Unit 25, Session 3: Jesus' Hard Teachings
On the heels of His miraculous feeding of the five thousand, Jesus encountered crowds who erroneously concluded He was worth following because He could use His power to fill their empty stomachs. But Jesus recognized their motives and challenged them to go after something greater—not to work for food, which does not last long, but to receive eternal life by believing in Him.
Over and over again, people misunderstood Jesus’ words. They asked what they could do to get the food that lasts forever. Eternal life is a gift that God gives—not to those who perform certain deeds, but to anyone who believes in Jesus. Then the crowd asked for another sign. If Moses had provided bread for 40 years, couldn’t Jesus do that too? Jesus pointed out the bread didn’t come from Moses; it came from God. The crowd was so determined to get bread to eat that they didn’t understand recognize that God had now provided true bread from heaven by sending His Son.
Jesus said, “I am the bread of life.” He wanted to give people more than food. He wanted to give them true life. Jesus continued, “If anyone eats of this bread he will live forever” (John 6:51). As you teach, emphasize to kids that God invites us to come and eat. We partake in the bread of life by believing in Him.
The Jewish leaders struggled with Jesus’ teaching. How could this man, whom they knew as the son of Joseph, be the Son of God? Furthermore, Jesus talked about giving His flesh and blood. To the Jews, this didn’t make any sense. Jesus wanted to do more than fill people’s stomachs; He wanted to give them true life. Jesus’ teachings were hard to understand. When Jesus talked about His flesh and blood, He was talking about His death and resurrection. When we trust in Jesus, He gives us the gift of eternal life.
Many people stopped following Jesus because they could not accept His teachings. Yet Peter, one of the Twelve, grasped the truth: “You have the words of eternal life. … You are the Holy One of God” (John 6:68-69). When we trust in Jesus, He gives us the gift of eternal life.
Jesus' Hard Teachings
Jesus wanted to do more than fill people’s stomachs; He wanted to give them true life. Jesus’ teachings were hard to understand. When Jesus talked about His flesh and blood, He was talking about His death and resurrection. When we trust in Jesus, He gives us the gift of eternal life.
Family Discussion Questions
- Do you find any of Jesus’ teachings difficult to accept? Why?
• What kind of King is Jesus?
• Does anything about Jesus surprise you? Why?
- What does it mean for Jesus to be the “bread of life”?
• What are some things that are hard to understand about the Bible?
• How can we grow in our understanding of God’s Word?
-Have everyone sit in a circle.
-Everyone will take turns saying a food they love to eat.
-Each person must name a different food. If a kid says a food that has already been named, he must perform some challenging task, such as doing 10
push-ups or standing on one foot for 30 seconds.
-They may rejoin the game after completing the task.
"I noticed none of you included flesh or blood in your favorite foods. Would it shock you to know that Jesus said His disciples must eat His flesh and drink His blood?! Today, we will learn what that meant, and why many people struggled to understand it."
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