Summary: Jesus started his earthly ministry hungry and ended his earthly ministry thirsty. As we return to Jesus on the cross we come to what may be the easiest of the seven words to understand. Or is it?
Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. (John 19:28-29)
Let me open today’s message by asking you a penetrating question: “When was the last time you did anything for the first time for Jesus’ sake?” Has your Christianity become so predictable that you can’t remember experiencing anything new and fresh in the Spirit of God? We serve a God that is so infinite, and yet we are so predictable.
Be careful, God’s Spirit will not allow you to accept the status quo. It is imperative that we rethink our lifestyle, our priorities, and our Christianity in order to give rise to a fresh breath of God’s Spirit such as at Pentecost. God is calling you to discover those life-giving waters of the Spirit once again, waters that will result in a walk with God that is filled with vitality, freshness, authority, and anointing.
Where do you find fresh strength when you are fatigued from work?
How are you rehabilitated when you have been crippled by sin?
What births a future dream when your past has been plagued by failure?
When you cry out, “I thirst,” how are you satisfied?
The fifth of Jesus’ words on the cross provides the answer to these questions.
Do you know how important water is to our physical bodies? The water in our body determines the vitality, strength, and energy associated with daily living. When our bodies fail to retain the right amount of water, we become dehydrated. Think about these facts associated with the human body and water:
Ø Our bodies are ⅔ water.
Ø The body absorbs cold water faster than hot water.
Ø By the time you are 70-years-old, you will have required 1½ million gallons of water.
Ø Studies show that increasing water consumption can decrease fat deposits. Water is a natural appetite suppressant.
Ø If you loose 2% of your body’s water supply, your energy will decrease by 20%. A 10% decrease in water, you will be unable to walk, and a 20% decrease – you’re dead.
Well, I think you get the point. And what is true of the physical is also true of the spiritual. Because God has made you with a spirit, soul, and body that get thirsty, if you fail to satisfy that thirst, your spirit, soul, and body become dehydrated. Do you know where to look for satisfaction?
Jesus started his earthly ministry hungry and ended his earthly ministry thirsty. As we return to Jesus on the cross we come to what may be the easiest of the seven words to understand. Or is it?
The savior was placed on the cross at 9:00a.m. and there he hung for three hours as the eastern sun beat against his broken and bloody body. At 12:00p.m. a cloak of hellish darkness settled on the jagged hill of Calvary. For three hours Jesus hung as the remedy to mankind’s sin. At 3:00p.m. this darkness was dispelled as quickly as it had appeared, and the intense light and heat of the Palestinian sun once again began to bake Jesus.
In the Genesis garden, sin knocked mankind unconscious. Ever since, he has been stumbling through the ring of humanity waiting for the bell to ring so he can find a corner of relief, relief that is found in the words, “I thirst.”
I see two messages in the words, “I thirst.” First, Jesus provided a path of salvation in the world you and I face daily. To think that the shortest words of Jesus were merely an appeal for water leaves the text completely flushed of its most important meaning. But, could the second meaning be that Jesus desired a drink of the living water that He spent His life inviting others to receive; the relief that we’ve all been looking for?
On that day, God changed man’s focus from himself to God. Man has always been confused and puzzled about his purpose. The cross of Jesus Christ is the answer to man’s speculation about why we exist and why we thirst.
The easiest way to discover the purpose of an invention is to ask its creator. The owner’s manual for God’s creation is the Bible. This owner’s manual explains how we got here, what we are to do with our life, what the pitfalls are, and what the future holds.
It is in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone. (Ephesians 1:11 The Message)