Lent Devotional: John 7:37-39
by Jonathan Haefs
Today’s devotional is authored by John Kegley
John 7:37-39 (click here to read the entire passage)
On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive, for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
You might be parched right now. Your income might be parched. Your health might be parched. Your emotions might be parched. Your relationships might be parched. Your family situation might be parched. Your soul might be parched. Your longing for God might be parched.
In your parched situation, where are you going to fill your thirst? What things are you giving yourself to in order to feel quenched? Netflix? Facebook? Instagram? The news? Pornography? Food?
In your parched situation, Jesus calls you to repent, to turn away from the idols you have looked upon to deliver you from your parched situation. He says if anyone thirsts, if anyone is parched, if anyone feels like their soul is a barren desert, let them come to him and drink. Whoever comes to him in faith, their heart will overflow with living water.
Maybe you are thinking “What does Jesus mean when he says to come and drink of him?” Maybe you are like the woman at the well in John 4 and wonder “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water?”
Jesus makes these statements while he is at the Feast of Booths. During this Feast, the people of Israel were to make temporary booths or shelters to live in for seven days as a reminder of the time they lived in these temporary shelters after their deliverance from Egypt and during their time in the wilderness. As a part of The Feast, the priest drew water from the pool of Siloam and led the people in procession to the temple where he poured the water into the water basin. This symbolized the many times the Lord provided water for his people while they were in the wilderness. Furthermore, this water ritual foreshadowed the future time where a river would flow out of the temple, bringing life to the whole earth (Ezek. 47:1-12).
In effect, Jesus is claiming to be the very God who provided water for his people in the wilderness and still provides living water for you and me today. Also, Jesus promises to give his disciples and has given us the Holy Spirit who is himself the living water through whom we come to find life and enjoyment in the Triune God. Christ calls you away from your parched desert of idols to an oasis of life where your thirst will be quenched in him by the living water water of the Holy Spirit.