My husband’s family relate a story of a dog they had as children. The dog became ill and the vet gave them pills to give to the dog. Even though the dog would become well, stay alive, if she took the pill, she refused to swallow it. They put the pill in hamburger meat, wrapping meat all around it. She loved this! She gulped down the ball of meat and plopped out the pill, whole and intact, into her dog dish. They tried other ways of disguising it in food to no avail. His dad finally had to hold the dog’s mouth open and throw it in…after a few times, it finally went down. After swallowing hard, the pill of life, finally went down and dog was well again.
There is a phrase we use all the time when confronted with new incredible information for our lives…”Well, that’s just too hard to swallow, I’m not believing that!” Where does this phrase come from? Probably our next passage In John were Jesus reveals himself as the Bread of Life after feeding five thousand men plus their families with bread for their stomachs.
You might even say Jesus painstaking reveals Who He, the Bread of Life eternal. But this Bread explanation is just too hard to understand for most people, even his own disciples, at the time of this revelation. It is a pill just too hard to swallow because they cannot see beyond the physical to accept the gift of the Spiritual. Read deep and slowly…
John 6, The Message
Too Tough to Swallow
60 Many among his disciples heard this and said, “This is tough teaching, too tough to swallow.”
61-65 Jesus sensed that his disciples were having a hard time with this and said, “Does this throw you completely? What would happen if you saw the Son of Man ascending to where he came from? The Spirit can make life. Sheer muscle and willpower don’t make anything happen. Every word I’ve spoken to you is a Spirit-word, and so it is life-making. But some of you are resisting, refusing to have any part in this.” (Jesus knew from the start that some weren’t going to risk themselves with him. He knew also who would betray him.) He went on to say, “This is why I told you earlier that no one is capable of coming to me on his own. You get to me only as a gift from the Father.”
66-67 After this a lot of his disciples left. They no longer wanted to be associated with him. Then Jesus gave the Twelve their chance: “Do you also want to leave?”
68-69 Peter replied, “Master, to whom would we go? You have the words of real life, eternal life. We’ve already committed ourselves, confident that you are the Holy One of God.”
70-71 Jesus responded, “Haven’t I handpicked you, the Twelve? Still, one of you is a devil!” He was referring to Judas, son of Simon Iscariot. This man—one from the Twelve!—was even then getting ready to betray him.
Once again we see the overwhelming grace of God and his amazing patience with our dullness and stupidity. Just as he worked through the Samaritan woman’s misunderstandings to bring her to faith, so here he works with an unpromising situation to get the people to see what is right before their eyes. This is great good news for all of us, for we are also quite dull at times. We too can have stiff necks. We can be assured that God is trying to break through to the heart of every person we come in contact with, and he may want to use us in the process.
Yes, the Good News, is tough for some people to swallow, but it is imperative that the Truth be still told, in love. Unconditional Love.
Dear Heavenly Father, You asked your followers, “do you want to leave?” And many left. I do not want to leave, for You will not let me go! I understand that to live eternal with You, the Bread of Life, someday, I must believe, accept and tell others. I love You with all my heart, mind and soul. I am learning to love others like You unconditionally and patiently love me. Forgive our dullness at times. Thank You for Your grace and patience. Continue to be with us, O Lord. Make Your desires be ours, for You have me in the palm of Your Hand. In Jesus Name, Amen