Father, God, You are worthy today, and Father, worthy is the land that was slain for each one of us here today, Father, and it's only through trusting in what You did on the cross of Calvary and becoming our land for us, Father.
It's only in trusting that that we can come here and freely worship You and enter into a relationship with You. We get eternal life as a result of that, Father, but it's only through the sacrifice that You gave for us. And God, it's our prayer today that You be glorified, that You be high and lifted up here this morning. And Father, I don't know what kind of story every person's carrying today and I don't know what kind of baggage they have in their life today, but Father, I pray that today, if they've been battling or putting anything off in their relationship with You, God, I pray that today would be the day where they'd expose it all before You, knowing that You know everything about them, and yet You choose to love us anyway. Father, we can all leave here forgiven. We can leave here changed and forever in a relationship with You, God. We're grateful for it. We're here to worship You here today, for it's in Your name we pray, and all God's people said, Amen.
You can have a seat here this morning. Well, listen, it is good to see you in the house of God here today, and you guys look like y'all had an extra hour of sleep last night, and I tell you, I enjoy the extra hour, but I'm also like, why in the world do we do this whole Daylight Savings Time thing? Why can't we just stick with the same time?
How many of you are like that? Just stick with the same time all year? I don't really care which time we choose, but it's just like, hey, I don't have an opinion about that.
I'm just like, stick with it. Like, why do we have to do this? And so our international student who lived with us for several years from Hong Kong, you try to explain that to somebody who's grown up in Hong Kong. Like, they don't understand it. Or better yet, last night when we went to bed, my son, he's nine years old, he's plugging in all of his devices and stuff. You know, that's kind of what kids today have to do before they go to bed. Some of you turn on your CPAP machine, they actually plug in.
Sorry, I don't know why I said that, but I did. But for him, nine years old, he has this whole routine. He's putting all this stuff, you know, plug it in, and he just kept asking me over and over. He's like, so you're saying that these devices that are connected to Wi-Fi, like, they're going to change time automatically, like, tonight?
Like, and he just could, it blew his mind. Like, he didn't understand it, and I'm like, yes, just trust us. It's okay. And when you wake up in the morning, don't believe whatever the microwave tells you what time it is, okay?
But all the other things that are connected to Wi-Fi, you can believe those, and it's just wild. But listen, it is good to see you. I also want to welcome any guests. I know Pastor David did that.
Thank you for being here, and we're grateful for everybody who slips in, members and our guests, and we recognize there's people every single week who visit, and hopefully we'll get a chance to meet you, and we would love the opportunity to connect a little bit with you. But if you have your Bible, go to John chapter number four. John chapter number four here today, and we are actually in week number three of a series that we began several weeks ago entitled Altered.
Let's all say that word together. Altered, and the definition is actually in the sermon series graphic that we've been choosing. If you look this up, this isn't unique to us. It's just what the word altered means, to change or cause to change in composition or order. And the reason why we're looking at this is that when you meet Jesus, your life will be altered. For many of you, if you know Jesus today and you've trusted in Jesus as your Savior, your life is altered as a result of that.
It has been changed as a result of that. And so this series, it's a seven-week series that we are in through the Gospel of John at seven different encounters that Jesus had with different people. And by the way, every single encounter is a little bit different, and you're going to see that. We've already seen that in week number one with Nathaniel. He was skeptical, and he said, can anything good come out of Nazareth? And then last week, we looked at Nicodemus, who I would call the curious one. He's kind of curious, but he still was on this side.
He's kind of figuring this whole thing out. And then today, we're going to look at what I would call the outcast. And regardless of where you may be, and regardless of where people in your community, your neighborhood are, the good thing is that Jesus can meet every person wherever they are at. And any time they meet Jesus, their life is altered.
Their life has been changed. So John chapter four, if you have your Bible here today, I kind of put, you know, a lot of times I'll send an email about what we're teaching about this week. And I put that this is kind of a favorite pass, if you read my emails, I'm not going to ask you to raise your hand because some of you are going to feel so guilty. And you're like, man, I never read what the pastor has to say. It's fine.
