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2 Corinthians 1:3 We comfort others with the same comfort God gives to us.

THIRSTING FOR GOD

St Lukes Methodist Church : 3 March 2013

By Sandile Swana

Title:  Thirsting for God.

 

 

1.       Root Scripture:

Isaiah 55:1

New International Version (NIV)

Invitation to the Thirsty

55 “Come, all you who are thirsty,
come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without cost.

 

John 7:37-39

New Living Translation (NLT)

Jesus Promises Living Water

37 On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! 38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’”[a] 39 (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given,[b] because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.)

 

2.       Introduction

2.1.             God our creator and saviour invites all human beings who are thirsty for God to come to Him.

2.2.             Jesus also made it clear that those who are thirsty must come to him and drink.

 

John 4:6-15

New International Version – UK (NIVUK)

6 Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about noon.

7 When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, ‘Will you give me a drink?’ 8 (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)

9 The Samaritan woman said to him, ‘You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?’ (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.[a])

10 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.’

11 ‘Sir,’ the woman said, ‘you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his livestock?’

13 Jesus answered, ‘Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.

15 The woman said to him, ‘Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.’

2.3.             The first drink that this woman got was the word of God which she believed, it is this living word in you that produces a new life and eternal life- any work of God in human being start with the Word of God and a believing heart.

2.4.             Jesus also identifies the water that will not just quench the thirst temporarily but in fact will be a spring with overflowing water and this is the indwelling Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit who stays inside the believer.

John 7:37-39

New Living Translation (NLT)

Jesus Promises Living Water

37 On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! 38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’”[a] 39 (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given,[b] because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.)

We must accept that the Word of God does transform all people into obedient children of God, this woman had had five husbands and was living with a man who was in fact somebody else’s husband, thinking she will get satisfaction from that but Jesus says if you knew the gift God you would have asked. Satisfaction comes from a life in the Word of God and the Spirit of God not from any scheme a human being can make.

3.       The Thirst

The scripture starts off with thirst:

Isaiah 55:1

New International Version (NIV)

Invitation to the Thirsty

55 “Come, all you who are thirsty,

come to the waters;

and you who have no money,

come, buy and eat!

Come, buy wine and milk

without money and without cost.

 

The definition of thirst.

thirst·y (thûrst)

adj. thirst·i·er, thirst·i·est

1. Desiring to drink.

2. Arid; parched: thirsty fields.

3. Craving something: thirsty for news.

4. Very absorbent: a thirsty sponge.

 

  • In the book of Isaiah God calls those who are thirsty and Jesus called those who are thirsty several times during His time.
  • God has created every human being to be thirsty when there is no water in the body.
  • Any doctor will tell you that you that you cannot last long without water. Some studies say a human being cannot last 3 days without water but generally can survive 3 weeks without food and will die after forty days without food even if he/she is drinking water.

So the presence of the Holy Spirit and the living word of God both quench thirst and in fact both are totally and absolutely necessary for you and I to live eternal life. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth and the Truth is the Word of God, the Word and the Spirit must always be together.

When you do not have water you die of dehydration; so anybody who does not have the word of God and the Holy Spirit living in her or him is in fact very thirsty and generally this is the unbeliever who must still be saved or a back-sliden Christian who has grown cold towards God.

The person who has no word and no Holy Spirit is in fact a desert , the person is the equivalent of a parched or arid peace of ground, but in reality God wants you to be a sponge of the Word of God and the Holy Spirit.

You can never get an overdose of Scripture and the Spirit of God, the bible encourages you to be drunk with the Holy Spirit.

However the scripture also encourages a Christian to thirst after God, a child of God must hunger for God we must desire to live with God permanently during our earthly life day and night.

Psalm 63:1

King James Version (KJV)

63 O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;

The psalmist says early will I seek thee even my flesh, my body realises that I need you. Meaning that the first thing I will do daily Lord is to seek you; every morning I will first greet you and look at you Lord because all my surroundings are ungodly and totally unspiritual, I live in a spiritual desert and I have to go after you.

Sometimes the life of a child of God is like a spiritual desert, you feel God is far; there is no joy of the Lord in your heart and there is no peace and perhaps you long for the demonstration of the power of God in your life. Again the Psalmist speaks:

Psalm 143:6

King James Version (KJV)

6 I stretch forth my hands unto thee: my soul thirsteth after thee, as a thirsty land. Selah.

 

It is during such times that you need to greedily read the scriptures; it is during this time that you must seek fellowship with believers; it is during this time that you must sing worship and praise songs even on your own; and indeed it is during this time that you must be this deer that chases after the Lord and indeed one method of spiritual revival is to participate in outreach and mission work.

 

4.       The thirst quencher is for free and is oversupplied.

Isaiah 55:1-2

Amplified Bible (AMP)

55 Wait and listen, everyone who is thirsty! Come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Yes, come, buy [priceless, spiritual] wine and milk without money and without price [simply for the self-surrender that accepts the blessing].

