Scripture: Isaiah 12:2-6; John 4:4-15
Do you remember that moment when you were first SAVED; became a Christian, accepted JESUS as your Lord and Savior?
I remember not only the “moment”, on August 15th, 1972, I remember the next day, the next week after. I wanted, I had to share with everyone I came in contact with, what had happened in my life. I sure the people who knew me were thinking, “Yeah, sure things are different in his life. We’ll see.”
I had no idea what “evangelism” was, nor was I familiar with the Bible; although I knew ‘about’ the book, but never read it.
There seemed like there was a fountain of living water, like a fresh water spring bubbling up and flowing out of me. So much so, a young woman who sat next to me in the office, came to Christ that same week from the ‘bubbling over’ , the JOY, the exuberance of my spirit!
I’m sure many of you who are reading my story could share similar conversion stories.
So, what happened? What happened to all the JOY, the EXUBERANCE we once demonstrated in front of others?
I’ll tell you what has happened, you STOPPED DRINKING the Fountain of Life!
YOU NEED ANOTHER DRINK!
You stopped eating The Bread of Life!
YOU NEED TO EAT!
ISAIAH 55:1-2 (NIV Bible):
“COME, ALL you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.
Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.”
ISAIAH 12:2-6 (AMP Bible):
 “Behold, God, my salvation! I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and song; yes, He has become my salvation.  Therefore with joy will you draw water from the wells of salvation.  And in that day you will say, Give thanks to the Lord, call upon His name and by means of His name [in solemn entreaty]; declare and make known His deeds among the peoples of the earth, proclaim that His name is exalted!  Sing praises to the Lord, for He has done excellent things [gloriously]; let this be made known to all the earth.  Cry aloud and shout joyfully, you women and inhabitants of Zion, for great in your midst is the Holy One of Israel.”
MATTHEW 5:6 (AMP Bible):
“Blessed and fortunate and happy and spiritually prosperous (in that state in which the born-again child of God enjoys His favor and salvation) are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God), for they shall be completely satisfied!”
An Old Testament Scenario Keeps Repeating Itself –
Over and over we read in the Book of Judges, “Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD.”
We LEARN from reading of the Book of Judges, Jews repeatedly fell in a cycle of SIN–
A CRY FOR HELP–OUTWARD REPENTANCE–DELIVERANCE THROUGH A JUDGE–A TIME OF PEACE–BACK TO SIN AGAIN.
The Book of Ruth starts out, “IN THE days when the judges ruled there was a famine in the land.”
Why was there a FAMINE in the land? The reason for the famine in the land was because of SIN in the land!
“NO BREAD IN THE HOUSE”!
Bringing the BREAD home!
Bethlehem MEANS “House of Bread.” In Hebrew, Beth-lehem is two words: means “house” (Beth as in BETH-EL, “house of God”) and “bread” (lehem). [See Footnote [i] ].
The reason Elimelech took his wife and kids and moved out-of-town was because the was no bread in the house! (Ruth 1:1-7)
One reason people are not going to church in America anymore is there’s no BREAD in the house!
And the reason there’s no bread in the house is….there’s SIN in the house! The same reason God sent a FAMINE in the time of the JUDGES.
GOD WANTS TO PUT BREAD BACK IN HIS HOUSE…
BUT…we’ve got to pay the price! REPENTANCE–TURNING WHOLEHEARTEDLY BACK TO GOD!
THE BREAD OF LIFE –
It’s no coincidence that JESUS was born in Bethlehem, the House of Bread, because JESUS is the BREAD; He is the Bread of Life and you can’t live without Him!
Coming back to JESUS and satisfy your spiritual hunger.
Many spiritual functions parallel physical functions. As our bodies hunger and thirst, so do our souls. But our souls need spiritual food and water.
WATER AT THE WELL (John 4:4-12 & Isaiah 12:3):
“Give Me a Drink”
Pausing and reflecting on what JESUS said to the Samaritan woman in verse 10:
“If you had only known and had recognized God’s gift and Who this is that is saying to you, Give Me a drink, you would have asked Him [instead] and He would have given you living water.”
*If you want to satisfy your thirst, you must ask for it; you must be earnest in PRAYER to God for it.
Those who have the right knowledge of Christ Jesus will continually seek Him out, and if we fail to seek Him, it is a sign that we don’t know Him.
