Then they said to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.” (John 6:28-29)
What Is The Work Of God?
Feeding more than five thousand people at one time would be a monumental task for anyone to undertake. To do so with only five barley loaves and two small fish would be nothing short of the power of God. Jesus exhibited one of the great miracles when He fed five thousand plus people from such meager rations with twelve baskets full of the fragments of the five barley loves leftover. The response of the people was immediate. They wanted to make Jesus of Nazareth their next king and they were willing to do so with force. Jesus retired to the mountain by Himself alone joining His disciples later that night on the voyage across the sea toward Capernaum.
The next day the crowds came looking for Jesus. Their hunger had returned and they desired the wonderful barley loaves and delicate fish of the day before. When they found Jesus they derided Him for not telling them where He had gone. The Lord knew the only reason they came looking for Him was that their stomachs were empty and they wanted to be fed once again. Everyone could see the miracle of Jesus as it unfolded the day before. Five thousand men sat down as twelve disciples continually passed out an abundance of bread and fish but what they refused to see was the work of God in the miracle. They were only interested in having their hunger filled. This should have been a clear testimony that Jesus was the Son of God.
When the people asked Jesus what should do that they could work the works of God, He responded not with the eating of bread and fish but the foundation of obedience to the will of God. The work of God is to believe in Him whom He sent. When the people were eating the bread the day before they could not see the power of God because they were not looking for the power of God. Denying the miracle denied the One who performed the miracle. How sad that five thousand people witnessed one of the greatest miracles of history and they could not see the power of God in Jesus.
The work of God is to believe in the power of God. Paul would write about the foolishness of the cross that became a stumbling block to so many. When the world looks at the cross of Jesus they do not see the glory of God but the failed life of a common man executed as a criminal by the Romans. The work of God is to believe in the power of the word and to accept the will of God in obedience. Many would turn away from Jesus and never follow Him again because His teachings were hard and Jesus offended them.
Preaching a crucified Savior does not appeal to most people today because they are looking for some greater sign than the cross of Jesus Christ. The work of God that leads to salvation is found in believing that Jesus is the Son of the Divine and accepting His word as words of eternal life. There is no other way to the Father but the way Jesus, the truth Jesus and the life Jesus. If a man will not believe in Jesus there is no other work that will save Him. What sign will God perform then, that the world may see it and believe? Jesus came to the earth two thousand years ago. He is the bread of life and all that believe in Him will have everlasting life.