The Well of Jacob or The Spring of Life?
Scientists tell us that water is the nurturer of life. So when astronomers investigate if there is life on other planets, the search for a water source becomes an important indicator of the existence of life. Where there is a source of water, there is life. Jesus Christ used a water source as a metaphor of the life that He bestows on us. ¡§Whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life." (John 4:14)
The fourth chapter of the Gospel of John contains several important Truths. 1) Jesus Christ is the Spring of the Living Water, the source of the life of God. Referring to water from the Well of Jacob, Christ allegorized how the bountiful life of the Son of God is sufficient to satisfy the spiritual needs of generations upon generations of people. (In the New Testament, the words ¡§well¡¨ in verse 6 and ¡§spring¡¨ in verse 14 are the same word in Greek) Also, Christ wants especially to let us know that He is greater and more powerful than Jacob.
The Samaritan woman knew of and was proud of their common ancestor Jacob. She considered him to be very capable because he found a water source in the immense, semi-arid expanse of Palestine. Using simple digging techniques, he successfully dug quite a deep well. He, his sons and all their livestock depended on water from this well in order to survive. He also left this well to his descendents, all through to the time of Jesus. (From Jacob to Christ was a span of over 1,900 years) It is almost inconceivable that a well that was dug by hand lasted over 1,900 years and still remained, the well water continuously supplying uncountable people and livestock. For the people of Sychar in Samaria, generations of them were beholden to Jacob. No wonder the Samaritan woman felt proud because of Jacob, and was grateful to him for leaving the well so that they could survive by its water.
From a human perspective, Jacob was a competent, successful person. He was able to dig a well with a bountiful source that was adequate to supply water for thousands of years without drying up. It was indeed a work of the centuries. (It is said the Well of Jacob exists today) Yet, if we think deeper, Jacob had merely discovered the correct spot for the water source and patiently dug down. Eventually, God gave him a never-ending supply of water. Dear readers, if you have developed interest in the Bible and want to know more of God and Jesus Christ, this writer can tell you that you have found the right place. I hope you will continue to search patiently, dig deep just as you would dig a well, and God will let you find it. For Christ had made this promise: ¡§Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.¡¨ (Luke 11:9) Our Lord is the Spring of Life. He gives your soul abundant provision that lasts longer than the supply of Jacob¡¦s Well and even more, can relieve the thirst and desiccation of your soul.
Dear brothers and sisters: If you have been a believer for many years, have tasted the Lord¡¦s living water, and your soul has been well-watered by the Word of God, but now you have temporarily fallen into spiritual weariness and seem to have lost peace and joy, this writer will also say to you, perhaps your spiritual well has been obstructed by other things. Is it the lure of money, lusts of the senses and flesh, arrogance or worries of this life, or sins that you will not confront that have blocked your spiritual well? You must be resolute, pray and rely on God, submit to the light of the Holy Spirit, and remove these things one by one from the well of your soul. Then the living water of the life of God will gush non-stop from your heart, and peace and joy will flow without end. The writer also wants to remind you not to act like the Israelites of the past and forsake the Son of God, this spring of the living water, to dig their own cisterns - broken cisterns that cannot hold water (Jeremiah 2:13) - and replace God with the world.
¡§Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation. With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.¡¨ (Isaiah 12:2-3)
By Daniel To