The Free Gift Of God
10 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 have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”
11 The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? 12 Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?”
13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again,14 but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” (John 4:10-14, NKJV)
4:10-14 The Free Gift Of God
Jesus answers her amazement with:
“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.” (John 4:10)
First question: What is the gift of God? It is the free salvation that is available to all who believe:
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, (Ephesians 2:8)
With that free salvation also comes the gift of the Holy Spirit coming to live inside of you when you are saved. You may remember in Acts 8 that the apostles were laying hands on people and they were receiving the Holy Spirit. A sorcerer named Simon said to them:
“Give me this power also, that anyone on whom I lay hands may receive the Holy Spirit.”
But Peter said to him, “Your money perish with you because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money! (Acts 8:19-20)
Paul also encouraged Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:
Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. (2 Timothy 1:6)
So the gift of God is free salvation for you and the Holy Spirit inside you. The woman at the well knew nothing of this. She also did not know that the man she was talking to was the one who was responsible for giving that gift.
If she had known these things, her response would have been, “You want water from me? I want living water from You!” What is this living water? The woman didn’t know. We’ll see clearly in chapter 7 when Jesus says:
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 the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; (John 7:38-39)
He differentiates the water in the well to the living water that is the Holy Spirit. You know what water is like. You’re thirsty, you step up to the drinking fountain, and ahh; it’s wonderful, it’s satisfying, it’s everything you hoped it would be; for about five minutes. Then you’ve got to go back; you’re thirsty again. People are so spiritually thirsty, and they drink from every fountain that they can find to see if any of them will satisfy their thirst.
They turn to drugs and alcohol. To sex and relationships. To money and possessions. To alternative lifestyles and eastern religions. But none of these things ever satisfy forever.
There is a proverb that says, “The eyes of man are never satisfied.” (Proverbs 27:20) Too much is never enough. Ask any millionaire how much money is enough, and he’ll tell you, “Just a little more.” There’s a thirst that only salvation can satisfy; an emptiness that only the Holy Spirit can fill.
4:15-18 Call Your Husband
She’s sold on the idea of living water. She doesn’t understand it, but she knows that t sounds good and that He can provide it. This would be a time that most of us would say, “Great! Just ask Jesus into your heart, and you’ll be saved!”
But we need to remember something. Right know this woman only has half the story. She’s only been provided with half the message of the gospel. She’s heard about the gift of God, about living water, but she hasn’t been convicted of her sin.
Repentance and sin aren’t popular to talk about in America. Many people present the gospel as “Jesus loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life.” But the beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ is “You have sinned.”
John the Baptist preached repentance. Jesus preached repentance. He told the disciples to preach that men should repent. Peter wrote:
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)
God wants all to come to repentance. So we need to be faithful to preach repentance. Every person is a sinner who needs a Savior. No one can be converted unless they are first convicted.
So Jesus cuts to the chase by addressing sin in her life. He tells her to bring her husband. Why? Because she’d already had five husbands, and she was now living with a man who was not her husband.
Jesus sees and knows everything. Nothing is hidden from Him. And despite all the bad things He knows about us, He still loves us!