Summary: Jesus’ congregation drops from 5000 to 13 in one day because he wants followers who are Jesus Chasers, not Sensation Chasers

John 6:52-70 – Sensation Chasers or Jesus Chasers

Let’s say for a moment you are responsible for hiring and firing your church pastor

• The church is doing great. You have more than 5000 people attending

• The senior pastor is a great guy, people like him, he’s a captivating speaker, and has even been know to perform the occasional miracle

• Then one day he gets up and says something so offensive in his sermon that there is an uproar in the congregation and 4,988 people leave the church

• The church drops from 5000 to 13 in one day

• This actually happened by the way

• What would you do to the senior pastor for losing all those good tithe paying people? Fire him?

• If you said fire him, you would have just fired Jesus Christ

We pick up the story in John 6

• Just the day before Jesus had fed the 5000

• You’ve heard of “Ambulance chasers”, well these people were “Sensation chasers”

• The crowds are still following Jesus hoping to see another amazing miracle

• They wanted the spectacular, they wanted excitement, they wanted impressive miracles

• But Jesus has other plans for His true followers

• So he pulls them up and tells them instead of being “Sensation Chasers” he wants them to become “Jesus Chasers”

In the gospel of John, Jesus uses the term “I am” seven times

• John’s gospel is written to prove that Jesus was indeed the Son of God

• So when Jesus uses these “I am” phrases they are really claims to His deity

• No man can make any of these claims

• It is in this section of scripture that Jesus makes the first “I am” claim when he says, “I am the bread of life” John 6:35

• The other six claims Jesus makes are:

o “I am the light of the world.” (8:12, 9:5)

o “I am the gate.” (10:7)

o “I am the good shepherd.” (10:11,14)

o “I am the resurrection and the life.” (11:25)

o “I am the way, the truth and the life. (14:6)

o “I am the true vine.” (15:1)

• With all of these “I am’s” what does it tells us about where our focus should be?

o If we want “True Bread” to whom do we go? Jesus

o If we want “Light” to whom do we go? Jesus

o If we want to find “the gate” to whom do we go? Jesus

o If we want to meet “the good shepherd” to whom do we go? Jesus

o If we want “resurrection and life ” to whom do we go? Jesus

o If we want to find the “Way, Truth, and Life” to whom do we go? Jesus

o If we want to be attached to the “True Vine” to whom do we go? Jesus

• So what kind of “chasers” do we want to be? Do we crave excitement, the spectacular, impressive miracles

• Or do we crave a relationship with the One who will give us true life

Pick up the story in John 6:52

52 Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?"

• Why was this so offensive to the Jews? V.59 Gives us a clue

• Here right in the Jewish synagogue, Jesus talks about eating unclean human flesh and drinking blood, both forbidden under the Mosaic Law

53Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.

• This is one of several passages in the Book of John where Jesus is speaking on another level to his audience

• I used to say that about my math teacher

• In John 2 Jesus about his Body as the new “temple”

• In John 3 Jesus spoke to Nicodemus about a “new birth”

• In John 4 He spoke to the Samaritan woman about “living water”

• Now here in John 6 he speaks to this great crowd of followers about the “true bread” from heaven

• The audience however is operating on another level

• They are totally absorbed with the physical, that’s why they are chasing the sensational, they want miracles, excitement, and a better physical life

• Jesus however is speaking at a much higher level. He is effectively saying, you hang onto and think this physical is real life, but if you are willing to partake of me, I will show you what real life is

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