The Lord’s Prayer: Our Daily Bread
“Yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.”
1 Corinthians 8:6
Early on in my process of becoming comfortable leading any sort of Christian gathering, I sat down with my family on Easter in the midst of the Covid outbreak and led a communion devotional. I gathered some thoughts on the cup and did the same for the bread. A word stuck out to me as I studied the theme of bread in scripture, and that word is sustenance. A word I rarely used prior to that study, but now consistently use in my prayers.
What sustains us? The typical Sunday school answer of “Jesus” is the correct answer, but what does that mean? In all four gospels the writers record Jesus feeding the multitude of people miraculously supplying an abundance of bread and fish to a crowd of His followers. Feeding a crowd of Israelites in a similar way that Moses and their ancestors were fed in the wilderness. The main difference being that this time the prophet himself supplied the bread. Jesus is not just simply another Moses, but someone and something better.
After Christ feeds the crowd in John 6, Jesus goes across the lake without a boat to meet up with His disciples. The crowd hurried to meet Him on the other side, asking Him to perform more signs in order to prove His Moses-like authority. His response is this, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” (John 6:32-33) This last statement has a double meaning. The bread of God is the manna that came down from heaven during the Israelite exodus, but it also gives life to the entire world. Something the Manna did not accomplish. This excites the crowd as they ask Him to supply them with this bread of God. Jesus reveals the second meaning of His statement when he reveals, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” (John 6:35)
Jesus not only has the ability to provide the bread, but He himself is the bread. Jesus is our sustainer and our sustenance. Whoever goes to Him will be satisfied. So yes, Jesus asks the Father to continue to provide us with our day to day bread, but it seems it is deeper than that. We can eat sourdough all day long, but physical food does not have the ability to bring us long lasting contentment. Jesus, the bread of life can bring that fulfillment into our lives physically and spiritually. He makes complete we who are incomplete. Mankind needs something deeper than three square meals a day. A spiritual healing and fullness that only Christ can provide.
“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord my whole life long.”