TD Jakes - Gleanings From the Well
We thirst for that which we are. If we don't get that which we are, we dehydrate for the lack of what we are, okay? So, though I am comprised of water, I still need water. And I want to talk a little bit about this water, because I thirst. He says, "I thirst", to start this conversation. We will never hear him mention his thirst again until he's hanging from a tree, with nails in his hands and nails in his feet, stretched high and hung wide. There in the lurches of death and life, he stands between time and eternity, and again we will hear him utter what he whispered to this woman, "I thirst". Which makes us wonder what does God thirst for? I understand that I thirst for water, 'cause I'm made of water, and I need water to irrigate the water, to keep the water moving inside of me, lest I dehydrate and began to pass out. But since we will later learn that God is a Spirit. Do spirits get thirsty?
So, I want to talk about this water, because they're having this conversation that we make an assumption that they both have the same kind of water, but they're not talkin' about the same thing. So, she says you don't have anything to draw with, you know. You come down to this well, you must be tryin' to hit on me. You must be tryin' to flirt with me, because you came down to the well, you got nothin' to draw with, I'm suspicious. He said if you knew who I was, you would ask me for water. If I give you the drink of the water that I have, you will never thirst again. Listen to that. So, he's not talkin' about the water that's in the well, 'cause you can drink the water that's in the well and you're going to thirst again, but he said if you drink of the water that I have, you will never thirst again.
And then she begins the long road to humility. The road to humility is a long road. It starts with confession, and she confessed, "Give me this water that I thirst not". The humility of asking. Have you ever seen people who needed somethin' that wouldn't ask you for it? Were in need, but just not going to ask you. Rather pass slap out in the floor than to ask you, because they are so proud they never learned how to humble themselves to say, "Give me this water that I thirst not". But Jesus sits there and waits, not just for her to get a revelation of who he is and what water he has, but for her to get a revelation that makes her humble enough to put her in the vulnerable position of requesting, "Give me this water". There is something missing out of my life. "Give me this water that I thirst not, neither come hither to drink". I'm tired of coming down here. I'm wondering if there's anybody that's tired of making the same trip to the same places to get the same thing that you're gonna need again next week.
I wonder if there's anybody tired of the cycle of your life. Where every morning, you gotta get up and go through the same thing over, and over, and over again. Once a week, you gotta go through the same thing again. I'm wondering if anybody's got a cycle, a cycle that's destroying them, because you keep comin' to get somethin' that's putting a Band-Aid on something that doesn't get better. We all have our whales. We have the places that we go to get some temporary relief, needing something much deeper to satisfy, but this will only pacify. The water that existed in Jacob's well would pacify, but the water that existed in Jesus would satisfy. And I'm wondering are you drinking the water that pacifies or the water that satisfies?
So, I'm calling this "Gleanings at the Well", because I don't want to really exhaust the text, I just want to glean a few principles out of the text to tell you that there are two waters that coexist at the same time. A natural water and a spiritual water are both present in this text. A natural well and a spiritual well are both present in this text, and this woman has come in front of both of them. It's almost like a Coke and Pepsi thing. It's a taste test, okay? She's standing in front of a natural well and a spiritual well. Jesus is Jacob's well, okay? And she can look at Jacob's well, and then she can look at Jesus and look at Jacob's well. This Jacob's well and Jacob's well. And there's water, and there's water, and she's standing in front of them. And to all of this, when she comes face to face with the water, she's at the well, we talked about the water, now she starts making all these excuses.
You know, I don't know this, and I don't know about your doctrine, and I don't know about your theology, and people have all kind of excuses. I don't go to this church, it's a mega church. I don't go to that church, it's a storefront. I don't go to that church, they're the holiest people, I don't go to that church, The Church of God, and we got all kind of religious doctrines. The same people who got all kind of problems, strung out on drugs, hooked on all kinds of stuff, addicted to pornography and tied up to all kinds of stuff, but they got all of these religious reasons to stop them from getting somethin' that will quench your thirst. And she starts coming with all of that, and finally, he gets tired of her, and says, "Where is your husband"? And she said, "Well, you know". She wanted to say, "Which one"? Yeah, where is that husband? She said, "I have none, Lord". She didn't know how to answer him. She didn't know how to answer him, because she didn't know how much he knew, 'cause she was in a situation.
Some of y'all are watching right now, you're in a situation. Yeah, it's complicated. It's hard to explain. This is not exactly my husband, she's not my wife. I wanna talk to you about a God that understands the... I want to talk to you about a God that when you come to him, and you got somethin' goin' on in your life that sounds like..., I want you to know that it doesn't stop him from talking to you, and he still wants to talk to you. He wants to have a conversation with you, but he wants to show you something about yourself that you need to see. "Truth, woman, you do not have one, and the one you got now is not yours". So, that takes me from the well, and I talked about the well, and I talked about the water, and that takes me to the Word. He told her something about herself that was classified information.
