“From that moment many of His disciples turned back and no longer accompanied Him.” (John 6:66)
Jesus had more than the 12 disciples. He called the 12 disciples “apostles,” but there were many other disciples. Judging from the crowds that attended His teaching and healing events, the number of disciples was significant. A significant number of these decided that they would no longer follow Him when they heard His statements about being the bread of life, superior to manna, and about eating His flesh and drinking His blood. They obviously did not comprehend what He was talking about. He also said that no one could come to Him unless granted by the Father.
Here’s what we learn from this verse: Jesus was unwilling to compromise the truth. As much as He wanted to reach people and gain disciples, He absolutely refused to compromise truth. He was even willing to let them go away rather than compromise the truth.
Those who are committed to Jesus as His disciples definitely want to reach people with the gospel. The eternity of the lost depends on it. There is, however, a line of truth beyond which we must not go. The practice of “accommodation” of the truth should not be followed. Explanation, yes, and clarification, yes, but the practice of accommodation communicates that the truth is not that important, that it is just relative and not absolute. We must by all means reach the lost with the gospel, but not by compromising truth.