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LIVING WATER AND THE GLORY OF GOD


On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’”

John 7:37-39

Our Lord was unambiguous in His insistence that He stood at the center of God’s redemptive plan. He not only shows us the way to a right relationship with God, He is the way (John 14:6). Theologians and diligent students of the Scriptures recognize that for Christ to accomplish His redemptive, reconciling work, He could not have been anything less than fully God. The New Testament is replete with passages that suggest His deity. In a few instances, the text comes right out and calls Him God (John 1:1-3, 14; 20:28; Romans 9:5; 1 Timothy 3:16; Titus 2:13). Much more powerful, I think, are those claims of deity made by the Lord Himself. Today’s passage is a good example. Christ’s invitation must be compared not only with the Old Testament record, but with Jewish thinking and expectation. When the Lord claimed He was the source of living water we immediately think of Jeremiah 2:13, where Jehovah refers to Himself as the fountain of living waters (also 17:13). John explains that Jesus stood up and gave this bold invitation in Jerusalem, presumably at the Temple, on the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles. This was the time when Solomon dedicated the Temple some 900 years earlier. At the dedication, the glory of the Lord was manifested in a unique and spectacular way (2 Chronicles 7:1-10). For this reason, many Jews expected the Lord’s glory to return to the Temple on that same day, the last great day of the feast. In the days of Christ’s earthly ministry, that is precisely what happened. On that day the Lord stood up and revealed Himself openly to His people. Elsewhere He is called “the image of the invisible God” (Colossians 1:15) and “the brightness of [God’s] glory, the express image of His person” (Hebrews 1:1-3). Paul reminds us that those who meditate on the Lord Jesus, God’s glory incarnate, are even now being transformed into the same image (2 Corinthians 3:17-18). Christ is not only the direction, He is the goal; to be like Him is both our blessed hope and our promised destination. Rest assured, dear saints, that even though we may not feel like it some days, even now God is accomplishing this great work in us (Philippians 1:6; Hebrews 13:20-21).

God bless you

Pastor John

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