Tuesday of the Third Week of Easter
(Acts 7:51-8:1a; John 6:30-35)
People crave bread. For the hungry bread may be the simplest form of dense food. Once made, it can be transported anywhere and eaten for instant nutrition. For the better off, “bread” serves as a metaphor for money. This kind of bread seemingly provides for every need. In today’s gospel Jesus uses bread in another way. It represents his spiritual legacy.
The Jews ask for a sign if they are to believe in Jesus. They remember how their ancestors pleaded with Moses and received manna received in the desert. Jesus reminds them, however, that it was God who provided the bread-like substance. Now, he says, the same God, his “Father,” is giving richer nutrition. God has sent Jesus as the “true bread from heaven.” Jesus provides all that a people need to live for eternity. He instructs them in his way of truth and love. Even more, he nourishes for the task with his own body and blood.
Jesus is always calling us to believe in him more genuinely. He wants us to embrace him more fully – his teaching, his example, and the community he has left behind. When we do, he promises that we will not be disappointed. Quite the contrary, we will find ourselves enjoying the fullness of life.