The Promise – Part 3
“… anyone who is thirsty…” (John 7:37 NIV)
Jesus made a startling promise when he was here on earth. He invited anyone who was thirsty, who was unsatisfied in life, to come to him. The promise was that whoever believed in him would have rivers of living water flowing from within to satisfy that thirsting and emptiness in their innermost being. Pretty incredible, right?
It’s even more amazing when we consider the all-inclusiveness of this promise, for Jesus said that it applied to anyone who was thirsty— anyone then, and anyone today, in Brooklyn, in Europe, in Asia, in Latin America, in Africa, in your local church or mine! The qualification for receiving the promise is not “if anyone is white or black or Asian or Latino”; not “if anyone has lived a good life” or “if anyone is rich” or “if anyone is poor.” No, Jesus doesn’t say any of that. The only qualification is the following: Is anybody thirsty? Anybody not satisfied? Anybody feeling a lack of fulfillment? Anybody up at night wondering why you’re alive? Anybody afraid of death? If anybody is like that, “Come to me,” Jesus says. If you’re not thirsty, there’s no invitation for you; but if you have an emptiness within that only God can fill, then it's for you.
This invitation is definitely for everyone in the world who has a void in their life and doesn’t know about Jesus; but it can also apply to believers, who unfortunately, could get distracted by what they see around them and begin to not be satisfied with Jesus alone. As they lose that fellowship with the Lord, as they lose their trust in him and their closeness with him, they begin to try to gain satisfaction from all the things that the world is going after. Isn’t it lamentable that right now, in America, the lifestyles of many people who attend church are for the most part not any different from those of people who don’t go to church and who don’t even believe in God? They pursue the same things, watch the same things, run after the same things… As Christians drift away from the Lord, one of the signs is that they stop delighting themselves in God. He no longer is their joy; and instead, things become their joy. Money, fame, education, political causes—those can become the goal for Christians as well as people who don’t know Christ. When they achieve the goal, however, they’re just as empty as they were before.
The good news is that the promise Jesus made still holds true today. Someone may say, “But I don’t deserve it! After all, I used to serve the Lord, and I should have known better… No, but you don’t know what I’ve done in my life… But I’m so weak!” Jesus’ response is the same: “Anyone who’s thirsty—anyone—Come to me and drink! I will fill the emptiness, give you joy and peace, and provide that satisfaction that you need in your life.” Are you thirsty? If you are, then why don't you come to him today?
To be continued…
Read John 7:37-40.