The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire BibleJohn 6:34
Then said they unto him…
At least some of them:
Lord, evermore give us this bread;
that is so divine and heavenly,
and has such a quickening virtue in it: these words are said by them
either seriously, and to be understood of bread for their bodies, of
which they imagined Christ was speaking; and so sprung from
ignorance of his sense; and from sensuality in them who followed him
for the loaves; and from a covetous disposition, being desirous of
being supplied with such excellent food without charge; and from
idleness, to save labour and pains in working for it; and from a
vain desire of the continuance of this earthly life, being willing
to live for ever, and therefore would have this bread evermore; and
from a gross opinion of plenty and delicacy of corporeal food in the
times of the Messiah; (See Gill on 14:15); or else these words are
spoken ironically, by way of derision, as if there was no such
bread; and if there was, that Christ could not give it. However, the
words may be improved, when considered as a petition coming from,
and suitable to, a sensible and enlightened soul: for such who are
sensible of their famishing condition by nature, and of their need
of Christ, the bread of life, and whose taste is changed, and have
tasted how good this bread is, will earnestly desire always to be
supplied with it, and to live upon it; for nothing is more grateful
to them, and more nourishing and satisfying to their souls; they are
never weary of it; it is always new and delightful to them, and they
always stand in need of it, and wait in the use of means and
ordinances for it; and this has always an abiding, lasting, virtue
in it, to feed their souls, and nourish them up to everlasting life.
Josephus F9 says of the "manna", which was a type of this bread,
that there was such a divine quality in it, that whoever tasted of
it needed nothing else: and the Jews also say F11, that
``in the manna were all kinds of tastes, and everyone of
the Israelites tasted all that he desired; for so it is
written in (Deuteronomy 2:7) , "these forty years the Lord thy God
hath been with thee, thou hast lacked nothing", or "not
wanted anything"; what is anything? when he desired to
eat anything, and said with his mouth, O that I had fat
to eat, immediately there was in his mouth the taste of
fat.--Young men tasted the taste of bread, old men the
taste of honey, and children the taste of oil.''
Yea, they say F12,
``whoever desired flesh, he tasted it, and whoever desired
fish, he tasted it, and whoever desired fowl, chicken,
pheasant, or pea hen, so he tasted whatever he desired.''
And to this agrees what is said in the apocryphal book of
``Thou feddest thine own people with angels' food, and didst
send them from heaven bread, prepared without their labour,
able to content every man's delight, and agreeing to every
taste; for thy sustenance (or manna) declared thy
sweetness unto thy children, and serving to the appetite of
the eater, tempered itself to every man's liking.''
All which must be understood of that pleasure, satisfaction, and
contentment which they had in it; for it was a very uncommon case to
eat it, and live upon it as their common food for forty years
together: and no doubt but that there was something remarkable in
suiting it to their appetites, or giving them appetites suitable to
that, to feed upon it, and relish it for so long a time: twice
indeed in that length of time we read they complained of it, saying,
that they had nothing but this manna before their eyes, and their
souls loathed it as light bread, (Numbers 11:6) (21:5) , and lusted after the
flesh, and the fish they had eaten in Egypt. And so it is with some
professors of Christ, and his Gospel; for there is a mixed multitude
among them, as there was among the Israelites, who disrelish the
preaching of Christ, and the truths of the Gospel respecting his
person, blood, and righteousness, and salvation by him; they cannot
bear to have these things frequently inculcated and insisted upon;
their souls are ready to loath them as light bread, and want to have
something else set before them, more suitable to their carnal
appetites: but to such who are true believers in Christ, who have
tasted that the Lord is gracious, Christ, the true manna, and bread
of God, is all things to them; nor do they desire any other: they
taste everything that is delightful, and find everything that is
nourishing in him.
F9 Antiqu. l. 3. c. 1. sect. 6.
F11 Shemot Rabba, sect. 25. fol. 108. 4.
F12 Bemidbar Rabba, sect. 7. fol. 188. 1.
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Gill, John. "Commentary on John 6:34". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". <http://classic.studylight.org/com/geb/view.cgi?book=joh&chapter=006&verse=034>. 1999.