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THIRST!! COME! and DRINK!, #575

"In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink." (JOH 7:37)

In our text the Saviour of men has summed up the whole gospel message in three simple words, thirst, come, and drink. Those three words are the sum and substance of the entire gospel message.

Where does salvation begin? With the inner man hungering and thirsting after righteousness. The first step toward salvation is "Come unto Me." Come unto that blessed Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ. What is the fruition of the gospel? It is that we may drink, and drink abundantly. That is the sum and substance of the gospel. Our Saviour's doctrine so clearly tells us His revealed will.

Satan loves confusion. I spoke with a lady last week, and she was explaining to me that her father had faulted her. He said, "Well, you read the Word of God literally." Can you imagine? I had a man tell me that it would make him tremble to think that I would dare to question the insight of these old fathers. "Oh," he said, "they had such gifts of insight." And yet, I watched that same man take the pure, simple words of Christ and trample them under his feet without the slightest sign of fear.

The Lord is telling us, "Come unto me." He didn’t say, "Come unto Mother Mary," or "Come unto John Calvin," "Come unto Joseph Smith." He said, "Come unto me." Do you know why? That is the revealed will of God. Satan loves nothing more than to get our eyes fixed on something beside the Person of Christ. He isn’t particular. We can have it based upon our knowledge of sins and miseries, if that is where we get bogged down. If it keeps our eyes off the Person of Christ, Satan is just happy. He can have it so we get ourselves fixed on some Puritan or some old father or by worshipping the saints, anything that keeps us from coming unto Jesus Christ. You can have your heart fixed on your experience. "Well, I had a given experience" and have your experience become your god and keep you from coming to Christ.

What the Lord Jesus Christ is saying is: "If you thirst, come unto me." Don’t stop at any other gateway. Whosoever will try to crawl up by any other way, is a robber and a thief. He says, "Come unto me and drink." He tells us of His revealed will. Now, where is the limitation of your salvation? Where does it lay? It is found in this one word, "If any man thirst." I want you to see whom the invitation is to. He is not casting the invitation before the swine. He is casting the invitation to those who thirst. It is not the atonement that is limited, but salvation. The invitation is to any man, but the qualification is "those who thirst."

By the grace of God, by the divine influence of the Holy Spirit upon the heart, we are given to thirst after righteousness. Therein we see the grace of God in our salvation. But there is not limitation in the atonement. The limitation is in "If any man thirst."

Can we govern our lives by the secret will of God as though there is some constraint upon us to continue in sin until God fulfills what we read in PHI 2:13, "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure." Do we have some constraint upon us that forces us to continue in sin, and that God gives us this work? No. The invitation is,

"Whosoever has that thirst," if we have a desire, that natural appetite that craves for righteousness. The Lord Jesus Christ says, "Come to me and drink."

The word thirst identifies an inner need-it is like hunger, it is something that accompanies an acute or penetrating consciousness. It isn’t something that you don’t know whether you have it or not. It is not a matter of saying, "Well, I don’t know if I have the work of the Spirit in my heart." When you get hungry, you know you are hungry. It has an inner craving in the soul that cannot be satisfied with anything but food. When you are thirsty you have an inner craving that only intensifies until it has been satisfied and nourished. When you have that spiritual thirst, the things of this life will never satisfy. When you have that inward hungering and thirsting after righteousness, it makes the things that the swine feed upon nauseating. You get no satisfaction out of the things that satisfy the world. They only make your hunger and thirst more perpetual. It is an inner craving.

Look at what we read in MAT 5:6. This is such a blessed mark of the work of God’s grace, when you have and can identify that hungering and thirsting after Christ in your soul. When you can identify that, you have one of the most positive evidences of God’s grace. "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled." Those hungerings and cravings for righteousness shall be satisfied.

Our text tells us wherein we shall be filled. What is it that will gratify that desire? What is it that will satisfy that inner craving? It is only the very person of Christ. Nothing else will satisfy. We may seek His love. We may seek this experience and that experience. We may have and attain a number of things, and that vacuum, that inner-longing desire of the soul is still not satisfied until it is satisfied with the Person of Christ. He says, "Come unto me." Nothing else will ever satisfy.

What a sad commentary to see the multitudes who thirst after the things of this life, who want to fill that vacant place in their hearts with pleasure, money, fame, ease, and self-indulgence. Over all these Christ has written with indelible ink as we read in JOH 4:13, "Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again." The rich man in hell lifted up his eyes and he said, "Send Lazarus with one drop of water," and the answer was no. They will suffer an eternal thirst that will never be satisfied. Those who try to fill their empty place with the things of this life.