The Word of God doesn't just reveal gone, the Word of God reveals you. The Word of God doesn't just help you to see God, the Word of God helps you to see yourself. The Word of God helps you to see your temper. The Word of God helps you to see your pride. The Word of God helps you to see your haughtiness. The Word of God helps you to see your self-righteous. The Word of God helps you to see your arrogance. The Word of God helps you to see your bigotry. That's why I don't understand how you can stay at a church where you are truly getting the Word of God, and yet be a bigot, because the Word of God will show you yourself. I don't believe in prophets that can see everybody's sins, but the Word of God will show you yourself.
And Jesus spoke to her, and he said, "Truth, woman, you have none. You've had five husbands, and the one you got now is not yours". And the thing that got me, it wasn't the well that got her the most, it wasn't the water that got her the most, it was the Word. Because she didn't say come see a well, she didn't say come get some water, she dropped her water pots and ran into the streets to say come see a man who gave me a word. He told me everything I had ever done. The thing that stood out in her was not the well nor the water, it was the Word.
So, you can't have church and not have Word. You can have a good time, but until you have the Word, you don't have anything that shines a light on you, and you'll never drop your water pots just singin.' You gotta go deeper than that and get down to a word that stands up in your face and confronts you. See a man who finally gave me the Word. Wait a minute, isn't this the woman that's been worshiping in the mountain for years? How in the world can you be worshiping in a mountain for years and you have no Word? What kinda worship have you've been having that never revealed God and never revealed you? You've been worshiping in the mountain, no wonder Jesus said, "Ye know not what", because you've been worshiping in the mountain for years, and you never got a Word. And what good is worship without a Word?
The Bible said the Word increased and the disciples multiplied. Where the Word increases, the disciples will multiply. And who would have thought that this, forgive me, this tramp, this woman of ill repute, this husband-snatching tramp of a woman, who would've thought that the word would hit her, too? That she would be a disciple. That she'd be a disciple. A woman that all the other women with whispering about. A woman that she didn't even want to encounter other women. I don't even want to be around her. I'm going to come at an hour that other women are not down at the well. That kind of woman would become a disciple, because the Word don't care who it infects. Whoever opens up to receive it, the Word will come in and get you. And he touched her with the power of his word, like he's touching somebody right now.
He's touching you right in that house, right in that situation with the Word of God, if you would just lower your pride and admit, "Give me that water that I thirst not". Some of us are so proud, and some of us have been hurt so bad, and we use that as a camouflage not to come to church. But I know people who got beat up in the club, but they still went back. Come on, I know people got ripped off with a dope deal, but they still smoking reefer. But when it comes to church, you so hurt, you can't come back to church. I know people got ripped off in the strip cub, but they still went back to the club, but you say church hurt has kept you from church. Well, guess what? The church is closed, now you got to meet him at the well.
So, if the church hurt is your excuse for not accepting Jesus, guess what? The churches are closed all over the country, but they could not close out Jesus. 'Cause Jesus doesn't wait to come to a church, Jesus will come down to the well have a conversation with you about water, and bring the Word into your life. Oh, y'all don't hear me, but I feel like preaching to somebody in this place right now. I don't need no church building to preach the Word. I'll preach the word on the back of trucks. I'll preach the Word on the front porch of houses. I'll preach the Word on basketball courts with a megaphone in my hand. I don't need a crowd to preach the Word. I don't need anybody to help me preach what God called me to preach. I can preach it by myself. Somebody shout, "The Word".
You see, Jesus didn't need a pulpit or a microphone, he sat by a well and preached her a Word. That was the beginning of the transformation of the entire city of Samaria, that ultimately would break the hex and the spells of of Simon the sorcerer, and liberate Samaria from witchcraft. It started with the woman at the well who humbled herself enough to say I'm thirsty. This woman was the beginning of the reformation of all of Samaria. It started with a woman. This woman was a seed, and she was a seed he sowed that Philip would harvest. Later in Acts chapter 8 verse 1, the Bible says, "When persecution arose in Jerusalem, Phillip went down to Samaria". Why did God send him to Samaria? To harvest on the seed Jesus had planted about 10 years before.
So, I talked a little bit about the well, umm-hmm. And I talked a little bit about the water. And I talked a little about the Word. And my fourth one, and I'll be finished, is I want to talk about the worship. Because I really didn't read in my text about the well, and I didn't read in my little text about the water, and I didn't use a part of the text about the Word, I only used the part of the text about the worship. Because the argument she's having with Jesus is how do we worship? It's an argument we still have today. We don't worship with instruments at our church. We worship with instruments in our church. We have a Hammond in our church, you can't have church if you don't have a Hammond B3. We have a pipe organ in our church.
