(John 6:26 ESV) Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves.
Why do you seek Jesus? How do you encourage others to seek Jesus? Is it through sharing the power of his saving Grace, His work completed on the Cross? In our effort to bring people to Christ, do we fall into this category of followers by offering excitement, super programs, lavish dinners, etc…? Are we causing the lost to seek Christ, not for the miracle of His forgiveness to a wretched sinner but for the shallow, self-serving, feel-good Gospel? I am afraid too many times we forget the power of the Holy Spirit and think that without us and without our ‘programs’ and group efforts no one will be saved. We think that if we can just have an event to wow the crowd and our pews are full then we are doing a good work. But are we?
The people in John 6 had just witnessed Jesus feed 5000 people with 2 fish and 5 loaves of bread. He had just walked across the water to get to his disciples. These people were not following him because they had seen these miracles and therefore knew he was the Messiah, they were following Him because he had filled their bellies. They were more concerned about their physical needs than their dying and lost souls.
(John 6:27 ESV) Do not labor for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.”
(John 6:35 ESV) Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.
If we aren’t seeking Jesus because we hunger for Him. If we aren’t following Him because we know without Him we are lost and we haven’t repented of our sin and turned away from all unrighteousness, then we must ask ourselves why are we following Him. In our greatest evangelistic efforts to show people the love Christ has to offer, let us not be guilty of leading and teaching the lost to desire for their physical needs to be met by the Church or Christ, but to seek after the True Living Bread of Life. To show them the Gospel so that they may repent and be saved.
Luke 13:5 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
We must seek and desire more than food itself to know Jesus and become a new creation through Him. Let us not be guilty of leading others to continue in their way by making sure they feel good or that their physical needs are met. Although we are to help others with physical things, first and foremost we must lead them to the One who can save their soul. After that, it will all fall into place because they will find their needs are not quite so important anymore. We must be sure for ourselves as well that we are coming to Christ out of a pure heart and not for our own selfish needs or desires but out of true repentance and a desire to know Him more.
We must ask ourselves, “Why am I following Christ?”