John 6:35 – And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.
We are so accustomed to the physical world that it is very hard to recognize the spiritual realm. Those that become aware of the spiritual world are often considered radical or some sort of weirdo. Jesus had just performed a great miracle the day before. He fed thousands of people with five barley loaves and two small fish. He is trying to share with these followers that the miracle was a picture or image of a spiritual reality. There was a message behind the miracle. He was saying there was another kind of food and another kind of hunger. He was the living bread that comes down from heaven. This was a greater miracle than even the manna that lasted for forty years. Jesus was speaking about food for the soul. Here is how Luther describes this verse.
“Out of the mass of powerful words in the holy Scripture there is almost no stronger word that Christ is a bread and meal given by God, and that whoever eats this bread lives forever and becomes content, no longer hungering or thirsting. . . . It is a settled point that here in this chapter the Lord is speaking about spiritual food, for he himself explains it as the hunger and thirst of the soul. The soul wants to live forever, to not be cursed, to have a merciful God, to be able to stand before the wrath and judgment of God, to not be condemned by sin and the law or go to hell. Those are the soul’s desires. It is a spiritual thirst and hunger, for which we need a spiritual meal and drink. And so the Holy Spirit comes and says, “If you do not want to die or be damned, then come to Christ, believe in him and cling to him. Eat this spiritual meal, believe in Christ, that is the most important thing.”
So what kind of food are you fixated on? Can you only see the physical world and the physical needs that we have? That’s why this crowd wanted to make Jesus king. They were stuck on an earthly kingdom. Jesus was about far more than that. He was introducing food for our inner man; the kind that satisfies us forever.