There are thousands of beverages on the market today. You can quench your thirst with colas and sports drinks, coffee products and tea products, fruit mixes and vegetable mixes, cocktails and hard liquor, beers and near-beers, energy drinks and soothing drinks, hot drinks and frozen drinks…the list goes on. But despite the vast variety of choices, nothing is as satisfying or as good for you as plain, old H2O.
No one has ever improved on simple water for dealing with thirst. The alternatives make you fat, raise your blood pressure, alter your mood (I know, many of you think that’s a good thing), get you addicted or leave you thirsty for more. Water, on the other hand, will do none of these. While it may not tempt like the other options, it satisfies.
And no wonder, our body composition is 60% water. As we use it up or sweat it out, we’ve got to replace it. So, we thirst.
Throughout the Bible, thirst in the physical sense is used to help us understand thirst in the spiritual sense. When Jesus met the woman at the well, she was there because of her physical thirst, but Jesus quickly turned the conversation to one about her spiritual thirst.
“Jesus answered, ‘Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.’” (John 4:13-14)
Jesus is talking about “living water.” It is a spiritual water that satisfies a spiritual thirst. Scripture later tells us that living water is the Holy Spirit (John 7:39) who gives us the Word. Whoever has this water will have eternal life and will never thirst (spiritually) again.
We were created to thirst for God. The Lord didn’t want us to be satisfied living apart from Him, so He created in us a deep need that only He can fill. Several Scriptures remind us of this need:
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? (Psalm 42:1-2)
“But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” (Jeremiah 17:7-8 )
On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” (John 7:37-38 )
Unfortunately, we try to satisfy our thirst with anything but living water. We go after the fattening sweetness of money and entertainment, the extra energy kick of power and fame, the mind-numbingness of drugs and alcohol or the near-beer substitutions of fake gods. None satisfy for long. They just fill us up and dull our spiritual sense so that we can’t tell where the original thirst is coming from. These are our man-made cisterns (i.e., reservoirs for holding water).
“My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water. (Jeremiah 2:13)
We are digging our own cisterns out of inferior materials when we’ve got the spring of living water available to us for free!
The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life. (Revelation 22:17)
If only we would hear His call and respond like the woman at the well! She came carrying a water jar so that she could draw water from Jacob’s well. But having encountered The Lord and having heard of the living water, which only He could provide, she dropped her physical water jar and drew deeply from the spiritual well of Jesus.
How long has it been since you visited the Well? It’s open to all who thirst, and it’s the only thing that satisfies. Open your Bible today, and take a sip.