My beloved spiritual brothers and sisters in Our Risen Christ,
CHRIST IS RISEN! TRULY HE IS RISEN!
RECEIVING "LIVING WATER."
"…Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘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.’ But this He spoke CONCERNING OF THE
HOLY SPIRIT, WHOM THOSE BELIEVING IN HIM WOULD
RECEIVE…" (St. John 7:37-39).
"Living Water" is the gift of the Holy Spirit and the NEW LIFE which springs forth by the power of the Spirit. Our Savior gives the Holy Spirit, and the believer’s heart consequently flows with NEW LIFE. Our Savior does not compel us, but is always present if we desire Him. Our God and Redeemer Jesus Christ had another illustration of drinking ‘Living Water’ in his conversation with Photini, the Samaritan woman at the well in Sychar. "Jesus answered and said to her, "If you knew the Gift of God and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink, you would ask Him, and He would have given you LIVING WATER." (St. John 4:10). In the spiritual sense, it symbolizes TRUE LIFE from God, Who is the Fountain of Life.
Our Savior Jesus Christ proclaimed, "He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow RIVERS OF LIVING WATER" (St. John 7:38). Understanding the Old Testament requires some illumination (photisi). The Venerable Prophet Isaiah spoke, " You will draw water with gladness from the wells of salvation" (Isaiah 12:3), "For I will give water to the thirsty who walk in a waterless place. I will put My Spirit upon your seed and My blessings upon your children. They will spring up like grass in the midst of the water and like willows in THE FLOWING WATER. (Isaiah 4:3-4). "You who are thirsty, go to the water" (Isaiah 55:1). All speak of His people receiving the Living Water.
If the Living Water is the Holy Spirit (cf. St. John 7:38-39), then the Living Water flowing out of the hearts of His people represents the words and deeds of His Holy Spirit proceeding from Christ-centered activity. The term "Living Water" (Greek υδωρ ζων) means, water that is running as if alive. It was used synonymously for running water and the spiritual term that Jesus referred to as Living Water. Also in the 1st century document, The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles, the Church was given instructions, to baptize in "Living Water", if at all possible. "The Living and rushing water," (Song of Songs 4:15) is a phrase used by our Lord Christ (John 7:38) speaking of the work of the Holy Spirit in believers.
"Living Water" comes on the Person and operation of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is not a lesser God than the Father and the Son, but like the Son is consubstantial, of one essence, with the Father and the Son. Hieromartyr Irenaeus Bishop of Lyons says, that faith is a vessel by which water is scooped up, but one must be next to this water and must put the vessel into it. This water is the grace of God. Saint John of Kronstadt writes, " Faith is the key to the treasure-house of God." Communion with God is founded on true faith and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
No living thing, no matter if it is animal, plant, or human, can live without water. No Christian believer’s soul can live without "Living Water." As we understand it, "Living Water" is the Holy Spirit working in us and bestowing His grace upon us. The Holy Spirit is "The Giver of Life," Who cleanses us of our sins and saves our souls from eternal death. Should we not seek to quench our thirst by drinking of the Living Water which God offers to those who believe in Him? We all know that our society is a spiritual wasteland, a spiritual desert, a desolate place, and one cannot traverse it without God’s Living Water. To attempt to take the journey to the Kingdom of God spiritually unprepared is not only naive, but foolish, because it will surely bring our demize and destruction.
It is true that those who are spiritually alive not only have the desire or need to drink or have the sensation of being thirsty. When our body needs water we immediately act to quench our thirst. What happens when our soul thirsts for the Living Water? How quickly do we respond or act to quench that thirst? If we are spiritually dead, then we will never thirst for God’s Living Water. It is only when our souls are spiritually alive that thirst will be great and so will be our response to quench it. This is a kind of test which will indicate to us how true our faith is, how profound our commitment to the Merciful God is, and how healthy we are spiritually.
"Glory Be To GOD