41 The Jews then complained about Him, because He said, “I am the bread which came down from heaven.” 42 And they said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that He says, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”
Jesus was now in Capernaum, His current home town. He now vindicated His message in verses 41ff. The Jews objected to Jesus’ claim to eternal preexistence.
The Jews then complained about Him,
The unbelieving Jews here were those listening in the synagogue at Capernaum. They complained among themselves about a statement He made in verse 35: “I am the bread of life.”
because He said, “I am the bread which came down from heaven.”
The Jews’ question revolved around how a person could be both from earth and from heaven (Mr 6:3; Lu 4:22).
Jesus asserted a second “I am” statement here, emphasizing His preexistent state in eternity past and becoming incarnated. The leading Jews clearly understood Jesus’ claim for eternally preexisting as God.
And they said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph,
They knew of Joseph as Jesus’ legal father, but they did not know about His virgin birth and incarnation.
whose father and mother we [emphatic] know?
The following verses will show that people cannot come to God independently but need divine enablement to do so. All these people could see was the human genealogy of Jesus.
How is it then that He says, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”
Knowledge of Jesus’ earthly origin caused these people to reject His origin from eternity. Their skepticism and unbelief was palpable. They could think only scornfully of Jesus on a human level. The Jews clearly understood Jesus’ claim about Himself. They took His claim as extravagant.
The Jews thought that they had evidence to the contrary of Jesus’ claim. They readily impugned His credibility. They accused Him of improper presumption. However, this was nothing more than an evasion of the issue. The spirit of these people was wrong; they were not open to the truth.
A human viewpoint approach to God always misses the glory of Christ.
Jesus came down from heaven because He was the “logos” (the Word), the one who communicated from eternity (Jn 1:1, 14).
Familiarity breeds contempt. The leaders of the synagogue reacted to Jesus out of familiarity. Familiarity in spiritual things can be dangerous.