Our text speaks of the intense longing a truly quickened soul has for the imparted and imputed righteousness of Christ. When we speak of the imparted righteousness of Christ, we are speaking of having Christ formed in us, that the righteousness of Christ becomes our righteousness in the way of perfect obedience. The imputed righteousness of Christ is what He obtained upon the cross in the perfect satisfaction of the penalty. We need both. So many people are satisfied if they think that their sins are pardoned, but have never lost their craving for sin. So they will come to a religion that will teach them that all you have to do is accept, or all you have to do is believe, whatever recipe they may use, and now you are saved. No. It begins with that inner thirsting, that inner desire being satisfied by Christ in you, the hope of glory. Nothing short of this can satisfy a truly quickened soul.

Any poor sinner who has become convicted of his pollution through sin sees the sinfulness of sin. They are not only primarily concerned with escaping hell, but they want to be cleansed from the power of sin. They have such a longing desire to be delivered from sin itself. Sin becomes the most hateful thing in this world. The thought that you would be left over to wallow in sin would terrify your inner soul. We have a desire to be delivered from the pollution of sin. A poor sinner who is convicted of the pollution of sin will thirst after the cleansing power of Christ's blood.

We are thirsting for that cleansing power of Christ to cleanse us that we come to that fountain that is open for all sin and uncleanness, to be delivered from these things that are so natural to us. Those wrong attitudes, that wrong judgment about sin, that wrong judgment about who Christ is and about who God is, and about God’s wrath upon sin. We want to be delivered from these things, to see sin in its right light, and to see Christ in the right light. We want to see the love of God shed abroad in our hearts, just as much as we want to see the penalty removed.

Our text calls out to any man. There is no sinner who should despair and say, "But I wonder if I am in that." The election of God was kept secret for that very reason. The secret things are for the Lord. The invitation is to all men. Any man who so thirsts after Christ that he can say with the Psalmist in PSA 42:1-2, "As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?" If that is the language of your heart, the Lord Jesus says, "Come unto me." That is where the invitation goes, to those who have the grace of God influencing their hearts and their desires and drawing them unto Him.

The inner affections of the heart hold unbroken sway over a man's will. I want you to ponder that a little. When you have something that your heart-affections are so fixed on that it is all you can think about day and night, think of what a sway that has over your will. You have not only a desire but also a will to accomplish that affection.

The Lord calls out unto the sons of men in EZE 18:31. "Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit." In other words, clean up your attitude. Don’t set your heart on the things of this life. We are reasonable and responsible creatures. We are responsible for where we set our hearts. He said, "Make you a new heart and a new spirit", a different attitude. Sit down like the prodigal son and carefully bring your logic into reason. He was feeding on the things that the swine would leave, and in his logic he said to himself: "In my father’s house there is bread enough to spare, and I perish with hunger." Change your attitude. That’s what the Lord is telling you, for he comes concluding in that verse: "for why will ye die?" He is dealing with your will. In other words, "God worketh in you to will and to do," but does that mean that we fatalistically set our hearts on the things of this life waiting for God to perform some miracle while we are deliberately following on the things that please the flesh? "Why will ye die of house of Israel?" In other words, "Why are you willing to die?" Why are you willing to walk in the ways that you know lead to damnation? Why are you willing to do that?

Our Saviour's invitation to each of you is, "If any man thirst, let him come." As I pointed out, your affections control your will. That is what makes you willing to come to the house of God. It is because your affections are there. How many people in this day have their affections set on the entertainment and the things of this life? They have no affection for the house of God. And therefore they are out doing what pleases the flesh. They are willingly walking in the way that leads to eternal destruction.

This word come expresses action! There is no such thing as sit here and wait until it be given. It expresses action. The prodigal son not only came to himself, he put together a well-planned repentance, and he arose and did it. That is what our Saviour is telling us, "I want to see action. I want you to put your logic to work, get your attitude cleaned up, and I want to make you a new heart, a new spirit, and a new attitude." It expresses action and implies that the will is put into operation.

Christ's invitation for you to come unto Him is a directive to do with your heart and will, what you would do with your feet if He were standing physically before you. If any man will, if any man thirst, if any man has this desire, Come. He is telling us that we do this by our hearts, that from our hearts we come unto Him. We come unto Him with our will as we would with our feet if He were standing right here. It is an act of the obedience of faith.

The mystery of the gospel that was kept secret from the beginning of the world was that the gospel should be preached unto the Gentiles for the obedience of faith. Christ is telling you that if your affections are for Him and for the things that please the Lord, then "come unto me and drink."

