Advent Flow #16 - NAME OF GOD: Living Water
Jesus answered her, “if you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”
– John 4:10
NAME OF GOD: Living Water
by Laura Bodine
One of my very favorite stories in the New Testament is Jesus’ interaction with the Samaritan woman at the well as told in John chapter 4. I love this story because Jesus purposefully sought out someone not even seeking Him. A woman considered a nobody by others. She was seen not just as worthless by economic and societal standards, but when Jesus came to her, she was also living an immoral life.
The Jews and the Samaritans had a mutual disdain for one another so the fact that Jesus, a Jew, would even enter Samaria let alone take the time to rest there was a big deal. Also, in Jesus’ day, it wasn’t acceptable for a Jewish man, much less a Rabbi, to speak to any woman in public let alone a Samaritan woman.
The Rabbis also thought that Jewish women should not be taught the Scriptures. So, when Jesus goes beyond merely asking for a drink and directs the conversation into spiritual things with the Samaritan woman, this interaction is off the charts.
In verse 11 of John chapter 4 it says “the woman said to Him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? 12 “Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?” 13 Jesus answered and said to her “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”
Notice that He does not say that He is the living water, but that He would give living water to her, and when she received it, she would never thirst again. Of course, that does not tell us what the living water is. For that, we must go to another passage of Scripture. In this case, Jesus is in the temple surrounded by a throng of worshipers. He suddenly cries out, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scriptures said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’ But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified” (John 7:37–39, emphasis added).
Here Jesus refers to the Holy Spirit as the living water. External influence of the Spirit had always been given in the conversion and sanctification of the Old Testament saints and prophets, but the gift of the Spirit who would indwell believers had not yet been received (Acts 10:44–45). So, though many people say that Jesus is the living water, Jesus Himself intended the phrase to mean the Holy Spirit who dwells in believers and seals them for salvation (Ephesians1:13–14).
It is the ministry of the Spirit, flowing out of a heart redeemed by God, that blesses believers and, through them, brings life and light to the world.
The Holy Spirit is the never-ending fountain of living water. And this living water is meant to fill our lives and then it’s meant to overflow from us in order that others might be served, refreshed and drawn to the Spirit of God that dwells within us. How does one get to a place where they are living a Spirit filled life that overflows to others? We simply ask God for the empowerment of His Spirit. We admit we’re thirsty and desire a life that draws others into a relationship with Jesus.
In Luke 11:13 Jesus said “If you, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?”
Christ is the spring of life that flows from each believer`s depth, as an endless wellhead. The Holy Spirit is the never-ending fountain of living water. When we accept the fullness of the blessings that Jesus offers, he will fully and permanently satisfy the deep thirst of the human soul. We will find peace and we will become a source of blessing for others, just as the woman at the well ultimately became a blessing to those around her. Nothing the world has to offer will ever satisfy the thirst and hunger in our souls. Only Jesus and His Holy Spirit, the Living Water, will quench our thirst forever.
Are you feeling spiritually dry? If so…
How often are you going to the source of living water? Through prayer, time spent in the Word of God and in church where the Spirit flows?
Have you offered this living water to others as Jesus did with the woman at the well?
Lord, we come to you today in need of your Living Water. Walking in this world with distractions and things that pull us from you, remind us that what our souls thirst for and long for is more of You. Empty us of ourselves and empower us by your Holy Spirit to do your work.
We pray our lives would be a source of refreshment and blessing to the people you put in our path. Help us to see others the way you see them. Just as you saw the woman at the well as being of great worth just as she was, we pray you’d give us the ability to see others the same way. Give us the desire to share the great hope we have in you. In Your great and perfect name we pray, Amen.