Sermon 15-8-2

Reading

John 6: 24 to 35:

When the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, neither his disciples, they also took shipping, and came to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus. And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said unto him, Rabbi, when camest thou hither? Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled. Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed. Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. They said therefore unto him, What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work? Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. 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.

Why do we believe? Is it because we ate of the loaves and were filled? This scene is just after the feeding of the five thousand! Can we see miracles? Not if we don’t give it a chance. Not, if we plan out our lives to the last detail. Jesus said, ‘Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed.’ or approved. Everlasting Life!!! This is hard to believe, isn’t it. There is a chapter called ‘Everlasting Life’ in Greetings from Paradise. The Disciples asked what to do and Jesus answered: ‘This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.’ And the Disciples asked for a sign. They asked for something like the Manna with which God fed the Isrealites in the desert. Now this was just after the feeding of the five thousand. Jesus answered: ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.’ That is the bread of thwich the Disciples wanted to eat. And Jesus said: ’I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.’

So this is the work of God, believe in Jesus, labour not for meat that perisheth. Be generous! But what is the bread of life? He that cometh to Jesus shall never hunger and he who eats this bread shall never thirst?

In John 4: 5 to 42 there is a scene between Jesus and a Samaritan woman. Jesus was alone at a well in Samaria. Jesus was on his way from Judah to Galilee. According to verse 6, he was wearied from his journey! It was the sixth hour which was roughly between 12 and 1 pm. The disciples had gone into the nearby city to buy food.

When the woman came to the well, Jesus asked her to give him to drink. The woman seemed surprised that a Jew would address a Samaritan, (verse 9), ‘for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.’ Jesus answered that, if she knew the gift of God and who he was, she would have asked him for water and he would have given her ‘Living Water’. The woman did not seem to understand, since she said to him that he doesn’t have anything with what to draw water out of the well. Jesus replied (verses 13 & 14),

Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.’ ‘Aionios’, ‘everlasting’ means without beginning or end, that which always has been and always will be.

The woman wanted of that water, that she thirst not neither come to the well to draw. Jesus replied, ‘Go, call thy man, and come hither.’ Why that? What would her man have to do with something non – sexual? Jesus frequently healed across distances (eg.: Matt. 15: 22 to 28; Luke 7: 2 to 10) particularly then, when the people concerned were ’unworthy’ non – Jews. She could have taken some water home to her man, since she did have a waterpot.

Anyway, she answered that she had no man and Jesus told her that she had had five men and (verse 18), ‘he whom thou now hast is not thy man.’ Then the woman realised that he was a prophet. Later, when speaking to the other Samaritans, the woman referred to this statement of Jesus as (verse 39), ‘He told me all that ever I did.’ So having five men was all she ever did? It probably was the most important of what she ever did. It was what her life had been about, the spiritual part. Her men were central to her life!

However at this time she said to Jesus (verse 20), ‘Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.’ Jesus replied, ‘Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God [is] a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship [him] in spirit and in truth.’ The woman said to him, that she knew that Christ was coming and Jesus told her who he was.

Then the disciples returned and (verse 27), ‘marvelled that he talked with the woman: yet no man said, “What seekest thou?” or, “Why talkest thou with her?”’ Why were they surprised? Jesus spoke to Samaritans at other times (Luke 17: 11).

The woman then left her waterpot and went into the city to get the men. In the meantime the disciples gave Jesus to eat, but he said (verse 32 & 34), ‘I have meat to eat that ye know not of. My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.’ This is even though in verse 6 he had been wearied from the journey. He then continued to speak about reaping for what another had laboured (verse 37), ‘My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.

Why was it pointed out that no man asked, ‘What seekest thou?’ or, ‘Why talkest thou with her?’ Some say that this was because it was unusual for a Jew to speak to a Samaritan, but Jesus had spoken to Samaritans before (eg. Luke 17: 11) and he had told the parable of the good Samaritan (Luke 10: 30 to 37). He even had healed a Canaanite woman’s daughter (Matt. 15: 22 to 28).

And why did Jesus ask her to call her man? And who was the one who is not her man, the one whom she now has (verse 18)?