Let me tell you, all of it all this, all the mechanics of worship, that's not the issue. Your people worship in the mountain, you know not what. How long can ignorance worship and not be caught? Your people have been worshiping in the mountain for years, and never knew who you was worshipping. Ignorance can clap its hands. Ignorance can dance and sing. Ignorance can run up and down the aisle. Just because you're making noise doesn't mean you are a true worshiper. Then Jesus validates the Jews and says, "My people know who we worship, for salvation is of the Jews". He said we had it right. We were worshiping the right God, he said, "But the hour cometh, and now is".
Look at that phrase, "The hour cometh, and now is". How could it be coming and now is? Jesus says, "The hour cometh and now is". He was saying it was coming, because a new Pentecost powerful experience was coming, but he had to say now is because he is my Pentecost. He is my feast of unleavened bread. He is my feast of weeks. He is my sacrificial Lamb. He is my Daystar. So, he couldn't say he was just coming, because he is. "I Am that I Am". The hour cometh, and now is, that that... Ooh, I feel the Holy Ghost. "That they, they that worship him, they that worship him must worship him in spirit and truth". They must worship him in spirit, because God is a Spirit.
And I told you at the beginning, you thirst for what you are. And if I am water, and yet I thirst for water, then God is Spirit, and yet he thirsts for Spirit. "The hour cometh and now is that they that worship God must worship him in Spirit and in truth". If I must worship him in Spirit and yet God is a Spirit, I thirst for what I am. Your God is a Spirit, and they that worship him must worship him in Spirit and in truth. Now, you can praise him. You can praise him. Now, you can praise him. You can praise him with your hands. You can praise him with your feet. You can praise him on the high sounding cymbals and the harp, and you can praise him with earthly stuff, but if you're gonna worship him, worship goes beyond the dimension of the physical.
Worship isn't a sound, or a noise, or a jump, or a clap. All of that is how you enter into the gates. You enter into the gates with thanksgiving and the courts with praise. But in order to worship, you gotta go in, into the place where no sound is needed, into the place where no harps are played, into the place where your spirit communes with God. The thing I couldn't understand when I got around wholeness people, I was used to people shouting, but in my church where I grew up, we shouted 'cause somebody sang, or somebody preached us happy. But in a good, old-fashioned Pentecostal service, they can start shouting, and ain't nobody saying nothing. They just go to shouting, and it'll sweep all the way across the church, and ain't nothin' goin' on.
And I couldn't figure out what is that thing that makes them shout and nobody saying nothing? What is that thing that makes them run up and down the aisle and ain't nobody singing nothing? What is that thing that'll sweep over the church, and it'll start over in the corner with a church mother, talking about, "Holy"! Oh, y'all don't know nothin' about that. It'll all over the church, 'til everybody way over in the corner is shouting and slain by the Holy Ghost, and the preacher didn't preach, and the choir didn't sing, but something swept the place.
God is a Spirit. And they that worship him must worship him in Spirit and in truth. In Spirit and in truth. And that's why we can preach in an empty room and not be bothered with a handful of people, and not be disturbed. Because what I got I didn't come from the people. What I got didn't come from the pews, didn't come from the crowd, didn't come from the noise of the tambourine. What I got came from the Holy Ghost. God is a Spirit, and they that worship him. This is an elect group of people, it's not like praise. Praise invites everybody. "Let everything that have breath praise ye the Lord". But worship is exclusive. Worship is exclusive. "They that worship him" means it's not everybody. "Must worship" has a criteria. Must, it's not about breathing now. "They that worship him must worship him in Spirit", why? Because God is a Spirit, and in order to worship him, you gotta give him what he is.
C'mon, c'mon, c'mon, if you're going to quench his thirst, you gotta give him what he is. You need water, 'cause you came from water, and you are water, but God is a Spirit. And if you're going to quench his thirst, you have to worship him in Spirit and in truth. "For the Father seeketh such". What would make God seek? God is omniscient. Omniscient, omni science, all science. Sci, knowing, all knowing. God knows everything at the same time, and yet he says the Father seeks. The seeking God. Ooh, I gotta quit. I gotta stop. Ooh, I gotta stop. The seeking God.
The first thing Genesis teaches us about God, after he had created man, they said God is seeking God. "Adam, where art thou"? I'm looking for you. The omniscient, all-knowing, all-wise, ancient of days, beginning of wisdom, the God who knows the end from the beginning, is found seeking in Genesis. He's still seeking in the Gospel of Saint John. "For the father seeketh such to worship him". He's searching from the annals of Calvary, laying on Calvary, looking up toward heaven with the ground shaking, and the son refusing to shine, and the veil in the temple rent from the top to the bottom. Jesus still says, "I thirst". What does he thirst for that the woman at the well didn't give him? He seeketh such, me and you, to worship him in Spirit and in truth.