And so my wife doesn't even know I send emails. And so, but here's what I'll tell you, John chapter four, I love this passage of Scripture. Because, because this is actually when I when I preach my first sermon back in 2002, this was actually the passage that I preach from. And so anytime that I come to John chapter four, I'm always reminded about the 11 minute sermon that I preach for the first time in my life.
And some of you are like, man, can you go back to the 11 minute kind of Josh and, and that kind of thing. And but I remember preaching that at the church that I grew up in, from this, this passage of Scripture. Also, what's interesting, just a fun fact about John chapter four, I believe that this is the longest conversation that Jesus had with one person at a time in Scripture, which is super important. And he comes face to face here in John chapter four. And he encounters this woman who had a lot of mess ups in her life.
She had a lot of baggage in her life. And I do want to say upfront, before we get into this, if that's where you are here today, you can meet Jesus right where you're at here today, and your life can be changed as a result of that. And so if you're coming in here, and you're like, man, nobody knows what I'm into. Nobody knows the struggles that I'm facing. Nobody knows the problems that I have been doing. Nobody knows the sins that I've committed even this week.
Nobody. Listen, you can be accepted and loved by Jesus here today, and your life can be altered as a result of encountering Kim here today. So John chapter four, and says this verse number one, when therefore, the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than john, though Jesus himself baptized not but his disciples, he left them because he heard about all that he left Judea, and he departed again into Galilee. But verse number four, very important verse, he must needs go through Samaria, then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar.
That's just Shechem. That was the capital city of Samaria, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son, Joseph. Now, Jacob's well was there, you can read about that in your own time, Genesis chapter 33, you'll see a little bit about why, where Jacob's well was was there Jesus therefore being wearied with his journey, he sat thus on the well, and is about the sixth hour very important.
This was noon, middle of the day. And here comes this woman verse number seven, there come at the woman of Samaria to draw water, Jesus saith unto her, give me to drink, for his disciples were gone away into the city to buy by me. It's just like anytime you put a bunch of guys together, it takes 12 of them to go buy the food that they need, apparently, and then verse number nine, then say it the woman of Samaria unto him, how is it that thou being a Jew, asketh drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria, for the Jews have no dealings with with the Samaritan. So very important before we continue reading, I want you to see this woman is a is a Samaritan. Now you say what was the what was the beef that they had with Jews?
And what was the issue there? Samaritans were descendants of the Jews that were from kind of the northern part of Israel. And what they had done is they had intermarried with with the Gentiles. So in other words, the Jews considered the Samaritans half breeds. And because of this, Jews thought of the Samaritans as less than or second class, they thought of the Samaritans is less than second class.
I mean, this is true, like racism at its finest. They believe the Jews believe that they were better than the Samaritans because they had intermarried with the Gentiles. The hatred between the Jews and the Samaritans was so grew or so real that they would not even a Jew would not even sit where a Samaritan had sat. And and in other words, what they were doing here on Jesus's journey, typically anytime that they had to get around Samaria, they would go all the way around the city and not go through the city of Samaria because they didn't want to deal with the Samaritans. And when they would go around it, that would be a multiple days extra journey just to get around Samaria. That's how big of a deal this was. That's how bad that they they hated them, they would go completely around it so that they avoided them. When I think about this, I always think it's like it's like when you're at like a grocery store or Walmart, you see somebody that you you don't want to talk to and you go kind of all the way down until, am I the only one who does that? Okay, nevermind.
Bad illustration. And but you kind of avoid them and you add on a lot of extra time to your journey just to avoid these people. Now, not only was she a Samaritan, which caused a lot of problems for Jesus to ever go through Samaria to begin with, but not only that, this woman had a reputation. She has a reputation. In fact, she shows up at the well in the middle of the day.
That's very important. It's about noon and this was not when the women would would go get water. They would usually do that typically early in the morning. And so she was by herself.
Typically, women would all go together. So the fact that this lady was by herself, she's an outcast, she has no friends, she has no relationships, she's been shamed by everyone around her to where now she's having to go at the middle of the day when nobody typically is at this well in the heat of the day. And that's when she finds herself at this well. Verse number 10, Jesus answered, said unto her, If thou knewest the gift, mark that word gift, if you mark in your Bible, the gift of God, and who it is that sayeth to thee, give me to drink, thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.
