What Did Jesus Disciples Find Difficult in His Bread of Life Discourse?

When Jesus proclaimed that he was the bread of life, many of his disciples found it difficult to accept. He stated, “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). This statement was not only challenging for his disciples but also for many who followed him.

What is the Bread of Life Discourse?

The Bread of Life Discourse is a teaching given by Jesus in John chapter six. It begins with Jesus feeding five thousand people with just five loaves of bread and two fish.

Afterward, the people were amazed at what they had witnessed and wanted to make him their king. However, Jesus withdrew from them and went up on a mountainside to pray.

Later that evening, his disciples got into a boat and set out across the lake toward Capernaum. While they were crossing the lake, a storm came up, and Jesus walked on water to reach them. When they arrived safely on the other side of the lake, many people were waiting for them.

Why Did His Disciples Find it Difficult?

When Jesus proclaimed that he was the bread of life, his disciples found it difficult to understand what he meant. They had seen him perform miracles like feeding five thousand people with just five loaves of bread and two fish or healing people from diseases that no one else could cure.

However, when Jesus told them that he was the bread of life that came down from heaven, many couldn’t believe it. They knew his mother and father and couldn’t understand how he could make such claims.

The Hard Teachings

Jesus then went on to explain further by saying, “Very truly I tell you unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood; you have no life in you” (John 6:53). This was a hard teaching for his disciples to accept. Many of them found it difficult to imagine eating flesh and drinking blood, even symbolically.

Furthermore, some of them began to doubt Jesus’s authority and questioned his teachings. They couldn’t accept that he was the Son of God and the savior of the world.

The Turning Point

After Jesus saw that many of his disciples were having difficulty accepting his teachings, he asked them if they wanted to leave him too. Peter then spoke up and said, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:68).

Peter’s confession was a turning point for many of Jesus’s disciples who stayed with him. They began to understand that Jesus was not talking about literal bread but rather spiritual sustenance. He was offering himself as the ultimate sacrifice for their sins so that they could have eternal life.


The Bread of Life Discourse is a challenging teaching given by Jesus that required faith and belief in him as the Son of God. Many people found it difficult to accept his teachings, especially when he spoke about eating his flesh and drinking his blood.

However, those who remained faithful were rewarded with knowledge and understanding of what Jesus meant when he said he was the bread of life. They recognized that he was offering them spiritual sustenance rather than physical bread.