The Well of Salvation

Submitted by Ben Armacost on Sun, 21 May 2017 - 06:08

You will receive your salvation with joy as you would draw water from a well (Isaiah 12.3 NCV).

What a beautiful verse, which reminds us of the refreshing nature of the transformed soul! And yet, there is something very personal about comparing salvation to water from a well that each of us should consider—something that speaks of our own identity.

Let’s rewind to Genesis 24, the story of the servant who travelled afar to find a bride for Isaac. The servant met Rebekah at the well where she was drawing water. When he shared the nature of his visit, Rebekah dropped her bucket and ran to share the news with her household. This narrative reminds us of another more familiar story: the Samaritan woman in John 4. Jesus met this notorious woman at the well and engaged in conversation, and before long we see her doing something similar to Rebekah. Dashing into Sychar, she excitedly shared the news that someone very special had come to their town. The result was that many people were spiritually transformed, just as that woman had been.

Wonderful things, it seems, happen at wells! Jesus sheds light on this to show us that it’s not physical water that makes the difference, but spiritual water. He said, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink” (John 7.37b). Indeed, Jesus is the spiritual well—the wonderful source of something exciting that stirs hearts and changes lives.

What is particularly intriguing is that being a source of living water is not unique to Him. No, it is a quality that He shares with all who believe! Look at what he said to this woman: “The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4.14b). And again later in John, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive… (John 7.37b-39a, ESV).

Now we can see not only a strong connection back to our verse in Isaiah, but to our own identity as children of the Kingdom.  Indeed, Jesus is a well of life—but if you belong to Jesus, YOU are a well also! You are a vessel of the Holy Spirit from whom thirsty people can drink.

Here is an excerpt from an amazing story that ran in the Washington Post last year:

The ragtag group of travelers had crisscrossed desolate sand dunes and labyrinthine badlands. They’d baked under the relentless sun, their tongues thick with thirst and desert dust. They’d slaughtered their oxen and abandoned their wagons and cursed the “short cut” that had led them there. And still they walked, their footfalls the only sound in the lifeless landscape.

“Every step I expected to sink down and die,” a weary woman later wrote.

When the settlers finally scaled the impenetrable wall of the Panamint Range, one was said to have looked back toward the canyon and proclaimed, “Goodbye, Death Valley.”

Then they trudged on toward California gold country, too preoccupied by the exhausting journey still ahead to devote much thought to the miracle of their survival.

Survival is a rarity in that part of the desert, a place characterized by hellish extremes. Death Valley is the lowest and driest spot in North America and the hottest in the world. Blockaded by ragged mountain ranges and carpeted only by bare earth and sand, the valley behaves like a gigantic convection oven. Superheated air wafts and whorls through the basin, scouring the landscape, daring life to defy it.

But life finds a way.

It’s a once-in-a-decade flowering known as a “super bloom,” and it’s happening right now.

And though the valley isn’t quite as forbidding as its name would imply — more than 1000 kinds of plants are found in the park. Their brief lifespan is a survival strategy; rather than battle the relentless heat year after year, the flowers’ seeds lie dormant underground. This keeps them safe from the blistering heat that bakes the desert during the summer, when temperatures can easily reach 120º F during the day and a balmy 90º F at night, and the withering drought.

What prompted this bloom? An autumn storm brought 0.7 inches to the valley in October.

The rainstorm washed the protective coatings off of the dormant seeds, allowing them to sprout. Then, the El Niño climate cycle that has chilled and drench parts of the West Coast bought more water to the parched landscape. The continued watering kept the nascent plants alive as they waited for spring to come.

One man said, “And then I suddenly realized there are so many seeds out there just waiting to sprout, waiting to grow. When you get the perfect conditions, the perfect storm so to speak, they can all sprout at once.”

(This article taken from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/02/24/how-death-valley-can-turn-into-a-valley-of-life/?utm_term=.5f48052d0265, 24 Feb 2016, accessed 13 Mar 2017)

If your well is overflowing, it’s not a plumbing malfunction! Let the waters of salvation flow from you as you share the good news with great joy.