Summary of John 4:1-18
Jesus was on his way to Galilee from Judea, so he had to go through Samaria. Samaria was the shortest distance between the two places, but Jesus had to go through Samaria for another reason. He had a divine appointment with a Samaritan woman at a well.
Jesus was tired from the journey, so he sat down at Jacob’s well. A Samaritan woman came there to draw water. Jesus asked her for a drink of water. The woman was surprised that Jesus, a Jew, was asking her, a Samaritan woman, for water, since Jews did not associate with Samaritans.
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.” V. 10
The woman then asked Jesus where he could get this living water.
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.”
The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.” Vv. 13-15
Jesus had an interesting response to the woman’s request. He told her to go call her husband and to come back. And it is important here that we connect Jesus’ response to her with her request, for this was not an arbitrary response on Jesus’ part. He wasn’t ignoring her request, either.
The woman then responded to Jesus by telling him that she had no husband, and Jesus acknowledged that she had told the truth. The fact is, he told her, that she had had five husbands and that the man she now had was not her husband.
Living Water and Eternal Life
Going back to verse 10, Jesus’ reference to the “gift of God” was really to himself. He is God’s gift to us. He is our salvation. He is our hope. He is our healing. He is our life. He is eternal life. He is God’s grace to us. Only in him can we be saved from our sins and have eternal life with God.
And the living water that he gives is eternal life with God, it is his life giving Spirit, it is new life in Jesus Christ by faith in him. It is our salvation from our bondage to sin, and it is empowerment of the Spirit of God to live in his holiness and righteousness for the glory and praise of God.
For, what do the Scriptures teach with regard to what wells up to eternal life or what results in or ends in eternal life with God?
• Belief in Jesus Christ – Jn 3:16, 36
• Partaking in the living water Jesus gives us – Jn 4:13-14
• Honoring God, the Father and God, the Son; belief – Jn 5:22-24
• Participating with Jesus in his death and resurrection – Jn 6:35-57
• Listening to and following Jesus in obedience – Jn 10:27-30
• Persistence in doing the good God requires – Rom 2:6-8
• Living free from sin and as slaves of God – Rom 6:16-23
• Sowing to please the Spirit of God – Gal 6:7-8
So, to drink this water that Jesus gives us, which wells up to eternal life, is more than a cursory profession of faith in Jesus Christ. It is full participation with Christ in his death to sin and his resurrection to new life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness (Rom 6:1-23; Eph 4:17-24; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Lu 9:23-26; Tit 2:11-14).
It is honoring God by dying with him to sin and living to him and to his righteousness in the power of God’s Spirit living within us. It is listening to our Lord via the study of his word (in context) and via listening to the promptings of the Holy Spirit in our hearts, and then doing what he says.
And it is walking according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh, living to please God in all that we are and do and say. It is doing the works of the Spirit that he planned for us to do from before the creation of the world, as his workmanship. And it is living in freedom from bondage to sin and as slaves of God and of his righteousness (Eph 2:10; Rom 6 and 8).
“Sir, Give Me This Water”
When the woman asked Jesus for this water so that she would never be thirsty again, Jesus had an odd response to her. He told her to go call her husband and to come back. But Jesus knew she had no husband, so why did he tell her this?
I believe it was his gentle way with her in getting her to own up to her sins. For, this was his response to her request when she asked for the water. For what does the water represent? It represents our new lives in Christ Jesus, dead to our old lives of sin, now living to him and to his righteousness.
He was letting her know that the living water that he gives would give her a new life in him, not like the old life she had been living. For what he was offering her was not like her old life. This was something new, something she didn’t already have, but that she needed.
But it was also to reveal to her who he is, not just a prophet, but the Messiah, the Christ who was to come to save God’s people from their sins (Jn 4:25-26). He had now come, and he was offering to save her from her sins and to give her eternal life with him.
And he is offering the same to everyone who does not yet know him by faith in him, which includes all those who profess faith in him but who have not yet partaken of his death and resurrection, but who are still living in sin, in the flesh, and who do not have this living water welling up to eternal life.
He is saying to leave your lives of sin behind you to follow him in obedience to his will for your life, to die with him to sin, and to live to him and to his righteousness, by faith in him, in the power of his Spirit. And this will result in eternal life with God (Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Lu 9:23-26).
Seek the Lord
An Original Work / July 20, 2012
Based off Isaiah 55
“Come to Me all you who thirst; come to waters.
Listen to Me, and eat what’s good today,
And your soul will delight in richest of fare.
Give ear to Me, and you will live.
I have made an eternal covenant with you.
Wash in the blood of the Lamb.”
Seek the Lord while He may be found; call on Him.
Let the wicked forsake his way, in truth.
Let him turn to the Lord, and he will receive mercy.
Freely, God pardons him.
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,”
declares the Lord, our God.
“My word that goes out of My mouth is truthful.
It will not return to Me unfulfilled.
My word will accomplish all that I desire,
And achieve the goal I intend.
You will go in joy, and be led forth in peace.
The mountains will burst into song… before you,
And all of the trees clap their hands.”