Now, this is very important. In fact, in Jeremiah chapter two, you can see kind of a prophetic moment here if you would, if you're into that, it's super important. Jeremiah chapter two, the prophet, he actually was talking about Jesus is to come, and he calls him something very important. He calls him the fountain of living water.
That's the first time we had heard about that. And now Jesus, who had come, and John chapter one, he came, he dwelt among the people. And now he's sitting there and he's telling this woman, if you knew, if only you knew the gift that God has for you, then you would have been asking me today for for living water. Verse number 11, the woman saith unto him, sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep, from whence then hast thou that living water?
She responds very similar. Last week we looked at Nicodemus from John chapter three. And if you remember Nicodemus, when Jesus kind of asked him a question and talked about being born again, Nicodemus's first response is, what do I have to do?
Right? And that's typically our response. Anytime somebody offers you something, you're kind of like, what do I have to do to get this? And so Nicodemus, he's like, okay, I got to be reborn. Like, okay, that's kind of weird. I got to, you know, go back to my mom and somehow crawl back into her, into her belly.
Like how is that going to work? And he completely missed the mark at first because he was looking like, what do I have to do? And here, very similar situation. Jesus, he tells this woman, like if you, if you knew everything that you need to know, then you'd be asking me today for living water. And she's like, wait a second. She's like, you don't even have a, have anything for me to fill the water that you have. You don't have a pot. You don't have nothing for me to give you what you're, what you're saying. She's missing the point.
And she's looking at what do I have to do to get whatever it is that you're saying. Verse number 12, art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well and drank thereof himself his children and his cattle. Jesus answered and said unto her, whosoever drinketh of this water shall, shall thirst again. But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst. But the water that I shall give him shall be in him, a well of water springing up into, into everlasting life. So Jesus is playing on the fact that the water that we're getting from the well, like you're going to be thirsty again, right? Like you're going to be back here tomorrow because the water that you're getting today cannot continue to sustain you. But if you come to me with the living water and you receive living water, you are never going to thirst again. In fact, verse number 14, I shall give him, or you shall never thirst. And then he says, you're going to be like a well of water springing up into everlasting life. In fact, it's going to overflow in your life. Verse 15, the woman saith unto him, sir, give me this water that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw. Jesus saith unto her, go, call thy husband and come hither. Now this is where it gets interesting. And this is where it probably for the woman would get a little uncomfortable, right? If you're this woman and you just were told by this, this man that you did not know, first of all, he's a Jew, you're a Samaritan, you're drawn water.
You never interact with anybody here, let alone a Jew. And so you normally go get your water and you head back into your own lifestyle and you don't have to think much about it. You don't have to be faced or be confronted with whatever it is you're dealing with. And so now you have this man, he's asking you, Hey, if you only knew the gift that God has for you, you'd be asking me for living water. And if you partake of that living water, you will never thirst again. It'll fully satisfy you forever. So obviously the woman's like, give me that. And by the way, if you're in here today and you've never tasted of the living water, how foolish would it be if you walked out this door and not partake of it? You should be begging, Hey, give me that.
That's what I need to satisfy me fully. And then Jesus says something. Jesus always, always, you know, he's the best communicator, the best teacher ever. And he says, why don't you go and call your husband and tell him to come hither. And the woman, knowing everything she's involved in, she says this verse 17, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, thou has well said, I have no husband for thou has had five husbands.
And he, whom thou now has that you're living with is not thy husband. Verse 19, the woman saith unto him, sir, I perceive that thou are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped in this mountain. And you say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. But Jesus saith unto her, woman, believe me, the hour cometh when you shall neither in this mountain nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the father you worship. You know, not what we know, what we worship for salvation of the Jews, but the hour cometh and now is when the true worshipper shall worship the father in spirit and in truth for the father seeketh such to worship him. Verse 24, God is a spirit and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. So the woman, she said in verse 25, I know that Messiah cometh, which is called Christ. When he has come, he will tell us all these things.
