61 When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this, He said to them, “Does this offend you?
61 When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this,
The “disciples” here were not the twelve. These disciples ultimately “turned back” from following Jesus (Jn 6:66). Jesus classified them as unbelievers (Jn 6:64).
He said to them,
Jesus clearly understood His audience and the reality of their response to Him. He was not surprised by their unbelief.
“Does this offend you?
The word “offend” means to scandalize. Jesus asked this group whether He seduced or misled them.
Jesus’ audience expected a king Messiah and not someone who would allow Himself to be crucified. He just asserted that He would die to pay for sins. Christ crucified (implied in the discourse on the bread of life) offended the Jews (1 Co 1:23). The idea of a crucified Messiah was scandalous to this crowd.
In addition, Christ’s preexistence in eternity was also a problem to them, as seen in the next verse. Jesus solemnly and simply asked whether these ideas seduced them from the truth.
If people stumbled at the bread of life discourse, how much more would they stumble at the death, resurrection, and ascension of Christ? To them it would be a defeat for the king of Israel and a miracle worker. People cannot take the cross without the ascension.
It is important to remain true to truth.
The cross is a disgusting idea to many today. People rebel against the idea that Jesus shed His blood to forgive sin. Their idea of God is a maudlin, saccharine, sweet person who would never do something so nasty to His Son.
There are preachers today who set forth the unvarnished truth found in the Word of God. Some adherents in churches criticism them for giving such “hard” truth. Congregations should be wary of those who would criticize their pastor for preaching the truth. Many people in churches today reject the claims of the unadulterated Word of God. These people are like those who followed Jesus for superficial reasons. Many people in our churches want to be entertained or strictly have their needs met without consideration of what God has to say.