I have been reading through the Gospel Record of the Apostle John in my personal time, and I came across a very familiar story. The story I read was the account of Jesus and the Samaritan woman. We are all very familiar with it. Christ comes into Sychar and sits on a well. As he is sitting a woman arrives and he begins a conversation with her. He shares with her the truth that he is the Messiah and that he has living water to give to her. By the end of the conversation we see her running to tell the others that she has found the Messiah and urging them to come and see him.
Yet when we arrive to what we would think is the end of the story, this is when the disciples show up. It is implied that they had gone to find some form of food for the group. When they arrive, they find a woman running off and a very ecstatic Jesus. They believe he needs food and make this comment to him, “Master, eat”. They are concerned for his well-being and, they are simply asking him to eat some of the food that they have brought back. His reply is, “I have meat to eat that ye know not of.”
I have read this story many times over. I have preached out of this passage on many occasions. I have focused on the need to go through Samaria, I have seen the wonderful life-giving water, yet I do not know that the Lord has held my attention as of yet with the words of Christ. As I read the words a particular thought entered into my mind. He says that he has meat that he as eaten, meat that has fulfilled his desires. Meat that would satisfy a hungry individual. Yet we know that he has not eaten one single bite. The meat that he has taken part in is given to us in the next verse, “My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.” He proclaims that the thing that satisfies or fulfills his hunger is to do the will of God. According to the context of the scripture the will of God was to make sure that the individual who was lost and spiritually separated from God, was made aware of the Gospel. As I read this and began to think a thought permeated my heart, are we as modern Christians starving ourselves by not fulfilling the great commission? Are we even hungry? Do we even desire to fulfill the will of God, that all come to repentance and that none perish? Can we for a minute just examine this passage of Scripture not as if we are dealing with a lost individual and their need for the Messiah and his life-giving water. Can we look at it from the point of a gracious savior that would desire to show his followers a deep and powerful truth? If we are to examine it from the sense that he has just fulfilled his hunger for lost souls.
I want us to first notice our Lord’s hunger. In verse four the Word of God says these words, “He must needs go through Samaria”. The words must needs describes a great need or a great desire on the part of our Savior. Here he is and he has an urging or a push that would make him go through Samaria. This describes perfectly the desires of a hungry individual. He has a particular craving and until that craving is fulfilled he will not be satisfied. I wonder as we end this week, do we have a craving for lost souls. The Bible says he that winneth souls is wise, yet we do not occupy ourselves with winning souls. I am afraid that in our modern day we are living without an actual hunger to see others come to Christ. We desire to see our church grow, our choirs grow, and even our church bank account grow but to desire an individual come to know Christ as savior? I was recently sitting with one of my children before dinner time, when she came to me and asked for a snack. My reply was I do not think you need a snack it will spoil your dinner. The reply was made, I will eat my dinner! Needless to say, when the meal was placed in front of the child, there was no hunger for the meal. Why did this take place? This took place because they had already filled themselves with something other than the designated meal. I am afraid that we as Christians are not hungry because we are consumed upon the lust of our flesh. These are not necessarily always bad things either, but things that have taken control of our lives. It may be a job, a hobby, a family member or even service in the ministry. If at any time an object or duty hinders your desire or ability to see others come to Christ, then that object or duty must be considered before God. Christ had a hunger for the meat of God’s will, I wonder if we are hungry or have we satisfied our hunger on the sweets of this world?
Secondly, I want us to see his hunt. I am so glad that there was a day when the Savior’s hunger for a lost soul placed him on a hunt for myself! When we arrive in verse six we find him sitting on the well. He has come I believe not for the town leaders, not for the religious leaders, and not even for the moral upstanding people of Sychar. Rather he has come, I believe, for this exact individual. He has come for this woman that in her words had many sins. You see his hunger caused him to hunt for lost souls. This caused him to get out of his comfort zone and go into a place that was not the norm for a Jewish man. Here he is in Samaria, a place hated by the Jews. He decides I will not wait for this individual to come to Jerusalem to see me but rather I will go to where she was. We love to speak about how he came to us, but we are so reluctant to take our time and go to them. We are comfortable with sitting in our churches waiting for them to come in, but they are out there needing an individual who is willing to leave the confines of the church and enter into the true mission field. Not only did his hunger drive him to leave his comfort, but his hunger drove him to hunt for one that did not fit the exact mold of a productive religious individual. Look at this individual and see who she is. First, she is a Samaritan, it would have been unaccepted for him to speak to a Samaritan. These were considered half breeds and those that would have been ethnically unclean. Secondly, she was a woman, this would have been considered a social faux pas, yet Christ finds her. Thirdly we find that according to her words and the Law she is a great sinner. Now explain to me in our modern churches, what place would she have found. As soon as she walked through the door, this unclean sinner would many times be looked down upon. I am mostly afraid that we are busy seeking those that can immediately fill some ideal office for us. An individual who can financially support the church. An individual who can physically support the church. An individual who can intellectually support the church. Yet what I find is Christ finding those that are social, economically, and physically marred in some way. Have we so quickly forgotten where we were when Christ saved us? His hunger caused him to hunt for an individual.
Thirdly I want us to see his harvest. As he is sitting there trying to explain to the disciples he says to them, “look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest”. I believe he says this as the city is coming to him. I hear so often, “preacher it is difficult to see people get saved, don’t you realize we are living in the last days”. I must confess, this drives me absolutely insane. I realize the principle that we are living in the last days, but has God’s word changed? Has his will changed? Has his power changed? Do you not agree and believe that if God were to give you a task that he would equip you with the tool and the ability to fulfill that task? Surely you do not think that it is to spiritually dark for even God to work. We often study the great I am’s of Christ, and the other day I was studying out his I will’s. I came across one that says this, “If I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me”. Can I share a promise with you today, he says that if he is lifted up from the earth that he will draw all men. This does not say that he will draw only men from particular generations but rather he uses the word all. Surely, we do not have to search into the original language to understand the meaning of all. I believe that God desires and equips us as Christians in these latter days to see people come to Christ. The average Christian and church are not seeing people get saved because we simply are not hungering and hunting for them. I am a believer in this truth, if we will do our part God will do his part!
Lastly, I want us to see his happiness. He says to his men that, “both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together”. Science tells us that when we eat particular meals that endorphins are released within our bodies. These particular endorphins cause a since of happiness. Yet may I express to you today that there is no greater joy for a Christian than seeing another lost soul come to Christ. Why all of heaven rejoices when one lost soul gets saved. I encourage you today, be an active soul winner. Do not allow the lust of this world deter you from letting others know about Christ. There is a great joy here on earth and in the days to come. I believe on that day when all our idle words and works for Christ will be put into the fire of God, there will either be great joy or great sorrow. Would you not desire to stand before your King with great joy as you present to him those great crowns?
I wonder today are you starving as a Christian? Not from biblical knowledge but from doing the will of the father. I would start the day by asking God to give you a burden and hunger for lost souls. Then individual who is not saved, would you take this story to heart. Would you recognize that he has the water of life? That you are eternally separated from God and without him there is no hope of reconciliation. Can I encourage you do not wait, for today is the day of salvation?