People of Promise 99 Living Water
Jesus was headed from Judea to Galilee and went through Samaria on the way. And in doing so, He arrived at a Samaritan town called Sychar, near the tract of land that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. And Jacob’s well was there. So Jesus, tired as He was from His journey, sat down [to rest] by the well. It was then about the sixth hour (about noon) (John 4:5). The story then goes on to relate Jesus’ interactions with the Woman at the Well. This is the story from which the name for this study is taken. The basis of our Jacob’s Well Bible Study is what Jesus tells her: He has water to give her. He points out that drinking water from the well will slack her thirst for a while, but then she will be thirsty again. But, He notes, whoever takes a drink of the water that I will give him shall never, no never, be thirsty any more. But the water that I will give him shall become a spring of water welling up (flowing, bubbling) [continually] within him unto (into, for) eternal life (John 4:14).
Of course she has no idea what Jesus is talking about and asks for His water so she won’t have to come and get water at the well every day. As we know, from our perspective, Jesus was not talking about physical water. In fact, He wasn’t talking about any kind of water. He was talking about giving her what she needed to satisfy her deepest need, even if she didn’t know what her deepest need was. It’s interesting that He says water and not food. That’s because the single most limiting factor for land organisms is water. We can go for long periods with little or no food, but only for a few days without water. We can’t live at all without God.
Note the following facts: (1) She was a “she.” Jewish men didn’t talk to unknown women without someone to make an introduction. (2) She was a Samaritan; a “hated” sect to the Jews. In fact, the Jews would usually avoid going through Samaria when they travelled. This animosity arose in the dim past well before Nehemiah was rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem. But obviously there was an ancestral relationship between the Samaritans and the Jews because the woman asks Jesus, Are You greater than and superior to our ancestor Jacob, who gave us this well and who used to drink from it himself, and his sons and his cattle also? (John 4:12). Regardless, the Jews hated the Samaritans, and here was Jesus, not angry, not hateful, talking to a Samaritan woman. And not just talking, but talking in a way that was engaging and deeply insightful. In fact, she was stunned that Jesus would speak to her at all: The Samaritan woman said to Him, How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me, a Samaritan [and a] woman, for a drink?—For the Jews have nothing to do with the Samaritans—(John 4:9). Jesus doesn’t care who we are, He wants to engage every one of us and offer us “Living Water.”
The questions become, (1) what is Living Water, besides a good name for a church, (2) how did Jesus know she (we) needed it, (3) what would it do for her (us), and (4) how does one obtain this Water? Well, first of all, the Living Water is an ongoing, living relationship with God through Christ Jesus, sustained by the Holy Spirit. This Living Water that Jesus gives is not stagnant; it bubbles forth out of His brothers and sisters like artesian springs that never dry. He who believes in Me [who cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me] as the Scripture has said, From his innermost being shall flow [continuously] springs and rivers of living water (John 7:38). Continuous. Our witness of who we are in Christ is ever present, and we need to be aware of it and allow it to bubble forth whenever the occasion is right—which is basically all the time. The world watches, and when the Living Water is not evident, the world knows, and mocks us as the hypocrites that we are in those times.
Of course Jesus knows all our needs, especially our need for Him. That’s the way God designed us. In the very beginning of humanity, God said, Let Us [Father, Son, and Holy Spirit] make mankind in Our image, after Our likeness (Gen 1:26). God is Three in One, One in Three, and He wanted us to be in intimate relationship with His Oneness and His Threeness. He put in us need, not just a desire, but real, honest need, to be a part of Him and Him a part of us.
Even those who have given their lives to Him through Christ Jesus need Him every moment of every day. Not so He can “supply our every need” like some carny magician, but so that He can help us to grow up in Him and become more than we have ever dreamed possible. It fact, without His help it would be impossible. He knows the heart of every person (1Sam. 16:7). And, of course, He knew why He was here and what He came to give to everyone who would ask.
This Water satisfies our deepest need, which is the need to be in a relationship with God. And it’s so easy to get it. The [Holy] Spirit and the bride (the church, the true Christians) say, Come! And let him who is listening say, Come! And let everyone come who is thirsty [who is painfully conscious of his needof those things by which the soul is refreshed, supported, and strengthened]; and whoever [earnestly] desires to do it, let him come, take, appropriate, and drink the water of Life without cost (Rev. 22:17). And He [further] said to me, It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I [Myself] will give water without price from the fountain (springs) of the water of Life (Rev. 21:6).
This Living Water is promised to everyone, without restriction (Rom. 10:13). All one has to do to receive the Living Water that Jesus offered the Woman at the Well, is to ask Him for it. It’s interesting to note that the Woman at the Well knew of the coming Messiah, and Jesus confirms that He is the One. The woman said to Him, I know that Messiah is coming, He Who is called the Christ (the Anointed One); and when He arrives, He will tell us everything we need to know and make it clear to us. Jesus said to her, I Who now speak with you am He (John 4:25-26). Because of her confession she was, indeed given Living Water and went and rounded up the whole town (John 4:28-30). Many were saved because of the spring that bubbled forth from her (John 4:39-42).
We all need to look into our own hearts and see that spring of Living Water which Jesus set there. We need to allow it to flow freely at all times so that others can see Christ in us, and be drawn to His amazing grace.