A Well of Water

Some people worry so much over a cellphone lost or misplaced without realizing that losing water is much more important than losing the cellphone, which is quite replaceable. For people in industrialized countries or first-world countries, water resources may not be a huge problem for many. But, third-world countries know what water shortage means and how water is such an important and basic necessity for life, more than a piece of high-end sleek metal, such as a cellphone. Even when abundance may let us forget how important the basic needs, such as water, their need to man’s survival and comfort remain the same in all generations.

Imagine life with water shortage or no water at all. Life isn’t possible without water. Science says that the adult human body is made up of 60% of water. The earth is covered with 75℅ of water. Water is just part of us and everything we do. Even when we look for a house, one of the things we always check is the water system.

This great significance of water to life is the very point that Jesus Christ used when He talked to the Samaritan woman at the well (John 4).

It must be just an ordinary usual day for the Samaritan woman to do her routine of drawing water from the well. But this time, she met a Jew who did not just speak to her but also asked her for a drink. It was shocking because the Samaritan woman knew well that Jews at that time don’t speak to Samaritans (John 4:9).

This story in the Bible illustrates to us how Jesus is so unlike man. He doesn’t think and feel the way we do. Jesus breaks hatred and barriers. He shows love and acceptance regardless of color and race. He totally demonstrated this when he talked to the Samaritan woman.

What did Jesus and the Samaritan woman talk about at the well? Well, Jesus full of wisdom, confronted the woman about her sin. He started the conversation by asking for water to drink. Isn’t it so timely and relevant? God is like that. He demonstrated His presence unexpectedly. He’s always around but He tends to show up in ways we least expect and at just the right moment in time. Just like how He showed up to the Samaritan woman.

Jacob’s well from which the Samaritan woman draws water is symbolic of the well of water that God gives us through Jesus Christ. The Samaritan woman could easily understand the allusion that Jesus was trying to point out to her because drawing water was a significant part of her life.

Jesus Christ gives a well of water that springs up to eternal life. It is clear that the Samaritan woman knew how important water is to their daily life. When Jesus offered her a water that would satisfy her and in which she would never thirst again, she immediately asked Jesus to give her that kind of water so that she would not have to travel all the way to the well to draw water.

“Jesus answered her, ‘Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again,
but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never thirst again; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.’
The woman said to him, ‘Sir, give me this water, so that I don’t get thirsty, neither come all the way here to draw.’ “

– John 4:13-15 (WEB)

It was obvious that Jesus was not talking about the physical water. The Samaritan woman only realized this when Jesus told her of her sin — that the man she was with isn’t her husband because she had already 5 husbands previously (John 4:17-19).

When God meets us and we come face to face with Him, He confronts us with our sins. He doesn’t cover up sins and He does not tolerate sins. He lovingly and honestly points them out to us just like how He did with the Samaritan woman. At the same time, He gives us hope just like how He gave hope to the Samaritan woman when he offered her the spiritual water that can truly satisfy her soul.

After getting the second shock of her life at being told of her sin by a stranger, she finally realized who she was talking to and believed in Jesus Christ, the Messiah.

The woman said to him, ‘I know that Messiah comes,’ (he who is called Christ). ‘When he has come, he will declare to us all things.
Jesus said to her, ‘I am he, the one who speaks to you.‘…
So the woman left her water pot, and went away into the city, and said to the people,
‘Come, see a man who told me everything that I did. Can this be the Christ?

– John 4:25-26, 28-29 (WEB)

We physically thirst for water and know what it means to be thirsty. We know how water can refresh our physical body. Jesus Christ is telling us exactly this when he talks about the well of water that satisfies for eternity. When we thirst and seek spiritual water, Jesus Christ can satisfy our thirst and renew our spirit. We have different thirsts that nag at us. They are inside us and they are not always obvious to other people. But all of us have that “thirst” in our spirit because we are just like that Samaritan woman. We have sins that we try to hide. Jesus Christ knows it all even before we confess the truth. Yet, He still loves us and invites us to repent and live anew by drawing water from Him.

Seek Jesus Christ and draw water from Him that can give you life for eternity. He is inviting you today to put your faith in Him. Your past sins do not matter to the great love He has for you. Whatever you had done in the past, He already knew it. You just need to confess it to Him, believe in Jesus, and follow Him.

More of God

Let it be more of God. When we are deeply engrossed with the works of God, such as in a ministry, we may lose focus and, without knowing it, we start doing things our own way. This doesn’t only happen in ministries or church works. It may happen in our day to day life. We may be sincerely following Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, but at some point, we start exemplifying who we are and not who Christ is. It’s not wrong to show who we are. The point is, when we serve others and when we serve Christ, do people see Christ or do they see us doing the good works?

There is a tiny line between glorifying self and glorifying God when we are there in the arena actively juggling affairs in the kingdom of God.