And they who know Your name [who have experience and acquaintance with Your mercy] will lean on and confidently put their trust in You, for You, Lord, have not forsaken those who SEEK YOU…
Then JESUS continues speaking in verses 13 and 14:
“All who drink of THIS WATER will be thirsty again, But 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
“Obey your thirst!”
All of us church know, we have access to this spring of living water. But we’ve got to continually drink from the fountain! If we don’t, we’ll find ourselves as the man in the introductory image of this blog.
It’s not enough to LIVE on our past experiences with JESUS; not enough to know the ‘spring of water’ is there; it’s not enough to drink once from the fountain of life!
Church, it’s time to get another drink! It is time for all of us to get another drink of the Holy Spirit!
“If anyone is thirsty”
“Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out saying, “If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water'” (John 7:37-38 NAS).
Then John the Apostle explains what JESUS meant by His words (verse 39):
“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.”
Back to the Woman at the Well –
 The woman said to Him, “Sir, I see and understand that You are a prophet.  Our forefathers worshipped on this mountain, but you [Jews] say that Jerusalem is the place where it is necessary and proper to worship.”  Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither [merely] in this mountain nor [merely] in Jerusalem.  You [Samaritans] do not know what you are worshipping [you worship what you do not comprehend]. We do know what we are worshipping [we worship what we have knowledge of and understand], for [after all] salvation comes from [among] the Jews.  A time will come, however, indeed it is already here, when the true (genuine) worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth (reality); for the Father is seeking just such people as these as His worshipers.  God is a Spirit (a spiritual Being) and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth (reality).”  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.”
The lights are beginning to turn on for the Samaritan Woman –
She recognizes JESUS as a prophet because He had supernatural insight into her personal life, exposing SIN.
The next thing she does is to bring up the issue of multiple religions and whose right.
When we’ve ‘WITNESSED’ to people, they frequently bring up this topic: They say something like, “There are lots of RELIGIONS in the world, what makes your religious beliefs the only one? Who’s to say you are right and they are wrong?”
Then they will usually say something like, “I believe there are good things to be gained from ALL religions and that no one religion has the exclusive rights to eternity.”
How then, should we handle this question?
The same way JESUS did!
THE ARGUMENT–Samaritans vs. Jews (John 4:20):
The stated comment in verse 20 highlights the fact that altars were built at Mt. Gerizim [Abraham – Genesis 12:7; Jacob – Genesis 33:20].
Mt. Gerizim was the scene of THE BLESSING of the people (Deut. 27:4); with the tradition that Abraham’s offering of his son Isaac took place on this mountain. Also, where Abraham met Melchizedek at. No wonder this was an issue of heated conversation.
How does JESUS handle it?
He simply refuses to be drawn into the argument. Instead, He predicts that a time is coming when worship will be possible in neither place.
The Samaritan woman appealed to the example of “our fathers” but JESUS points her to the one Father.
JESUS IS CALLING…
What JESUS is calling this woman at the well to do–and also calling us to do, is to learn to WORSHIP the True God, our heavenly Father–not at a particular place, but in spirit and truth.
We must be careful not to consider it WORSHIP just because who showed up on Sunday, Saturday and other days of the week.
Just because we went into a building designated for worship doesn’t mean we worshiped.
We need to LEARN to worship in “SPIRIT and TRUTH.” This means we need to come into God’s presence with complete sincerity and complete honesty.
The OPPOSITE of “TRUTH” –
You can’t lie your way into the presence of God and expect to get away with it:
- IF YOU want God to touch you?
- IF YOU want God to feed you?
- IF YOU want God to satisfy your thirst?
- IF YOU want God to move supernaturally in your life?
- IF YOU want to bring spiritual excitement back into your life?
- IF YOU simply want more God?
Then you NEED to get right with God!
No more “fake it till you make it” approaches to your WORSHIP. You need to confess your sins, change your lifestyle.
If you do WORSHIP IN SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH and you want more of God, then choose to seek His face.
If you find yourself today in a ‘spiritual wilderness’ and you are thirsty…there’s hope!
The fountain is flowing and I don’t know where you are right now in your spiritual life, but for me and my house…“Whew, I need another drink of water!”
Footnotes & Credits:
Footnote [i] : www.desiringgod.org/articles/bethlehem-house-of-bread
Photo/Image Credits: Google Image Search; Photo Pin.
Commentary: Sermons From John – The Gift of Living Water.
Bible Translations: Amplified Bible except where noted in the text.