In other words, I mean, she's confused like most would be in this conversation. And if you remember for them during that day, they'd heard the stories, they'd heard these different things about, yes, the Messiah's coming and even though she was a Samaritan, she knew, you know, what the Torah, the first five books of the Old Testament, she knew those things. But in their day, the Messiah had not come.
It was something that was still future, something that they were looking to, something that they were, you know, they've heard about. And so she says, well, you know, I know Messiah is going to come at some point and he's going to tell us all these things. In other words, when he comes, he's going to explain all of this to me. When he gets here and when he shows up, then everything will make sense. And then Jesus looks at her.
This would have been such a fun moment to be just kind of a fly on the wall there. Jesus says unto her, verse 26, I that speak unto thee am he. I am he. In other words, the Messiah that you say that you know is going to come. He's going to explain everything to you. He's going to tell you all these things. You're talking to him today. Verse 27, and upon this came his disciples.
They marveled that he talked with the woman. Like, what are you doing, Jesus? You're talking to a Samaritan and she's here in the middle of the day. That must mean something. She has no friends.
That must mean something. She's an outcast. She has a lot of baggage in her life.
There has to be a reason why she is here in the middle of the day by herself. And they're like, why in the world is Jesus talking? Yet no man said what seekest thou or why talkest thou with her? They just marveled in their heart. In other words, verse 28, the woman, after she heard this, here's what happened to her. She left her water pot and went away to the city. And she sayeth to the men, come and see a man which told me all things that ever I did is not this, the Christ.
Then they went out of the city and came unto him. Here we have this awesome interaction and this altercation and encounter with Jesus and this Samaritan woman. And this woman, like I said earlier, she was a Samaritan, which was enemies of the Jews. But not only that, she had a bad reputation.
In fact, you can kind of see that by the story. She had no name. She was by herself. She had a terrible reputation. Nobody would travel to that well with her because of the issues that she had in her life. And so Jesus here offers her living water.
And if she partakes of the living water, it could completely change her life. This woman had been married five times. And the man that she was living with now, her six, was not even she wasn't even married to him. In other words, she had been looking for something and all these different relationships. And now she's on a sixth relationship.
And she is looking for something to satisfy the need that she has in her life. And the miraculous thing about Jesus' message to her is that he did not come to shame her. He came to save her. He did not come to condemn her.
He came to change her. And so the biggest idea that I can tell you from this story, and here's what I want you to understand. And listen, if you've kind of slipped in here and you don't know Jesus as your savior, you've never partaken of living water, and maybe you've slipped into this room here today and you've never been, what we learned about last week, born again, that for you today, living water is the only thing that can eternally satisfy your soul. Living water is the only thing that can eternally satisfy your soul.
It's nothing else here in life. And so I want to show you a couple things from this story about living water. The first thing that I want you to notice from the story and from the text is this. The priority of the living water. The priority of the living water.
You see this played out in a couple different ways. Verse number four. Jesus, he must needs go through Samaria.
It's very important. He must needs go through Samaria. Let me just say this, that you're not here by accident. That you've not slipped into this room just kind of by accident.
I believe you're here by divine appointment. But what you need to understand is that Samaria represented, the city of Samaria, it represented the difficult road that Jesus took to get to you. That's what Samaria represents here. Because remember what I said earlier is that for the Jews, anytime, whether they were going north or whether they were going south, Samaria was right there in the middle. And what they would do is they would go around it completely, taking a lot of extra time, kind of going into a place where they didn't want to interact, and all this kind of stuff.
It was a place that they avoided. It was a difficult task. And let me tell you this Samaria, it represents how far Jesus was willing to go to reach this woman at the well. And Samaria for you represents how far Jesus has gone to reach you. Let me tell you this, that the road that Jesus took to get to you was not an easy road. It was not an easy road. In fact, the scripture says that for him, even though he was fully human, and fully God, all at the same time, which kind of blows my mind and it'll give you a headache if you think really long and hard about that. But here's what it says is that Jesus before going to the cross to purchase your life, and to rescue you for forever and give you a way of escape so that you can eternally live with him, is that Jesus, like he sweated drops of blood.
You see, this was not an easy road. Crucifixion, what he did was he hung up on a cross and died for you. You see, the point is, is that Samaria is a reminder of just how far Jesus was willing to go to purchase you.