There are two times in our life when we are most tempted to forget God — in our lowest point and in our highest point. When we are actively serving in the church, actively giving, actively sharing, and actively working in ways God called us to do, the enemy and the flesh can override us and make take a jab at our ego. This is possible if we are not sober-minded and we forget that the devil is like a prowling roaring lion seeking someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8). It is because success has its vulnerability as well. The flesh is not immune to this vulnerability even when relating to works of obedience to God.

It is crucial for any Christian to constantly set his or her mind on God. Let the will of God take over. Let His presence reign. Let His Word preside. Let His name alone be glorified.

We must decrease. When John the Baptist was baptizing at Aenon, his disciples had a discussion with a Jew and they told him that Jesus was also baptizing and that many people are going to Jesus to be baptized.

When people around us start comparing our works with others, it may breed fruits apart from the work of the Holy Spirit. It may cause us to feel jealous or even bitter. But, John the Baptist, understood His calling. He understood His place in the kingdom of God. Above all, he knew where glory belongs. It doesn’t belong to him.

John the Baptist’s reply is worth emulating.

John answered, “A man can receive nothing, unless it has been given him from heaven.
You yourselves testify that I said, ‘I am not the Christ,’ but, ‘I have been sent before him.’
He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice. This, my joy, therefore is made full.
He must increase, but I must decrease.”

– John 3:27-30 (WEB)

Doing God’s works and fulfilling His will for us should make our joy full. We must decrease and let Christ increase as we do the works He called us to do.

When we put our focus to Christ alone, we are not disrupted by how people perceive us or how many follow us. Because we know that it’s never about us. It’s all about Christ. It’s never about the good works we do, but the enabling power of God in us. It’s never about how good we are, but how gracious Jesus is!

Let Jesus Christ increase! More of Him and less of us. Let His Spirit fully take us captive to align our walk to His will.

Let all glory, all honor, all praises, all adoration, and all exultation be to Christ alone.

Born of the Spirit

There are two types of people walking on earth — one is born of the flesh and the other is born of the spirit. One is born once, the other is born twice. One inherits the earthly kingdom, the other inherits God’s kingdom. One bears fruit of the flesh, the other bears fruit of the Spirit. One walks by the flesh, the other walks by the Spirit. One relies on self, the other depends on God. One gives in to the flesh, the other denies the flesh. One is a resident of this world, the other is a resident of heaven. One follows the world, the other follows Jesus Christ.

We may wonder like Nicodemus,

“Nicodemus said to him, ‘How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?’ “

– John 3:4 (WEB)

How is it possible that a man be born twice? But, it is possible. Christians who truly follow God were born twice. They were born in the flesh and born again in the spirit.

Unless a person is born by the Spirit, He can’t understand the things of God. He won’t be able to see and understand what the Word of God means. Like Nicodemus, a Pharisee or a teacher of Israel, yet he could not understand the words of Jesus Christ (John 3:10).

Jesus answered him, “Most assuredly, I tell you, unless one is born anew, he can’t see the Kingdom of God.”

– John 3:3 (WEB)

God’s kingdom is for the born in the spirit. Jesus says,

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
Many will tell me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, in your name cast out demons, and in your name do many mighty works?’
Then I will tell them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you who work iniquity.’ “

– Matthew 7:21-23 (WEB)

We are easily impressed with people who do mighty works in the kingdom of God. But, not all of them impress God. There are some who are not truly born of the spirit. They operate in the flesh. They are counterfeits. They bear an outward likeness but they’re not genuine inside. They are like dross. They are like fool’s gold. They are outwardly shining but they cast gloom around them. They don’t shine as lights of the world. They don’t live as salt of the earth. Whatever mighty works they do, God does not recognize them because their hearts are far from Him. They don’t do God’s will. It’s a show for them.

God is not impressed with a show. He looks at the heart. He looks at obedience. When we obey the will of God, we please God. And who are able to obey God? Only those who are born of the spirit. Their lives are controlled by the Spirit of God. They understand the things of God. They seek after God. They set their minds on the things above. They know the voice of God and they listen to His voice. They are the ones who inherit the kingdom of God. They are the people who call Jesus Lord because Jesus is truly their Lord, their master.

You might be a Christian but you are finding it hard to obey God completely. Know this. God’s mercies never fail and His grace abounds. Like the father who rejoiced and prepared a feast for his prodigal son who returned to him, God is ready to embrace you with His love and rejoice over you when you repent and surrender to Him.

You might be a Christian who fell away because other Christians hurt you. We are in a fallen world and we can encounter many people even in church where sin still reigns in their life. They may hurt us and deceive us. Only God has the power to change them. And only God has the power to heal your heart. Surrender it to the Lord Jesus Christ.

You might not know Jesus Christ as a personal Savior and Lord. You might be one of the people who believe that good works are sufficient to take us to heaven. The Bible says, we need to have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, because it is He alone who can save us from our sins and give us eternal life. The result of placing our faith in Jesus Christ is living a surrendered life. That is, we obey Him. We become regenerated by the Spirit of God. We are born again.

“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

– Romans 6:23 (WEB)

It’s time to be born again. Today is never too late.

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