July 2 – 8, 2017
“And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst” (John 6:35).
Study Help: The Desire of Ages, 383–394.
“As from that [miraculous] bread they [the great multitude] had received physical strength and refreshment, so from Christ they [His hearers in the synagogue] might receive spiritual strength unto eternal life.” The Desire of Ages, 386.
1 JESUS, THE BREAD OF LIFE
- What sign did the Jews want to see and what historical fact did they mention in connection with their question? John 6:30, 31.
- What did Jesus say concerning the bread from heaven? John 6:32, 33.
- Having their minds fixed merely upon the natural, physical bread, what request did they make to Christ? John 6:34. What explanation did Jesus give them? John 6:35, 36.
- What two intimately related promises are given to those who identify themselves with Christ? John 6:37–40.
Note: “Again Christ appealed to those stubborn hearts. ‘Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out’ (John 6:37). All who received Him in faith, He said, should have eternal life. Not one could be lost. No need for Pharisees and Sadducees to dispute concerning the future life. No longer need men mourn in hopeless grief over their dead.” The Desire of Ages, 386, 387.
2 THE CRISIS IN GALILEE
- What effect did the words of Christ have on the Jews, and what explanation did Jesus give them concerning His flesh and blood? John 6:52–55.
- What does it mean to eat the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of God? John 6:56, 57; 1John 3:24; 5:12.
Note: “To eat the flesh and drink the blood of Christ is to receive Him as a personal Saviour, believing that He forgives our sins, and that we are complete in Him. It is by beholding His love, by dwelling upon it, by drinking it in, that we are to become partakers of His nature.” The Desire of Ages, 389.
- What did Christ’s words provoke among His own disciples? John 6:60, 61, 65, 66.
- After many disciples had left Him, what did Christ ask the twelve, and what did Peter answer Him? John 6:67–69.
- What position did the renegades then take? 1John 2:19.
Note: “As those disaffected disciples turned away from Christ, a different spirit took control of them. They could see nothing attractive in Him whom they had once found so interesting. They sought out His enemies, for they were in harmony with their spirit and work. They misinterpreted His words, falsified His statements, and impugned His motives. They sustained their course by gathering up every item that could be turned against Him; and such indignation was stirred up by these false reports that His life was in danger.” The Desire of Ages, 392, 393.
3 AT THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES
- After members of Jesus’ family tried to influence Him towards the rabbis (John 7:3–8), what question did He put to those rabbis? John 7:19.
Note: “His [Christ’s] brothers, as the sons of Joseph were called, sided with the rabbis. They insisted that the traditions must be heeded, as if they were the requirements of God.” The Desire of Ages, 86.
“Jesus gave the rabbis an evidence of His divinity by showing that He read their hearts. Ever since the healing at Bethesda they had been plotting His death. Thus they were themselves breaking the law which they professed to be defending. ‘Did not Moses give you the law,’ He said, ‘and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill Me?’ (John 7:19).” Ibid., 456.
- What did the rabbis answer Christ and of what did they accuse Him? John 7:20.
- How did Jesus respond to the mean insinuations of His enemies? John 7:21–23.
Note: “To this insinuation [that His wonderful works were instigated by an evil spirit] Christ gave no heed. He went on to show that His work of healing at Bethesda was in harmony with the Sabbath law, and that it was justified by the interpretation which the Jews themselves put upon the law. He said, ‘Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision; … and ye on the Sabbath day circumcise a man’ (John 7:22). According to the law, every child must be circumcised on the eighth day. Should the appointed time fall upon the Sabbath, the rite must then be performed. How much more must it be in harmony with the spirit of the law to make a man ‘every whit whole on the Sabbath day’ (verse 23).” The Desire of Ages, 456, 457.
- What warning did Christ give them? John 7:24.
4 NO ONE SPOKE AS THIS MAN
- Upon hearing and seeing Jesus preach openly, what did some of the people ask? John 7:25, 26.
Note: “Many among Christ’s hearers … were dwellers at Jerusalem, and … conviction pressed upon them that He was the Son of God.” The Desire of Ages, 457.
- With what words did many express their faith in Jesus? John 7:31, 40; Deuteronomy 18:15.
- What did Jesus declare on the last day of the feast, and what did these words mean? John 7:37–39.
- When told to arrest Christ (John 7:45), why did the officers not comply? John 7:46.
Note: “On the last day of the feast, the officers sent out by the priests and rulers to arrest Jesus, returned without Him. They were angrily questioned, ‘Why have ye not brought Him?’ With solemn countenance they answered, ‘Never man spake like this Man’ (John 7:45, 46).
“Hardened as were their hearts, they were melted by His words. While He was speaking in the temple court, they had lingered near, to catch something that might be turned against Him. But as they listened, the purpose for which they had been sent was forgotten. They stood as men entranced. Christ revealed Himself to their souls. They saw that which priests and rulers would not see—humanity flooded with the glory of divinity. They returned, so filled with this thought, so impressed by His words, that to the inquiry, ‘Why have ye not brought Him?’ they could only reply, ‘Never man spake like this Man.’ ” The Desire of Ages, 459.
“The spirit which actuated those priests and rulers is still manifested by many who make a high profession of piety. They refuse to examine the testimony of the Scriptures concerning the special truths for this time. They point to their own numbers, wealth, and popularity, and look with contempt upon the advocates of truth as few, poor, and unpopular, having a faith that separates them from the world.” The Great Controversy, 596.
5 “NEITHER DO I CONDEMN THEE”
- After trying to set a legal trap for Christ (John 8:1–5), how did Jesus react before the falsehood of the Pharisees? John 8:6.
- What did Jesus do while the Pharisees were waiting for His verdict? John 8:8, 9.
- How did Jesus deal with the woman after her accusers had left? John 8:10, 11.
Note: “The accusers had been defeated. Now, their robe of pretended holiness torn from them, they stood, guilty and condemned, in the presence of Infinite Purity. They trembled lest the hidden iniquity of their lives should be laid open to the multitude; and one by one, with bowed heads and downcast eyes, they stole away, leaving their victim with the pitying Saviour.” The Desire of Ages, 461.
- How will true believers act when a Christian falls into sin? Galatians 6:1, 2. What will false-hearted believers often do?
Note: “It is not Christ’s follower that, with averted eyes, turns from the erring, leaving them unhindered to pursue their downward course. Those who are forward in accusing others, and zealous in bringing them to justice, are often in their own lives more guilty than they. Men hate the sinner, while they love the sin. Christ hates the sin, but loves the sinner. This will be the spirit of all who follow Him. Christian love is slow to censure, quick to discern penitence, ready to forgive, to encourage, to set the wanderer in the path of holiness, and to stay his feet therein.” The Desire of Ages, 462.
PERSONAL REVIEW QUESTIONS
1 How was the prejudice of the Jews against Christ manifested?
2 What does it mean to look to Jesus?
3 What spirit did the rabbis manifest towards Jesus?
4 Why did Jesus attract the attention and respect of the people?
5 How does Jesus deal with erring souls?
Copyright © 2004 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.