Some Forsake Him

THE Jews were displeased with Jesus for 'saying that he was the bread from heaven.'   "And they said, Is not this Jeus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it, then, that he saith, I came down from heaven?" Then Jesus said, " Murmur not among yourelves. No man can come to me except the Father, which hath sent me, draw him." In proof of this statement, he then notes from Isaiah 54:13, saying, "It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all aught of God;" and furthermore, "Everyman, therefore, that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father cometh unto me." it seems that this being taught of God has reference not only to the instruction received from the Scriptures, but to the influences of God's Spirit as well, as may be seen by comparing Jeremiah 31:34; Micah :2; Hebrews 8:10; 10:16; etc. These hard-hearted Jews could not receive Jesus because they rejected those holy influences which would aid them in understanding the Scriptures, and lead them to the truth, the lesson here taught seems to be this, that we cannot appreciate the things of God, and render him true service, without the help which God gives through His revealed word and the aid of His Spirit.

The Jews seemed to want Jesus to bring manna from heaven; but he tried to show them that he had come to bring them what was far better than manna. He said, "Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. ... I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world." Jesus here refers to the sacrifice of himself on the cross, and his words seem the more appropriate since they are supposed to have been uttered just at the time when the priests were slaying the passover-lamb at Jerusalem. This lamb was a type of Christ, the great sacrifice, and as the people were about to eat the flesh of this lamb, Christ applies the type to himself, and speaks of the eating of his own flesh. The Jews, feigning not to understand his meaning, pretended to be greatly astonished. But Jesus went on in still stronger terms, saying, "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. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 

For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. 

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 forever." Christ's fleshly body was nailed to the cross, and his blood was shed for the sins of men. To eat his flesh and drink his blood must be to so take hold on Christ by faith and obedience as to obtain and appropriate the blessings purchased by this great sacrifice. It cannot be true, then, that because ‘Christ died' for all, all must be saved. There is food and drink for all, but those who do not partake will not be nourished or sustained. 

"These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum. Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is a hard saying; who can hear it? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothng: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life." "Thus he instructed them that it was not his human flesh that would give life eternal, but faith in his words and in the efficacy of the sacrifice he was to make for the world. His teaching and example, his life and death, were the heavenly food that was to give them spiritual life and vigor."

 Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 2, p. 283.

"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. And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

"From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. 

Then said Jesus unto the twelve, will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon; for he it was that should betray him, being one of the twelve. After these things Jesus walked in Galilee; for he would not walk in Jewry, because the Jews sought to kill him."