Isaiah 12:3-4 & John 4:1-42
Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
Jesus was on historic ground; this was the very well where Jacob had watered the flocks of his family. It was also controversial ground. There had been centuries of hatred and misunderstanding between the Samaritans and the Jewish people. Jesus realized the true openness of these precious people, unlike His disciples, who were totally oblivious to His Father’s love for the Samaritans because of their ethnocentricity and hatred.
Even though He was tired, Jesus refused to have lunch with His disciples. His Father’s gentle leading to go through Samaria had brought Jesus’ acute spiritual senses to a place of heightened awareness. He was there to open a well in that spiritually-parched land—a land forgotten by everyone but Jesus and His Father. The well was not Jacob’s famous well; this well was buried deep within the rubble of a broken life.
Jesus’ choice was an unlikely candidate to become a well of salvation for a whole city. She was living with a man out of wedlock after being married five times. Her shame was so acute that she had come to the well in the heat of the day to avoid being rejected by the other women of the city. Yet, through this seemingly chance meeting, the infamous woman at the well would become a woman with a well.
Jesus’ first words to her seemed a little out of character: “Will you give me a drink?” (John 4:7). How could Jesus ask this poor, broken woman to serve Him? Surely He realized the abuse she had suffered at the hands of men as well as the hatred she felt for Him as a man and a Jew. In reality, however, Jesus’ request was a promise; for before the day ended she would not just get a drink—she would become a drink.
As Jesus’ words slowly disarmed her, He promised her a drink of living water that would quench her thirst forever. Her reply in verse 11 revealed her great thirst: “Where can I get this living water?” His answer revealed one of the most critical aspects of receiving God’s power and life: “Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:14). The internal spring or well spoken of here is a metaphor for the new nature every believer receives when they trust in Christ. Essentially, the moment you were born again, your human spirit was reunited with the Spirit of God. With this reunification, your whole being came under the powerful influence of the Holy Spirit. The concept of having a new nature is seen throughout Scripture:
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
2 CORINTHIANS 5:17 (ESV)
Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is the new creation.
This new nature is the channel through which the living waters of God flow into your life. In order to understand how the waters of God’s life flow into us, think about running water or indoor plumbing. If you don’t have the luxury of running water in your home (like the woman in this story), the bucket or container you use at your source provides a perfect metaphor for God’s living water. Despite the fact that you have access to this water, you must open a faucet (or draw a bucket) to use it.
It is no different in our spiritual lives; we do not have a water supply problem. We have a usage problem. We are simply not turning on our spiritual faucets. In the context of John 4, the living water Jesus is speaking of is received through drinking. Drinking here is synonymous with the whole concept of worshiping God through the spiritual disciplines:
“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”
No matter which spiritual discipline we are worshiping God through (reading the Word, worship/praise, waiting on God, etc.), our spiritual faucets open and we can drink from the living waters that flow out of the Godhead. The longer we linger in God’s presence, the more we are saturated in His life, power, presence, and joy. These spiritual waters, however, don’t need to remain within us. Like the woman at the well, if we drink enough, the flow of God’s life can create an overflow of transforming power into the world around us. In fact, the ultimate purpose of drinking from the wells of salvation (as we read in Isaiah 12:3-4) is the transformation of the nations through the proclamation of His name.
Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. And because of his words many more became believers. They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”
It is time to take a long drink from the well of salvation. Remember, the moment you were converted, your human spirit was reunited with the Holy Spirit, forming a new nature within you. Now, every time you practice one of the spiritual disciplines, the very waters of life we see in Revelation 22:1-2 will flow spiritually into you.
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.
Select a Scripture. You can select one based on your current need, an impression of the Holy Spirit, recent messages you have heard, or randomly out of your Bible reading. For today’s purpose, let’s use John 4:23-24:
“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”
Read these Scripture verses out loud a few times. If you’re in public, you can whisper. Allow your reading and speaking to merge into prayer. Begin to pray these Scriptures. As you are praying, lift your hands. Begin to praise and thank God melodically in your native language as well as the gift of tongues (if you have already received that gift). As you wait quietly, allow the living waters of the Godhead to wash over and into your soul. Now verbalize the burdens you have been carrying.
- Pray for your pastor and his or her family.
- Pray for your church.
- Pray for one of Every Nation’s six regions on page 27.
- Ask for the Holy Spirit’s transformation in the area of resistance you targeted yesterday.
- Record any pertinent thoughts, Scriptures, or impressions from the Holy Spirit.