I am the Bread of Life. Come every day to me and you will never be hungry.”

Graeme Cake
Hobart North Uniting Church