2 Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your earnings for what does not satisfy? Hearken diligently to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness [the profuseness of spiritual joy].

  • God and Jesus both announce that everyone who is thirsty must come for a drink, no matter your religious status; no matter your economic status; no matter where you come from and no matter how great or small you are come and drink this spiritual drink.
  • God emphasises that those who have no money must come and get free salvation; free mercy; free grace and all of the overflowing blessings of God.
  • These waters which is the Word of God and Holy Spirit and the free gift of faith and the free gift of grace have no price that any human being can pay, it only required acceptance. No man can boast about what he has received from God.
  • The key matter again is that human beings can labour and buy bread which cannot sustain them- some of us buy expensive clothes; we get many girlfriends; mistresses; toyboys; and attend many sports events and concerts; some of us start riding high speedboats, but remember that there is nothing that is manmade or even created by God that can fill the void  created by the absence of God- you need God, you need the Word of God and Holy Spirit to transform and stabilise your mind.
  • Jesus made it clear at the well of Samaria, that even water which is created by God cannot satisfy the spiritual thirst to know God; to be found in Him and to live right now and forever in Him and with Him. There is nothing other than God himself that can satisfy a human being.

Paul cried out making the same point:

Philippians 3:8-10

New Living Translation (NLT)

8 Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ 9 and become one with him. I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ.[a] For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith. 10 I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death,

  • Indeed there is no man who can ever be satisfied with any of the pleasures and joys of this world, many of us are now addicts because any created thing other than God cannot generate joy and peace from inside.
  • It is only the Holy Spirit living on the inside of you and bubbling up and welling up into a flowing river can generate spiritual joy and peace even in the midst of a storm even joy in the midst of turbulence.
  • Yes it is the Word of God and Holy Spirit that produce a miracle life and a powerful life right here on earth.

5.       Wine and milk

Isaiah 55:1-2

New Living Translation (NLT)

Invitation to the Lord’s Salvation

55 “Is anyone thirsty?

Come and drink—

even if you have no money!

Come, take your choice of wine or milk—

it’s all free!

2 Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength?

Why pay for food that does you no good?

Listen to me, and you will eat what is good.

You will enjoy the finest food.

 

  • God highlights another aspect which is that He is giving free wine and milk to quench our thirst.
  • Wine represents exhilaration and joy, a fruit of the Spirit and in fact a spiritual force  of the Holy Spirit that works in you as a believer. Paul again clarifies this point:

Romans 14:17

New Living Translation (NLT)

17 For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

5.1.             God also dishes out free milk, milk makes you strong and it makes you grow, this milk again is the Word of God which is able to build you up.

1 Peter 2:2

New International Version (NIV)

2 Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation,

In the Amplified:

1 Peter 2:1-3

Amplified Bible (AMP)

1 So be done with every trace of wickedness (depravity, malignity) and all deceit and insincerity (pretense, hypocrisy) and grudges (envy, jealousy) and slander and evil speaking of every kind.

2 Like newborn babies you should crave (thirst for, earnestly desire) the pure (unadulterated) spiritual milk, that by it you may be nurtured and grow unto [completed] salvation,

3 Since you have [already] tasted the goodness and kindness of the Lord.

5.2.             To thirst for something is to crave for it and to long for it, we must be thirsty to  live with God and do things his way.

Matthew 5:6

New International Version (NIV)

6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,

for they will be filled.

God makes it clear that when you are thirsty and hungry to live a godly life you will certainly be filled. The apostle Paul put it like this:

Philippians 2:13

New Living Translation (NLT)

13 For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.

Philippians 2:13

King James Version (KJV)

13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

In fact God emphasised that the key to a good life on this earth is to first obey Him and live His way- God’s way is not the best way it is the only way.

Matthew 6:31-33

New International Version – UK (NIVUK)

31 So do not worry, saying, “What shall we eat?” or “What shall we drink?” or “What shall we wear?” 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

 

6.       Conclusion

Psalm 63:1-8

New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 63[

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About the Author

rehobothSandile Swana is member of St Lukes Methodist Church, Wilropark, Roodepoort, Gauteng and travels from city to city across Africa teaching people of all cultures and all church denominations obedience to Jesus Christ and the royal commandment of love. This ministry has a focus on ensuring that all obstacles to a fruitful Christian lifestyle are removed in the life of each individual as envisaged in John 15. Some have seen sickness; sin; poverty; chaotic family life and general lack of clear vision rob them of this fruitfulness in life, these are all removed by obedience to Jesus Christ. Sandile extends hands of friendship to both Catholic; Protestant and the independent churches in proclaiming the risen Christ to all nations through comprehensive teaching and training in the word of God.View all posts by rehoboth →

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Genesis 26:22 New Living Translation (NLT) 22 Abandoning that one, Isaac moved on and dug another well. This time there was no dispute over it, so Isaac named the place Rehoboth (which means “open space”), for he said, “At last the Lord has created enough space for us to prosper in this land.”