Why do the multitudes go on in their own ways of sin even though the voice of the gospel speaks so loudly from Calvary in such tenderness and in such love? The message of the gospel is spoken from Calvary of the sacrifice that He bore, and the penalty of bearing the wrath of God on behalf of His church. When that love will not melt your heart, nothing from Mount Sinai will affect you, except drive you farther away.

The fault is found in your will, which is a trick that Satan tries to pull, often using doctrine. There is the doctrine of free will. Some people, to make sure that they come against the doctrine of free will, shift themselves into a state of total fatalism, and total inability and hatred for the sovereignty of God.

"Come unto me." In His sovereign good pleasure, He calls to every one of us, "If any man thirst, let Him come." The fault is found in our will. I want you to see what Jesus said in JOH 5:40. He was contending with the scribes and the Pharisees and the Jews, and what did He say? "And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life." Where is the barrier, the obstacle that stands between you and salvation? Do you see why Satan wants to make such an issue of this thing called free will? So we are not going to talk about our will, "oh, that’s free will." Satan loves that. I am not talking about the sovereignty of man, it is by grace that we thirst. It is the grace of God that gives us that thirst, but He also tells us the means whereby that is worked in our souls.

Can we plead inability as an excuse for not coming unto Jesus? Can we say that our will is forced or constrained to continue in sin? Would you accept such an excuse from your child if he said he was required to disobey because he was a fallen son of Adam? If your child would look you in the face and say, "Well, I am required to disobey you because of the fall of Adam," how much logic would that be? But, what if he were to argue that therefore you may not chastise him for his deceit, for lying, for cheating or for swearing, because his will was constrained to disobey. What if a child would argue that? How would you respond? Would you accept such an excuse? Or would you rather say, "Your stubborn will must be broken." Have you ever tried raising a family and never found that a child gets a stubborn, rebellious streak. Do you give them their way? The shortest road to peace is give them their way. I have seen a lot of people do it. The only problem is it’s a short-lived peace, because the next time their rebellion is a little stronger. Not only that, but they hang on to it more persistently. To break their rebellion, we have to break their stubborn will.

Now, we as adults, are we saying that we have no power over our wills? Are we saying that we have some constraint on our wills that we are forced to continue in sin because something has to be given? No. Our stubborn, rebellious will must be broken. And if you find that something that you are not able to do now that should create such a vacuum and such a thirst in your soul that it would bring you before the throne of God’s grace saying: "Give me a new heart and a right spirit, work your grace in my soul. Give me that divine influence of the Holy Spirit." We start to realize that we missed something, does it not? We don’t just sit on a bar stool, take another drink, and wait for God to come down with an angel from heaven and make some miracle happen. No. Satan loves that kind of religion, but what Christ is saying is, "If any man thirst." Where are your affections? That’s what He is asking you and me. If you thirst after Christ, He says, then come. We don’t have to wait for anything.

We know that in God's secret will Joseph must go to Egypt to save much flesh alive. Now, I want you to see the harmony in the working of God’s secret will and yet the responsibility of our actions. Are we excused in our actions by trying to prefigure like Jonah did. JON 4:2 says, "And he prayed unto the LORD, and said, I pray thee, O LORD, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil."

It was as if Jonah had said, "Well, I knew that thou wert a God of longsuffering and great mercy and great compassion, therefore I disobeyed the revealed will and fled to Tarshish." Are we going to presume upon the secret will of God and totally trample upon His revealed will? It is very important to understand this. I want you to think about few instances now that I am going to show you in Scripture. I am going to show you where the secret will of God was performed. However, the will of those who performed that will was not excusable. They could not come and say, "Well, it had to be this way."

We know that, in God's secret will, Joseph must go to Egypt. When his brothers went to him, knowing they had caused much evil toward him, they sent a messenger ahead to ask forgiveness. When the brothers came to Joseph, he replied in GEN 50:20, "But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive."

Did that excuse the sin of his brothers in selling him as a slave? Did that justify their actions? Did not his brothers act on their own voluntary will when they cast him into the pit? Was it not a willing, voluntary act that we read of in GEN 37:27, where they said, "Come, and let us sell him [carefully planned. I am talking about carefully planned repentance, but I want you to see how this was carefully planned. Come, and let us sell him] to the Ishmeelites, and let not our hand be upon him; for he is our brother and our flesh. And his brethren were content." Was there any compulsion, any constraint, any force upon their will to cause them to do this? They were deliberately, voluntarily sinning against God and their brother, and they were guilty.

Was there anything in that which indicates that they did so against their will? The guilt it left upon their conscience confirms that their acts were entirely voluntary. If you had done something against your will, your conscience wouldn’t condemn you for having done what you were forced to do.

