The Water of Life

KEY VERSE: “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.” —John 7:37


WE SAW in our study last week that literal bread—or food in general—is essential to the sustenance of human life. Today our study stresses another fundamental need—water. How fitting it is, therefore, that our Lord Jesus should be pictured in the Scriptures as the source of the water of life! And his promise is that all who sincerely thirst for that life-giving water shall be filled!

The setting for today’s lesson is again the wilderness, and again the Lord God graciously supplies the needs of his people. When the Israelites complained about the lack of water the Lord directed Moses to smite the rock, assuring him that it would bring forth life-sustaining water for them to drink. “And thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel.” (Exod. 17:1-7) Recalling this divine illustration in the life of God’s typical people, Paul writes, “Our fathers … did all drink of the spiritual Rock that followed them; and that Rock was [or pictured] Christ.”—I Cor. 10:1-5

On one occasion it was necessary for Jesus to pass through Samaria, and thus he came to Jacob’s well. A woman of Samaria came to draw water, and at once our Lord seized the opportunity to give a lesson. When he asked the woman for a drink she said, “How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria?” with which people, as the woman knew, the Jews had no dealings. Jesus answered, “If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. … Whosoever drinketh of this [literal] water [of the well] shall thirst again: but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst.” Jesus then reminded the woman of details relating to her personal life, to which she replied, “Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet. … I know that Messiah cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.” Jesus replied, “I that speak unto thee am he.” The account continues, “And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman … and … believed because of his own word; and said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world.”—John 4:1-42

Thus we see that Jesus’ mission at his first advent was to preach the word of salvation; to prove by miracles that he was truly the long-promised Messiah; and to invite believers to walk in his sacrificial footsteps, seeking to gain the glorious prize of life and immortality as sons of the Most High God. To these Jesus said, “He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation,” or judgment, with the world of mankind. To those who are faithful unto death he promised, “I will give to thee the crown of life [immortality].” (Rev. 2:10, Diaglott) These faithful ones are the little flock who drink deeply of the water of life, and who will become the honored bride of their Lord Jesus in the kingdom. And the invitation to sacrifice is still going out!

But what of the countless billions, remembered only by Jehovah God, who lived and died during those long centuries prior to our Lord Jesus’ first advent? And what of all those since who have never heard, or never clearly understood the call to walk in Jesus’ steps? Again we see the boundless love and mercy of the Heavenly Father, and the lengths and breadths of his great plan of salvation, not only for the relatively few, faithful ones of the present Gospel Age, but for the entire world of mankind! The Scriptures abundantly show that when Christ’s kingdom is established during his second advent these too, shall all, every one, be resurrected from the dead, and be given a sympathetic opportunity to gain perfect, everlasting life here on the restored planet Earth. To these our Lord Jesus and his glorified church will lovingly and patiently minister for a thousand years. To these the Spirit and the bride will gently say, Come! “Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” And live forever! Truly, our Lord Jesus gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.!—John 5:25.26; Acts 3:19-22; 24:15; I Tim. 2:5,6; Rev. 22:17

Dawn Bible Students Association
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