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.” (John 4:10)
–C. H. Spurgeon
How I love this encounter between Jesus and the woman at the well! It is within this meeting that we seem Him perfectly demonstrating to us how to captivate the captive. Jesus has asked this woman for a cup of water, not because he is thirsty, but because he wants to have a conversation with her. Waving off her objection to the differences between the Jews and Samaritans, Jesus avoids an argument and instead turns her attention to something much more important.
He wants her to think. “If you knew the gift of God that is being offered to you …” Jesus came to set the captive free. No longer would those who believe in Him be forced to live in bondage to sin and depravation. He came to give life and life to the full, to show the incomparable riches of God’s grace. There is nothing anyone can do to earn this gift and nothing anyone can do to deserve it.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God–not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8–9)
Jesus holds the gift of life out to all and issues the sweet word to us, “Come”:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28–30)
The “living water” Jesus refers to in our verse for today is the precious Holy Spirit which is given to every believer in Christ. This “living water” empowers us to do God’s work and equips us to experience life to the full.
Take It to Heart
“It is clear then, that there is no hope for me out of Christ: for there is no other blood-shedding which is worth a thought as an atonement for sin. Am I then believing in Him? Is the blood of His atonement truly applied to my soul? All men are on a level as to their need of Him. If we be never so moral, generous, amiable, or patriotic, the rule will not be altered to make an exception for us. Sin will yield to nothing less potent than the blood of Him whom God hath set forth as a propitiation. What a blessing that there is the one way of pardon! Why should we seek another?” (C. H. Spurgeon)