Is it true that Jesus told the Essenes not to eat breakfast? If so, why?
I was puzzled by the nature of the question since the Essenes are not mentioned in the Bible, though some claim that the Zealots (of which one apostle was once a member) were a branch of the Essenes, just as the Essenes were a branch of the Pharisees. To claim that Jesus told them anything would be only the figment of someone's imagination. Even the Jews recognize that much of Jesus' teachings were contrary to the Essene belief. ("Essenes," Jewish Encyclopedia).
Besides Jesus would not be instructing people to avoid something that he himself did. "Jesus said to them, "Come and eat breakfast." Yet none of the disciples dared ask Him, "Who are You?" --knowing that it was the Lord. Jesus then came and took the bread and gave it to them, and likewise the fish. This is now the third time Jesus showed Himself to His disciples after He was raised from the dead. So when they had eaten breakfast, ..." (John 21:12-15).
There is a false book called "The Essene Gospel of Peace." In it are a host of ridiculous claims attributed to Jesus, among them that one should only eat when the sun is at its highest point and at the evening (leaving out breakfast). Obviously if such were true, then Jesus violated his own command, which cannot be true. Thus, "The Essene Gospel of Peace" is false. Just to give you an idea, the book also claims that you cannot eat the flesh of animals -- a contradiction of the Old and New Testament and again something that Jesus did do (see "Was Jesus a Vegetarian?"). It also forbids the cooking of all foods, only raw vegetables are allowed! But again this contradicts the New Testament where we know Jesus not only ate bread but cooked it for breakfast in John. Throughout the book it teaches the worship of Earth as a goddess, calling the false deity, "our Earth Mother."
All of this comes from Edmond Szekely, a radical vegetarian, who died in 1980. "Proof that Jesus was a vegetarian is based on The Essene Gospel of Peace, which Szekely claims to have translated from an ancient text he supposedly discovered in the 1920s. Szekely alleges that this ancient gospel text is authentic and that the canonical gospels are forgeries. However, no one besides Szekely has ever seen the manuscript. This and other reasons prompt scholars to conclude that The Essene Gospel of Peace is a disreputable forgery." [Is God a Vegetarian? by Richard A. Young, page 5].
"There are three problems with Szekeley’s claims. The first and most significant point is that no one has actually seen any of these manuscripts except Szekeley. The second is that there are serious inconsistencies and other problems in Szekeley’s description of the manuscripts. The third is the content of the manuscripts themselves. Taken as a whole, we can say that not only is there no evidence that the manuscripts are genuine, but that most likely Szekeley’s claims are fraudulent." ["Strange New Gospels" by Keith Akers]. This author goes on to document that the Vatican does not possess the claimed Aramaic originals. That there is no record of Szekeley had been to some of the libraries he claimed to have visited (where records of visiting scholars are kept). And that there is no evidence that Szekeley knew Aramaic, let alone able to translate it.
The people taunting "The Essene Gospel of Peace" are living illustrations of "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables" (II Timothy 4:3-4).