You know, you need to keep that in the forefront of your mind. Jesus, he gave his very life so that you could live again. You see, that's a reminder for that second thing about the priority of living water is this. Living water is a free gift offered to everyone. It's a free gift offered to everyone. During that day, it was wild for Jesus to be offering this gift to anybody that was not a Jew, right? Because of the Old Testament law. And so for Jesus to actually be offering the reason why he came to somebody who is not fully Jewish, who had married a Gentile, this was like, this was crazy. And for Jesus, this was him showing to his disciples and to everybody that salvation, Jesus has come not just for the Jew, but also to the Greek, for all of us. And by the way, you should be grateful for that. Because if it wasn't for that, then you couldn't be saved because to be saved, you had to become Jewish.
And Jesus came so that you could be forever, forever saved. You see, it's a gift. In verse number 10, he says, if you knew, he tells the woman, if you knew the gift of God, then you'd be asking me for living water today.
You see, living water, it's a free gift that's offered to everybody. Think about gifts. You know, we're entering in this, I know Pastor David mentioned Christmas and stuff.
And so we're getting ready. Many of you are starting to think through like Christmas gifts, you know, you're a couple months away. And how many of you are last minute shoppers? Just kind of the week of kind of people. I'm with you on that. It's kind of like, it's December 23rd, better start buying stuff for my wife.
And I'm just joking. I never do that. And so, but like, I'm always a last minute kind of thing. But I think about our kids and we think about gifts early. And for our kids throughout the year, you know, I don't know if you're like us, but sometimes you promise things to your kids that you tell them or you warn them that if they do something, that they're not going to get a Christmas gift.
Now, don't look at me like I'm a terrible parent because I know you've done it. When you're kind of in the heat of the moment, your kids aren't obeying. They're not listening.
They're not doing anything. And you're telling them to stop and they're not responding. You finally have to go to the extreme.
Okay. And so I just jump all the way there. I don't even deal with the formality. I just go from point A all the way to the extreme. And I'm just like, hey, you do that again. You're not getting any Christmas gifts.
And then they finally obey. Do I really mean that? Lindley, shut your ears for a second. I don't.
Okay. I don't because here's the thing we all know as parents. Christmas Day comes around. It doesn't matter if your kid lived on the naughty list all three hundred and sixty five days of the year. You know good and well on Christmas morning.
Guess what? They're getting a gift. Sometimes I look at them on Christmas morning.
They're like, oh, man, this is so great. And I'm thinking you do not deserve that. But you see, like the gift, a gift at Christmas time, it is something that that you give to somebody regardless. Right. It's a free gift that that they did not have to do anything to to earn. You're just giving it to them because you're a dad or a mom who wants to give good gifts to their to their kids. You see, that's what Jesus was offering this woman, this Samaritan woman there at the well. He says, listen, if you knew the gift that that God is offering you, you do absolutely nothing to get the gift. It's a free gift regardless of how you've lived, regardless of the fact that you've been married five times and now you're living in adultery and and all these wild things like you'd be the last person to ever deserve the gift that is freely offered to you. But Jesus is saying this is a gift that I am offering you. Romans six twenty three talks about that for the wages of sin is death. But the gift of God is eternal life. You see, it's a gift.
It comes to us when we don't deserve it. How about Ephesians two, eight, nine? For by grace are you saved through faith, not of yourselves.
Why? It's the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast. Here's what you have to understand about living water, living water for salvation. It's not a wage that you work for. It's not something that you work to achieve. Living water is a gift that you receive.
That's the point. That's what Jesus is offering. Living water, it's not a wage that you work for.
It's a gift that you receive. That's the priority of living water. The second thing I want you to see is the power of the living water. You see here in verses nine through fourteen, you kind of see this interaction with Jesus about living water and and he's trying to talk to her that everything you're looking for is only a temporary fix. And so the point is that living water can satisfy you forever. You see, living water can satisfy us forever.
Think about it. We play, I say we, I don't really show up very often, but we have a basketball thing that happens this afternoon a lot of times and these guys get together, they play basketball. I have been a few times and here's what I've learned very quickly is that once I go out there, I run up and down the court just a time or two, I'm going to need a water break, right? Because I should be able to run more than I do without needing a water break, but it doesn't take long for me to need a water break.
