five barley loaves, two small fishes, and the Last Day


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Yesterday my husband pointed out a promise the Lord made, recorded in John’s Gospel. The Lord repeated the promise four times. Here is the passage with the promise in bold type. I’d never really seen this before, and it is important.

I spend a lot of time at a blog that ministers to Roman Catholics. John 6 drives a lot of the controversy in the comments there. Catholics use the passage to support their doctrines of “the Eucharist”, “the Real Presence”, and “the Mass”. After having seen it merely as a passage that is controversial, it was refreshing to have my husband show me the promise in it. If you have repented of your sins, and placed your faith in Jesus Christ to save you, take this promise to heart, and study further, for it sheds additional light on what we know about the Last Day.

If you are a Catholic who sees only a doctrine about “the Real Presence” in this, try to focus on the promise Jesus made to those who believe in Him.

John 6

(AKJV)

After these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is the sea of Tiberias. And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased. And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples. And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh. When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do. Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little. One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, saith unto him, There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many? 10 And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 11 And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. 12 When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. 13 Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.

14 Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world. 15 When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force, to make him a king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone.

16 And when even was now come, his disciples went down unto the sea, 17 and entered into a ship, and went over the sea toward Capernaum. And it was now dark, and Jesus was not come to them. 18 And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew.19 So when they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they see Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh unto the ship: and they were afraid. 20 But he saith unto them, It is I; be not afraid. 21 Then they willingly received him into the ship: and immediately the ship was at the land whither they went.

22 The day following, when the people which stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was none other boat there, save that one whereinto his disciples were entered, and that Jesus went not with his disciples into the boat, but that his disciples were gone away alone; 23 (howbeit there came other boats from Tiberias nigh unto the place where they did eat bread, after that the Lord had given thanks:) 24 when the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, neither his disciples, they also took shipping, and came to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus. 25 And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said unto him, Rabbi, when camest thou hither? 26 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. 27 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. 28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? 29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. 30 They said therefore unto him, What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work? 31 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. 32 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. 33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. 34 Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. 35 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. 36 But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not. 37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. 38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. 39 And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. 40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.

41 The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven. 42 And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven? 43 Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. 44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.  45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. 46 Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. 47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. 48 I am that bread of life. 49 Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. 51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.

52 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat? 53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. 57 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. 58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.

59 These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum. 60 Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? 61 When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? 62 What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? 63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. 64 But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him. 65 And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. 67 Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? 68 Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. 69 And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. 70 Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? 71 He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that should betray him, being one of the twelve.

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13 thoughts on “five barley loaves, two small fishes, and the Last Day

  1. Amen Maria, we do indeed have many promises in the Bible that point to salvation by Faith in Jesus alone, not in works, or anything else, as it is said here: There is NO OTHER NAME UNDER HEAVEN GIVEN AMONG MEN, WHEREBY WE MUST BE SAVED. Not the NAME OF ANY CHURCH, NOT THE NAME OF THE POPE, AND NOT THE NAME OF MARY.
    10 Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the NAME OF JESUS CHRIST of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole (who was healed, NOT BY THE POPE, NOT BY ANY CHURCH, NOT BY MARY)

    11 This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.

    12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. Acts 4

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  2. A very stark example of who a disciple in Christ is! Thank you for posting this Scripture. Where Jesus says He is the bread of Life, what stands out to me the most is that we need to “eat” His flesh and “drink” His blood. It makes me think of when people say that someone eats, drinks and breathes music, racing, sports or whatever. Christ is calling us to eat, drink and breathe our life in Him don’t you think? What a blessing to eat, drink and breathe the life He has called us to. Not as superhumans, but as broken, humble servants, freed from sin by His Holy act of sacrifice. Thank you Lord Jesus! Destroyer of death, Giver of Life, King of kings, Lord of lords!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Al! I believe that what you have said is a good way to understand Jesus’ words about eating and drinking his flesh and blood:

      “It makes me think of when people say that someone eats, drinks and breathes music, racing, sports or whatever. Christ is calling us to eat, drink and breathe our life in Him…”

      This helps me better understand this, so thank you! Yes, all praise to Him Who died for us, willingly, obeying the Father completely!

      Because Jesus’s words about eating and drinking can be misunderstood, I’m grateful both for the other focus – on His promise to raise us at the Last Day – and for your explanation here.

      Lord bless you!
      Maria

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      • Living our life for Him and the promise of everlasting life goes hand in hand doesn’t it sister. For if we are not bearing our fruits here, how can we say to God in the day of judgement that we will follow Him from that day forward? Yet God knows the intent and heart of all. His Glory will truly be revealed in an amazing way. Blessings in Christ to you and yours!

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        • Al, I would put it that way, that is, that “Living our life for Him and the promise of everlasting life goes hand in hand.” Here is God’s testimony about these things:

          Ephesians 2

          And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; 2 wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: 3 among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. 4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) 6 and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: 7 that in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

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  3. The one thing the Catholics miss from this passage of Scripture was that Jesus was contrasting the desire to have our earthly appetites met with the eternal life He gives to believers which is dependent upon His death upon the cross in our stead, shedding His blood so we can be forgiven, and His resurrection from the dead proving He is the Messiah singularly provided by the Father to be the propitiation for our sins. His body crucified and His blood shed becomes the source of our eternal life because He took the punishment that we deserve appeasing the just wrath of God existing against us and His shed blood cleanses us from all sin, so that we are forgiven and reconciled to God, no longer His enemies, but His beloved children through faith in Jesus Christ. His statement that the flesh profits nothing was said against the wrong interpretation the complaining disciples made regarding the metaphor that Jesus was expressing. Those disciples who remained with Him, got it right.
    68 But Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the Words of eternal life. 69 Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” John 6:68-69
    Thank you for sharing this. What a blessing that your wonderful husband pointed out these promises to you. God bless you:)

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