Now read what we find in GEN 42:21. "And they said one to another, We are verily guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the anguish of his soul, when he besought us, and we would not hear; therefore is this distress come upon us." Was not their sin a voluntary act? There was no constraint upon them to perform that sinful deed in order to bring about God’s secret will. Do you see how terribly dangerous it is that we sit back and presume upon the secret will of God, instead of living by His revealed will?

Even though we know it was God’s secret will that Christ should die upon the cross, yet those who nailed Him there were accountable for their deed. We see that in ACT 2:23. "Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain." I want you to see our accountability. Was Judas' will forced? He went to the Pharisees and chief priests and covenanted, he agreed. Was he forced? No, and yet it was prophesied that it would happen. That clear Judas of his deed. Did the Lord constrain him? No, what the Lord did is remove His restraining grace and allowed him to do it. He did it of his own free will, with no constraint.

We can see what an absolute deliberate act it was in his confession recorded in MAT 27:4. "Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood." He confessed, "I have sinned. I have betrayed innocent blood." No, God did not move upon him with any constraint, His will acted voluntarily.

Now, God's Word tells us in DEU 29:29, "The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law." The revealed will of God is there so we may do what He has commanded us. We are not to attempt to pry into God's secret will, nor attempt to live by the secret will of God with regard to our salvation, so as to govern our lives after His secret will. We have God’s revealed will in the Word to guide us.

Now, the revealed will of Christ in our text is, "If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink." Are we going to sit back and wait for God to do something because we have to wait until we know we are elect? No. Satan loves that stumbling block. He is the one who put it there. No. The qualification is, do you thirst or have an appetite? Do you have a desire to come to Christ? He says, "If any man thirsts, let him come unto me and drink."

Does this teach that the atonement is limited? No. Our Saviour's expression "any man" is not subject to any deficiency in the atonement! There is no person who has to sit back and wait, "Well, but I don’t know if I am elect." "Well, but I don’t know the secret will of God." What the Lord is using as the only qualification is your will. Are your affections set on Christ? Is this where your desires are? If they are, Come. Our Saviour’s atonement is sufficient to encompass the whole world as we see in 1JO 2:2. "And he is the propitiation [in other words, the appeasing of God’s wrath. Does that speak about the atonement? Certainly. He is the propitiation] for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world." It isn’t that we have to question the atonement or the secret will of God. We have to examine our own hearts, and we are going to account on the Day of Judgment for what our attitudes are, and for what our hungerings, thirstings, and desires are.

The atonement or reconciliation from God's side is unlimited. Look at ROM 5:18. "Therefore as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life." Can you read any limitation in the atonement there? That philosophy is absolute blasphemy.

It is salvation, not the atonement, which is limited. That limitation is found in our text, "If any man thirst." That is where the limitation is. What is in your heart? Do you desire to come to Christ? Do you desire to feed upon the husks that the swine are leaving? Examine your own heart. If it is your desire to be reconciled to God, the Lord Jesus Christ says, "Come." Come unto whom? Come unto Calvin? No. "Come unto me." In other words, come unto Christ. We need to come unto the Person of Christ.

Those whose affections are still set upon the things of this world have no desire after the knowledge of God's ways. That’s where the problem is. They are not willing to come unto Him that they might have life.

Look at REV 22:17. "And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. [That’s what Christ is telling us in our text.] And whosoever will [see how the will is connected with that], let him take the water of life freely." There is no limitation, no barring, no being too sinful or having waited too long. Today, if that desire is there, Come.

Coming to Christ is turning your back upon the world-abandoning all confidence in self-to come empty handed at the feet of Christ. Beware, don't become satisfied with any substitutes to the very person of Christ!

Our text does not say, "come to the Lord's table." Some people can end there or at the waters of baptism. That is not the end. Some people believe that they can come to their pastor and once they are a member of the body, they are in Christ. He is not saying to come to these things. He says, "Come unto me." The Person of Christ has to be the sum and the substance and the center of our yearning desire.

Our text says, "If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink." Our text not only says, "If any man thirst, let him come unto me [but it also says], and drink." A lot of people come short on that. They will come to Christ and fail to drink. It is here that so many fail! There are so many who seem to speak of the things which accompany salvation, i.e., an awakened conscience, an exercised heart about God's will, and even a conscious need of Christ, and yet stop short of drinking.

JOH 6:35 says, "And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst." The words believeth and drinketh are synonymous. In other words, this word drink in our text is synonymous with the words believing in Christ. It signifies appropriating Christ to yourself, that you dare to reach out by the hand of faith and say, "Christ died for me." That is drinking from the fountain. It is making Christ your own.

