Sunday, June 20, 2021
Rivers of Living Water
He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart shall flow rivers of living water.
- John 7:38
Rivers have characteristics that distinguish them from every other body of
water. One of the most notable is that they have banks. Banks provide
boundaries for the river, enabling it to flow in a certain direction. A river
can be a powerful force for good, including providing water, transportation,
or water power to do work. But a river without boundaries is either a flood or
a swamp. Floods are uncontrollable and destructive. Swamps are treacherous
places and can be dangerous to anyone who ventures into them unprepared for
the risks they contain.
Rivers flow in well-defined and specific directions. They move along intently
toward their end. Inside their banks, these rushing waters carve out a path
through the landscape and drive toward their destination with purpose and
authority. Rivers also often contribute to other bodies of water. The
Mississippi River, for example, empties into the Gulf of Mexico. In other
cases, one river may merge into another.
John 7:38 tells us that rivers of living water will flow out of our hearts. In
order for a river to flow, it must have banks or boundaries that define where
it goes. God provides those boundaries to us in that same verse, saying that
“He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said….” The first step is to
believe in Him. We can go no further without that being addressed first. The
second step is to know the Word of God. This verse tells us, “…as the
Scripture has said….” You can’t know how to do what the Scripture says if you
don’t know what the Scripture says!
As we believe in Him and know what the Scripture says, living water will flow
out of us to a parched and thirsty world. Rivers contribute water to the land
through which they travel. Barrenness is turned to fruitfulness when a river
touches it. That is one-way God wants our lives to affect others. We can bring
refreshing and fruitfulness to what was previously dry and barren.
But that is not all. We are also designed by God to be carriers not only of the
Gospel message but also of the power of the Holy Spirit. A river is a powerful
force, sweeping away anything that tries to block it or slow it down. Jesus
intends for us to walk in the same power and authority that He demonstrated
when He was on this people planet so that we will be able to overcome any
obstacle to carrying the gospel to the world around us.
- John 7:38
- Hebrews 4:12
- Genesis 1:28
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