Prayer and Praise.
Jesus said, “Couldn’t you men keep watch with me for one hour?” Matthew 26:40, so we start our journey of giving God time to work in us, by praying this hymn
All Hail The Power of Jesus Name at this link…
41 At this the Jews there began to grumble about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.”
42 They said, “Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, ‘I came down from heaven’?”
43 “Stop grumbling among yourselves,” Jesus answered. 44 “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day.
As Jesus said in v. 36, they did not believe and now they are proving that to be true by saying: ‘How can He now say “I AM the bread from heaven”.’
45 It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’
Jesus accepted the words of the prophets as coming from God. (In this case from Isaiah 54:13).
45b. Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me.
True seekers after God are directed to Jesus.
46 No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father.
The only person who has seen God is Jesus.
47 Very truly I tell you, the one who believes has eternal life.
Trusting in Jesus is the secret to having eternal life.
48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, yet they died. 50 But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which anyone may eat and not die. 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” (Complete Jewish Bible).
The manna eaten in the desert kept their body alive for a short time, but the bread that Jesus is offering gives us life eternal. (Cf Jesus’ teaching on the Holy Spirit).
- Today’s Verse…
Who is Jesus? John 6:51
“…I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
- Today’s Challenge
Jesus said in v. 51 “…Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world”.
Roman Catholic, ‘established’ churches and the Orthodox churches teach that this verse means that their religious leaders are so special that they can ring a bell and turn ordinary bread into the body of Christ, which will forgive sin when eaten. Although they do the same thing with the wine, Catholics add that when they turn wine into the blood of Jesus Christ, it is only available to their “priests”.
Listen, Luke 22:17-22 tells us that Judas ate the bread at the Last Supper which Jesus Himself blessed, and yet we are told that Judas will spend eternity in hell. He only left the upper room to betray Jesus AFTER he had eaten the bread. The bread blessed at the Last Supper by Jesus did not wash away Judas’ sins at all. Jesus was not speaking literally about the bread but metaphorically. If eating the bread had literally become the body of Christ when Jesus spoke those words, then Judas would be spending eternity in heaven! It was obviously a figure of speech. It doesn’t stop there, because bread at Mass or Eucharist still went moldy, and as you couldn’t have the bread which they had turned into the body of Christ, going moldy, they brought wafers in as a replacement, which were kept in a special box with a red light. Additionally, ‘lay people’ in the Catholic tradition were not special enough to drink the wine which they had converted into Jesus’ blood. That was considered so special only priests could have it.
But it still doesn’t stop there, either…
Once they started, they couldn’t stop. For example, the established church in England offers 1/3rd time off purgatory if you undertake a pilgrimage to St. Michaels Mount in Cornwall, and you can get a stamp in a special book to prove you’ve done your pilgrimage.
What’s more, if you were a South American Catholic attending a special Mass on the beach conducted by the Pope, a special indulgence was granted to forgive all your sin, which sounds like such a good deal, attendance at the Pope’s Mass was high!
When you start going off on these imaginary fancies, there’s almost no stopping where they’ll end up. It just goes to show the established church’s teaching on repentance and baptism is ridiculous. What’s more, Hebrews tells us that Jesus’ sacrifice was ONCE only; (Hebrews7:27).
Some churches have spent 1600 years misleading hundreds of millions of people into believing that they have the ability to transform bread literally into Jesus’ body, and that by eating it, it will forgive sin.
The bread at the Last Supper didn’t reprieve Judas just because he ate it, even though Jesus said it was His body! By reading the Bible for ourselves, we would see all this. So my challenge to you is to read the Bible daily for yourselves and not to accept what religious teachers teach, unchallenged. As Tyndale said to a Bishop, “If God spares my life, ere many years I will cause a boy who drives a plough to know more of the scriptures than you do.” The church’s answer was to burn Tyndale at the stake for making Bibles available to the public.
Even under the Anglicans, the Bible was seen as such a competitor by the religious leaders that John Bunyan was imprisoned for 12 years and died very shortly after his release, traveling to London.
Additionally, a clause was written into the constitution of the British and Foreign Bible Society, (now the Bible Society), that the Greek word ‘baptistheto’ (see Acts 2:38), would never be translated into English, in their approved versions, (as that would show that it meant ‘immersion’, and followed on after repentance, which would undermine their teaching on ‘christening’.)
Another example is, have you noticed that the Alpha course speaks of forgiveness in session 2, but not repentance? That lack of understanding was corrected by John Stott in Christianity Explored. However, I was present when Nicky Gumble forbade Baptists from adding a session to the Alpha course on Believer’s baptism – but he added that Alpha had been changed to accommodate the Catholic church. And, it was the shortcoming on obeying the Bible’s teaching on believer’s baptism by immersion, as taught in the gospels and Acts, which was also not corrected in Christianity Explored. Of course, they can’t, because it is an Anglican course and tradition comes before Acts 2:38;- but that doesn’t stop you from visiting a Baptist pastor to ask for Believer’s Baptism by immersion.
In these devotions, we provide the Bible reading as part of the devotional. The challenge is to read the Bible for yourself. Don’t rely on religious leaders to tell you what is in the Bible, but read the Bible daily for yourself. (A free Bible exists online at www.biblegateway.com)
“… He went up on a mountainside by himself to pray.” Matthew 14:23.
Jesus taught His disciples what we call ‘The Lord’s Prayer’; (Luke 11).
Listen here to Albert Malotte’s ‘The Lord’s Prayer’.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name.
Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever.
- The world. (ie Paul says ‘Pray for those in authority’. The news can focus your attention.)
- The ‘suffering church.’ https://barnabasfund.org/nz/pray/daily-prayer/#previous-dates
- Your own situation. (Suggest ‘needs’ rather than ‘wants’.)
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