When you walk by a bake shop….it hits you! If you are like me, my senses are in such agreement that my mouth begins to water. Is there anything that smells better than the smell of freshIy baked bread? I think not. I came to a really sad point in my life years ago when I was diagnosed with an allergy to everything in the wheat family. Gluten-free options were the pits back then, but I am glad to report I have been restored to my enjoyment of bread. Being able to eat and partake of nourishment is the way God made us.
God sees our spiritual needs, as well; what we truly need and what our spirit is hungry for is His concern. Every single person created by Him has this need—this thing within us that hungers for spiritual nourishment.
There was this little hamlet in Israel called Bethlehem. Its literal meaning is “house of bread.” How appropriate. It was no coincidence that it was named Bethlehem. It was ordained and prophesied long ago to be the birthplace of an important person associated to this location who was also a descendant of the house of David—Jesus Christ.
His ancestors were well known in Bethlehem; Naomi returned to her native Bethlehem with her widowed daughter-in-law, Ruth. Ruth was a Moabitess. She willingly left Moab and returned with Naomi to Bethlehem to start a new life. From there, she met and married her kinsman redeemer, Boaz. Ruth and Boaz gave birth to Obed, and from Obed came Jesse, and from Jesse—David the King. God had it planned all along by his own hand, bringing forth from the “house of bread” and the royal line of King David, one who would call himself “the bread of life” and the “true bread that came down from heaven.”
“Then Jesus said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.’
“Then they said to Him, ‘Lord, give us this bread always.’
“And Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst’” (John 6:32-35).
This is used to symbolize the point in which we are to partake of the bread. We typically cut it or break off a piece and eat it. Only when bread is broken can it be shared with others.
Jesus went a step further in this symbol of bread being broken. It was to represent His body which was broken for our sins. It is an intricate part of our communion as believers in Christ. It represents our belief in what Jesus did for us on the cross; His body, like the bread, was broken for us. We remember that act of redeeming love given to us every time we have communion. The wine is also taken in symbolic fashion, representing His blood poured out as a sacrifice for our sins.
To have communion in the faith as a Christian is to remember that Christ was broken and poured out for you and me. When we take and eat it, we as partakers are reminded, as the recipients, of what He has given us—His body and His blood.
“While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, ‘Take and eat; this is my body.’ Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, ‘Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom’” (Matthew 26:26-29).
The breaking of bread in fellowship—
In Bible times, to eat in someone’s home, sometimes referred to as “breaking bread,” it was understood to be more than just a meal. It implied fellowship and a relationship. Zaccheus, the man of small stature who needed a tree to help him sight the Master, did not even stand a chance when Jesus said he was coming to his house that very day. He was coming to have fellowship and give him some real bread that was like no other. Jesus saw what Zaccheus truly hungered for – the bread of life!
Jesus offers this life bread to everyone who will receive and partake. He wants to have eternal fellowship, by restoring what our sins took away from us, through the sacrifice of His body and blood on the cross. He rose in victory over death and can offer life to all who will believe in Him.
Jesus wants to give you and me what we truly hunger for spiritually—himself. Real bread from the bread house!
“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me” (Revelation 3:20).
“This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die” (John 6:50).