And here's what I know. Once I get that water and once I stop the game and I go get my water or whatever, I go over there, I drink a ton of water. Guess what's going to happen when I go right back onto the court one or two times up and down the court, you know what I'm going to need again?
Water, right? You ever, you know what I'm talking about? Don't look at me like you're crazy, like I'm crazy. You're the same way. If I asked you to run to that back door, some of you couldn't do it because you need water, right?
And so we, we, I'm the same way. It's like we need water because, because you know, you constantly need it to satisfy you and so you need it now and then you're going to need it again. And that's what Jesus was telling her is that the water that you think I'm talking about that's coming from this well, no, yeah, you're going to be here tomorrow and you're going to need more of that because that temporarily satisfies you.
In fact, the, the relationships, you know, husband number one, temporarily satisfied her relationship. Number two temporarily satisfied her all the way down to three to four to five and then now she's on her sixth and what's happening is, is she's looking and all these different places for satisfaction and Jesus is saying that if you take of the living water that I'm offering you, you will never thirst again. In other words, that everything we're looking to in life to try to satisfy us, all those different things, like they can never eternally satisfy you. If you're looking for satisfaction and a relationship or a job or your career or a friend or, or a salary increase or a hobby or, or any of those things, like there's nothing wrong with any of those things.
Those things are good things, but if you're looking for safety and security and satisfaction and all of those things, then what's going to happen is they're always going to fall short of fully satisfying you. And so what Jesus is saying is that living water is what satisfies you forever. It satisfies you eternally. All these other things, temporary fixes, but living water will never run out. Not only that, living water can change your life. You see this woman worshiped relationships, she worshiped men, she worshiped sex, and here Jesus is offering her something that now she can stop worshiping these things and she can start worshiping him. It changed what she worshiped. It changed her behaviors.
It changed her heart. You see, that's the power of, of living water. You see, Jesus is saying that once you trust in the living water, which is in your heart, that what happens is all the exterior things of life, they now change. You see, salvation is not an outside in life and that's where the church gets it wrong a lot of times. Listen, a lot of you have had bad experiences because you showed up at church one time in your life and they told you you need to fix everything and then you can come into a relationship with God. And Jesus completely flips that.
His message is totally different. He says, hey, I want you to come to me with all the husbands that you've had and all the adultery that you've committed and all the brokenness that you've done and all the sin that you're in and all the messed up wicked things that your life has ever done. And what I'm going to do is once you partake of living water, it's going to fully change inside of your heart. And what's going to happen is once your heart is changed, everything on the outside ends up changing, not in order for you to be saved, but because you're saved. You see, that's the message of the gospel and that's what he is offering her.
That's the power of the living water. For some of you, you've come and you're like, man, I need to fix this. I need to stop talking about this. I need to stop doing this.
I need to stop hanging out with them. Listen, I'll just tell you this, you're going to work yourself to death and end up disappointed every time. But if you come to Jesus and you say, here's my mess, here's my brokenness, here's my sin. God, I can't do anything on my own. Change my heart. Once he changes your heart, you're going to be blown away with how the exterior begins to change.
You see, it's not about behavior modification. It's all about change in the heart. It's about being transformed inside of you.
The third thing we see is the result. Result of the living water. Result of the living water. What did the woman do? After she realized he was the Messiah, she realized that this is Jesus. She realized that she's going to partake of living water and her life's going to be forever satisfied. What's interesting is she left her water pot. The very reason why she showed up at the well with the water pot, she now leaves it.
Like, ma'am, come back, get your water pot. The reason is she left that behind because she had received living water and what Jesus said is once you receive living water, you're like this fountain that is overflowing out of you. That's what happens to her and now she goes to all these men, many of them that she's committed sin against and sin with, and she goes to all of them and she begins to tell them, and this is where it gets real raw and this is where the church kind of gets a little uneasy with it.
