I AM the Living Bread of Life are the words of our Lord Jesus Christ (Jn6:48, 51). The word “life” is the Greek word “zoe” (Strong’s 2222). I like this definition of Zoe:
The absolute life which God has in Himself and gives to us in Christ.
Zoe is eternal life as Jn3:16 describes. Zoe is not what we receive when we go to heaven; zoe is ours now. In Christ. In fact, if you ain’t got zoe, you ain’t going to heaven. The Zoe life of God is eternal life, everlasting life. 1Jn5:12 says:
He that hath the Son hath life; (G2222) and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. (G2222)
So when the Master says in Jn6:40, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life, isn’t He saying that we have Zoe life now? The absolute life that God has in Himself.
Eating the Living Bread
So interesting and meaningful to me, that in the verses following in John 6, Jesus instructs us how to keep this truth in front of us. He talks about how “Your fathers ate manna in the wilderness” Jn6:49. How often did they eat that bread? Daily. And when our Lord Jesus talks about how to continue remembering what He was about to do for us, he ties it to the bread and the wine. Do this to remember Me. Do what? Partake of the bread and the wine in communion with Me. Communion is fellowship, joint-participation, koinonia. As often as you do it could possibly mean, “Do it often”. The legendary Smith Wigglesworth took communion on a daily basis.
I live by the Father
As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. Jn6:57
To me, this is one of the most foundational truths relative to living out the Christian life. The Holy Spirit takes the verb form of the noun “zoe”. Zoe = life (G2222). Zao = living (G2198). Whereas we have received the free grace gift (without any of our own merit) known as Zoe, it’s the living out of that Zoe life that is our challenge here on earth. True?
As a pastor, from time to time, I would announce to the congregation that I had decided to quit trying to live the Christian life. What? The pastor is backsliding? No, actually, I considered that decison to be more frontsliding than backsliding! Why? Because if we were all to be honest, we often fail in our attempts to live the Christian life. We make rules and laws, often painting ourselves into the corner. Yet, smiting our chest and asking God to be merciful to us seems to be more pleasing to Him than fulfilling all the rules and laws. Did you break the Law or did the Law break you?
God wants to live the Zoe life through you
So when Jesus gives us this key with the verb form of Zoe, it is the real hint of living out the Christian life. “As the living (zao) Father sent Me, and I live (zao) by the Father, so he who feeds on me will live (zao) because of Me.” Jn6:57 I live BY the Father. Strong’s says this word is “a primary preposition denoting the channel of an act”. When I live BY the Father, He is the channel by which I live out the life. He lives (zao) His life (zoe) through me. I can’t do it, I fall short. He can do it. He has done it. He wants to continue to do it through us.
Do this in remembering Me
In the very next verse, the Master tells us how “your fathers ate the manna”, which reminded them each day of God’s fresh provision. “He who eats this bread will live forever”. That bread is Jesus Himself, the living Bread, so how often should we eat, in remembrance of Him. How about “Give us this day our daily Bread”?
We fell into sin when the first Adam ate something he was told not to eat. We keep communion/fellowship with God by eating something He told us to eat.