Jacob’s Well was in the vicinity of Sychar, and had an elaborate stone-face wall encircling it. Many generations of shepherds, travelers and townspeople had frequented this famous landmark for its life-giving commodity. Innumerable herds of sheep, goats and camels drank from its life-giving spring generation after generation.
Jesus of Nazareth was traveling back to Galilee, but He had reason to go through Samaria. The Apostle John in chapter 4 of his gospel tells us that He was weary from His journey, and sat down by the well. When a local woman began to draw out water, Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” The woman reacted in a rather predictable manner as she stated, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” John tells us that Jews did not have dealings or conversations with Samaritans, especially women.
It is Jesus’ answer that still speaks to our hearts today: “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” That “gift” is still available to all who ask. Nothing has changed in over 2000 years. His gift of forgiveness of sins, redemption, reconciliation, and eternal life is what He offered to the Samaritan woman then, and He offers the same to each of us today: a thirst quenching drink for a lost parched soul.
“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 7:37-38.
The woman looked at Him, and looked deep within herself. She said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw.” You see, her bucket had holes in it. She couldn’t bear the thought of returning to that well over and over again without the hope of discovering something new. She was weary of the same old lies and disappointment. She was desperate for a real change in her life. She was sick and tired of dragging around a leaky old bucket.
Don’t we often do the same thing? We go down to the same old well when no one is watching. We venture out while the “heat” of disappointment and disillusionment is beating down on us. We avoid pain and confrontation. No one really understands our plight. We’re living a lie, and have gotten really good at covering up the truth. Things have to change one of these days, doesn’t it?
All the while, what we’re really looking for is something refreshing and thirst-quenching. Jesus is waiting there for us. He meets us at the Well of Life and offers us a fountain of Living Water, drawn from the depths of His Spirit.