Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”
Jesus had an encounter with a Samaritan woman who was getting water at Jacobs well. During their exchange Jesus asked for a drink of water, which shocked her because Jesus was a Jew conversing with a Samaritan. This was an unusual occurrence in the region surrounding Jerusalem where Samaritans were despised by Jews who considered them defiled because they were a mixed race. When others look down on us, Jesus watches over us with love and compassion, just as he did with this woman who was marginalized and made to feel ashamed of herself.
After He got her attention in this encounter, Jesus said “If you knew the gift of God” — this is a very provocative statement, because it assumes that there is something that she is missing, something that she does not know. He immediately follows up with another statement that draws her closer to Him; “and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink“ — this is an open invitation to know Him. He is essentially revealing Himself to her in a non threatening manner. Then the Master uses her very occupation at that moment, which was to get water from the well to take back to her village, to quench the thirst of the thirsty, when He goes on to say “you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” Now it is on her to ask for the very thing that she and others need to survive in the natural. She does not yet understand the spiritual significance of the conversation, but she now knows that there is a man that she does not know, who has given her an invitation to get to know Him, and He offered her living water.
By this time, her interest is aroused, so she seeks understanding in verses 11 & 12: The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?” In order to help her understand the limitations of the natural use of water, and the eternal power of the water He offers, Jesus responds to her question and said to her —“Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”
In the simplicity of this exchange, this woman is now moving toward the Lord Jesus, and she desires what He has offered her — The woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw.” Although she was not yet able to distinguish the natural use from the spiritual significance of water. Clearly, she is drawing nearer to Him. She had no idea what she really needed when she came to the well to do what she had done routinely in the past. What do you need? How can the things that hinder you temporarily, be extinguished eternally?
The living waters that Jesus offered to this woman, which she ultimately received, changed her life forever. The Lord revealed a mystery to her in a language that she was able to grasp, and she became a catalyst to the conversion of many in her city. Those who once looked down upon her, were sitting at the feet of Jesus, because of her witness —The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, “Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ?” Then they went out of the city and came to Him. John 4:28-30
When we have an encounter with Jesus, we like the Samaritan woman, come to realize that the things which occupy our time are not as important as eternal life; she dropped her water pot and pointed everyone who would listen to Jesus. Her gift of evangelism was released in the instant that the mystery of living waters was revealed.
May the mystery of living waters be revealed to you today. So that you will be energized to compel others to come and sit at the feet of Jesus who is the Christ!