On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink.”
(John 7:37 ESV)
They had just celebrated the Feast of the Tabernacles (Sukott). This is a ceremony each year when the Hebrew people gather in tents for a week to pray, visit, eat and drink. They even sleep in the tents. It is to remind them of their wilderness journey to the Promised Land with Moses. Many of the people in Jesus’ time would “tent” in Jerusalem. So?
So, at the end of this family and friends festival time of worship and communion together, the 7th Day is the Day of Atonement when they say prayers of forgiveness and ask for the Messiah to come. That is the great day. Now, Jesus pops up on this day and says, if you thirst (deeply desire) come to me. In other words, he is telling them He is the one they are praying to find. He is the Messiah, the one who will deliver them. As you know, a few believed but even more wanted to silence Him.
When do you need a Messiah? When do you pray for deliverance, and, from what? A bad attitude? A stressful situation? A habit you just can’t break? Jesus can come and quench your thirst for change. Don’t silence Him. Drink in His mercy. Like a spiritual power drink, He can revitalize your resolve, nourish your soul and even your mood, but in perfectly doled out measures without a false rush or crash later.
Maybe you are with family and friends at some festive event, but it still doesn’t feel right? You have something weighing on your soul which prevents the occasion from being truly fun for you. A past hurt, an unresolved conflict, or the desire to be closer to a person which remains unfulfilled can shadow the moment. Up pops your Lord. Go to Him and let Him deliver you. Drink in His grace and let Him fill you with peace and the type of love which never diminishes. Soon, it will overflow into the room and perhaps, quench someone else’s thirst as well.
Jesus is our Living Water from a well which will never run dry, but freely flows for all who come thirsty. Will you let Him deliver you and quench your deepest desires? Or will you seek worldly drinks (power, money, self confidence, feeling invulnerable, relying on human love to fulfill you) which never really quench your thirst? When Jesus pops up in a situation and says “Come to me, I am who you seek.”, what will you do? Will you believe, turn away or not even hear Him?