She begins to tell them that I just met the Messiah, Jesus, who knows everything about me and loves me anyway. That's the message of the whole story and I want you to think about it. In her day, and I want you to get this, and I don't want to downplay the sin that's being committed. Adultery is a sin. The scripture is clear about that. The fact that she was living with somebody that was not her husband would be against God's law. It's against scripture and so I don't want to downplay what had happened there and so I don't want you to think, well, hey, it doesn't matter how I live.
It does matter. I mean, we've got to live out what he has told us to live, but here's what's interesting about this story. Adultery in that culture, you know what happens to them? If you find something, you know the story, remember when the men found somebody in adultery, in the very act, what did they do?
Brought them right in front of the middle of the city, on the streets, and they wanted to stone this person. So what Jesus knew about this woman, blows my mind, what Jesus knew about this woman could have had her killed. Those were the things that she would have wanted to keep completely away from this conversation. This was something that could have had her killed and Jesus could have easily come and made this known to the point where she could have lost her life because of the sin that she was in. It was not just embarrassing for her, this was threatening for her. For him to accuse her and to know the fact that she'd been with all these men and that she's living with somebody that's not her husband, this would have been very threatening with her, something to the point where she would put up guard rails around her and boundaries so that nobody can really come on this side of the boundary because I'm keeping some things hidden that I don't want anybody to know. And isn't that how all of us act? I'm not saying that you are in the middle of adultery, but what we do is the things that we hate the most about us and the things that we are most guilty of in our life, a lot of times what we do is we put those things kind of in a box around us and we put boundaries around it and we don't want anybody to know the deepest, darkest secrets of our life. Think about it. If we went around the room and said you have to tell the worst thing possible about your life, I guarantee you some of you would hold things back.
Why? Because we think that our sin ultimately results in shame. You see, to be completely exposed is a scary thing for us to be, right?
And that's what this lady felt. There was nothing hidden in front of Jesus. There was no boundaries, there was no lying, there was nothing. Everything, the worst thing that she had ever done, Jesus knew. And by the way, the worst thing that you have done that your parents have no idea that you've committed and your spouse doesn't know and nobody else knows the very worst thing about your life that you keep hidden from everything else, let me tell you this, Jesus knows it.
Jesus knows it. Now I don't say that to scare you. I say that for you to rejoice Him because think about this, how would you feel if you were completely exposed? If you were completely exposed. If we threw you in front of this church and told every single person in this place every bad thought you've ever committed or ever thought, every bad deed you've ever done, we would be terrified, right? I'm sure if I said next Sunday, we're going to do that to every single one of you, our attendance would, nobody would be here. I wouldn't be here. Right? And like, we would be completely scared of that.
Why? It's because we automatically associate sin with shame. But this lady stands there completely exposed, Jesus knows everything about her.
And you know what she feels? Safety. Safety.
You say, why is that? Because Jesus did not come, and don't miss this, this is the point of today, Jesus did not come to shame her. He came to save her. And let me tell you this, when you confess your sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive you of your sins. And let me remind you, if He is just, He cannot make you pay for the same sin that Jesus Christ has already paid for.
You see, the sin that you've already committed is already under the blood and here He exposed everything about her life in order to save her. You see, that's what salvation is. We all desire in our heart to be fully known and fully loved all at the same time. To be fully known that everything about your life, every bad thought, every bad thing, everything you've looked at that's bad, everything that you've ever said behind anybody's back, all the sin, the attitude, everything that you think, what we desire is for us to be fully known and fully loved.
That's in us. We want that and the only place that you can find it is in the person of Jesus. You see, the amazing thing about Jesus, He didn't come into the world to condemn the world. He didn't come in the world to shame the world.
He came into the world to save the world. And by the way, let me say this to the church, I don't want this to go unknown. The last thing the church should feel like is an exclusive group of religious judgmental people that huddle together and condemn every person that walks through these doors. It's the last thing our church needs to be. You see, the church is not supposed to be this thing where everybody comes in, wow, look at how they're dressed. They must be into a bunch of junk.
