Tagged: Bread of Life

Now it’s your turn


Mark 6.30-34, 53-end

Mark doesn’t record for us how the disciples reacted when Jesus says to them: Right – that’s enough from me. Now it’s your turn to go off and do some preaching and healing!

We hear right at the beginning of our gospel reading today how, when they get back they gather around Jesus to tell him what they’ve been up to. But what went through their minds when he first told them he was sending them out two by two, with nothing more than the clothes they were wearing and a staff?

I’m not a betting man, but if I were I think I’d be on to a sure thing in betting that their immediate reaction wasn’t: That’s a great idea Jesus, when can we start? 

Jesus, as we know, spent a great deal of time talking to and teaching his disciples. But there’s no substitute for actually doing the job. And no matter how much Jesus taught his disciples he knew that the best way for them to learn about the practical aspects of spreading the gospel was to send them out on their own to preach and to heal. And so off they went.

And I bet that when they first went off there was – to put it mildly – a certain degree of reluctance: 

Hang on a minute, Jesus, we’re not quite sure about this – don’t we need a lot more teaching from you, first?

Not sure we know what we’re talking about really – aren’t you coming with us? We could do with a bit of support.

What if that healing thing doesn’t work? We’ve never done it before. We’ll look silly if nothing happens!

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More bread anyone?


gray foods on wicker baskets

I was preaching away from home this week, at the lovely little church of St. Mary’s Farleigh. Here’s what I said.

John 6.35, 41-51

Why is bread like a bus?

Well, just like the proverbial bus that doesn’t come along for ages and then three come at once, so in our readings we go for months on end without any reference to bread, and here we are for the third week in a row with a gospel reading about bread. Having had the feeding of the five thousand on five loaves and two fish two weeks ago, last week and this we get Jesus saying, “I am the bread of life.”

This makes life difficult for people like me who plan services. There are only so many hymns about bread in our hymn book. At St. John’s I think we ran out last week! And there are only so many sermons you can preach in a row on the same theme! And just in case you were wondering – yes, next week you get Jesus saying, “I am the bread of life” for the third week in a row!

So why is bread – living bread – so important that we have four gospel readings about Jesus and bread? Continue reading

Bread and buses


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This Sunday we heard more of Jesus describing himself as the Bread of Life in John 6. Here’s what I said.

John 6.35, 41-51

Why is bread like a bus?

Well, just like the proverbial bus that doesn’t come along for ages and then three come at once, so in our readings we go for months on end without any reference to bread, and here we are for the third week in a row with a gospel reading about bread. Having had the feeding of the five thousand on five loaves and two fish two weeks ago, last week and this we get Jesus saying, “I am the bread of life.”

This makes life difficult for people like me who take services. There are only so many hymns about bread in our hymn book. And only so many sermons you can preach in a row on the same theme! And count yourselves lucky! Next week, if it wasn’t for the fact that we are keeping the feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary – which is really next Saturday but we do it a day late – you’d be getting Jesus saying, “I am the bread of life” for the third week in a row!

So why is bread – living bread – so important?

Life seemed so much simpler when I was a child. Continue reading