Right? Or look at who they are, they have a reputation. You know something, a lot of church people, in today's modern church at least, I've been a part of a church my whole life, they wouldn't have been welcomed in Jesus' presence. They'd have been called a Pharisee. That's exactly, and I think churches are full of them. You see, church should not be a place where everybody walks in with issues and being broken and the church sits off in their holy huddle and they just talk bad and condemn the people around them. You know what the church should feel like? It should feel like just this ongoing doors wide open hospital where, hey listen, there's another sinner just like the rest of us, let's welcome them into our family and listen, hey, look, I know you got a lot of junk in your life, I know you're broken, I know you're sinful, I know you don't do everything right, hey listen, it's okay, we were all once just like you and all I want you to know is that Jesus loves you enough and he loves you just the way you are and he wants to offer you living water so that you can be born again and here's the best thing, he loves you so much in the middle of your junk, in the middle of your brokenness, in the middle of your mess, he loves you so much that he doesn't even want you to stay that way. So he's going to offer you a gift, the gift of salvation and once you stop trusting and looking for satisfaction and everywhere else and start looking to him for that, then he's going to love you so much that he's going to gift you the Holy Spirit into your life and it's through the Holy Spirit that your life's going to change and you're not even going to even want some of those things anymore. You see, that's the message of the gospel and that's what our church should be. So I ask you this in closing, have you tasted the living water? Have you tasted the living water?
You see, living water is the only thing that can satisfy your soul. Let me just say this church, stop looking for security and safety and happiness and people because guess what, they're going to let you down. Some of you are looking for happiness in a church and you've stumbled into our church and you're still carrying some things about a previous church experience and here's what I'm going to tell you, I'm just going to be honest with you, it won't be long before our church lets you down.
You want to know why? Because we're a bunch of sinners, just like you are, until we are. But let me tell you this, once you're looking for happiness in a person, in Jesus, in the living water, then it doesn't matter what happens around you, you can be happy. Because it's not in your circumstances, it's not in people, it's not in money, it's not in career, it's not in a promotion, it's not in what people think about you, it's not being invited to everything, it's not in any of those things. Here's where it is, happiness when it's found in Jesus, all those things could fall apart and you can still be happy because it's in Him.
And that's the point, and that's what she learned. It's not in the relationship she's had, it's not in this adulterous relationship she's currently in, she learned that day when she encountered Jesus, that her life could be altered if she but partake of the living water that is being offered to her as a gift. And you can partake as well today, would you bow your heads with me? Would you please stand, heads bowed, hearts lifted in prayer? I want you to think about this here today, like this thought is so good, like this lady was fully exposed and yet she was fully loved all at the same time.
Think about that, think about that. And for some of you here today, I know I'm preaching to the choir, many of you are saved and maybe perhaps all of you are Christians and you've trusted in Jesus as your Savior, but let me just tell you this, it's like if you're in here today and you've never trusted in Him and you're trying to find happiness and security and all these other things, stop fighting that and start trusting in the only thing that can satisfy you eternally. All those other things are nothing but a sip of water to you.
You're gonna need it in an hour, you're gonna need something else in a few hours and need something else tomorrow. Jesus is the only thing that can satisfy yourself forever. And so I tell you this today, if you're in here today and you're like, man I am looking in all the wrong places for satisfaction, then come today and you can be eternally satisfied. But for some of you, here's the biggest thing, what I've been in all week while I've studied this, how in the world can a good God, a perfect God, love such a wicked sinful sinner like myself?
That's the thought that I can't get over. Like as I read this story, I'm thinking man what a shame that I've been a judgmental Christian for most of my life and here, Jesus, he offered me the free gift of salvation and here I am like a broken sinful person that has a lot of baggage in my life. I'm thinking, but I came to him one day when I was five years old with all my junk and Jesus saved me and loved me just the way I am. For some of us, we need to today thank God, maybe come to an altar and say, God I don't know why you love a sinful person like myself, but I'm so thankful that I could come just as I am broken and you can mend and put me back together. I want to pray for us and then if God speaks to you, you come, maybe you need to come and say thank you. Father, you're so good to us and God we are so undeserving and Lord you have gifted us eternal life through your son Jesus Christ and all we have to do is accept and receive the free gift and come to you just as we are. This lady came just as she was and you loved her anyway. God, what an incredible thing that is. Thank you for loving us, for it's in your name.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-20 15:25:19 / 2023-11-20 15:44:11 / 19