As we hold our text in its context we can see whom Jesus was talking to. Look at JOH 7:31. "And many of the people believed on him, and said, When Christ cometh, will he do more miracles than these which this man hath done?" They seemingly believed. This is why He was trying to show them what it meant to believe.

Even though it says, "many of the people believed on him," this was not a saving faith. Do you know why? There was no action, no coming to Christ. They had head knowledge and historically they believed that in fact it was Him. But they were not coming to Him. They were not drinking. They still would not come unto Him that they might have life. This seems to be synonymous with JOH 2:23-24. "Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover, in the feast day, many believed in his name, when they saw the miracles which he did. But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men." He knew their hearts, they still were not weaned. Their hearts still thirsted after honor and the pride of life. They were not coming to Christ, thirsting after Him. Do you know why? They were looking for a king that was going to come in pomp and glory, and He was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. They weren’t hungering after Him at all. They believed that He was the Messiah, but they had no desire for Him.

It seems as though the confusion over Jesus' miracles was more a murmuring than an actual placing of their trust in Him for salvation. Look at JOH 7:32. "The Pharisees heard that the people murmured such things concerning him." They did not believe with a saving faith. They were not hungering and thirsting for Christ. They did not see beauty in His Person. What they were really saying was, "Is that Him?" They saw by His miracles. They saw by the evidence. They couldn’t deny that He was the Messiah who fulfilled the prophecies, and yet they had no desire for Him. Jesus was talking to them when He said, "If any man thirsts."

In its context, our text is teaching the need of our will being broken, and dissolved in the Father's will. Look at JOH 7:17. We want to see that in context Jesus is still speaking to this same audience. "If any man will [if he is willing. If that becomes his heart’s desire to know and do the will of the Father] do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself."

The open rebellion of those who sought to slay Jesus were not acting out of blindness. They saw, and their own hearts witnessed to them, that in fact He was the Messiah, but they had no desire for Him. They were acting out of envy and rebellion against coming to Jesus, that they might have life.

Look at JOH 8:31. "Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him [He is talking to this same group, those Jews who believed on Him], If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed." See where the problem lay. They were not coming to Him to bow at His feet. They were not reaching out to touch His golden scepter or willing to come under His kingship. Coming unto Christ is to come and touch that golden scepter. That is, from the heart, to come under His authority and His kingship. They were not doing that.

Jesus cautions that the call of the gospel is not forever. It is very important that you and I understand that. Look at HEB 3:13-15. "But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if [are there contingencies in God, in His Word? Oh yes. We are made partakers of Christ if] we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation."

In effect, this is what Jesus is telling these people. See, in context with our text we read in JOH 7:33-34, "Then said Jesus unto them, Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me. [What He is saying is that the gospel is yet a little while, and it was the last day, that great day of the feast, he cried saying, ‘If any man thirst, let him come unto me. There is a limit to how long the message of the gospel will go forward.] Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither ye cannot come." He is saying that there comes a time when the call of the gospel will be removed.

This was equal to saying, "To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts." How solemnly this applies to our present day. How solemnly this applies to our loved ones. How many of our loved ones do we see who still cherish the things of this life? Who do not understand that the invitation of the gospel does not last forever. Today, if you will hear His voice, today!

Look at MAT 24:43. "But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up." How often we see people in their youth going forth as if they have an eternity in this world, and not realizing how many times people are taken away in their youth. Not realizing how often a life’s journey ends in a moment. Think about the following tragedy. Some two hundred people killed in an instant with one blast. Little children, babies, teenagers, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, sixty year olds, in every walk of life, every age, two hundred people killed in an instant. Today. We don’t know about tomorrow. We don’t know about this afternoon. We don’t know about the rest of this morning. Now is the time. Now is the day of grace. Jesus says, "If any man thirst, let him come."

We know not the day or the hour of His coming, but we know Jesus said, "Yet a little while am I with you," that is, we still have the trumpet of the gospel today. We may still hear our Saviour's blessed invitation today. Tomorrow may be forever too late.

In JOH 7:37, in our text, it says, "In the last day, that great day of the feast [He was proclaiming that to the last day. They were trying to take Him. The chief priests had sent officers to take Him (verse 32) and those officers stood and heard Him proclaim this gospel message,] …If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink."

Look at verses 43 to 46. "So there was a division among the people because of him. And some of them would have taken him; but no man laid hands on him. Then came the officers to the chief priests and Pharisees; and they said unto them, Why have ye not brought him? The officers answered, Never man spake like this man." I want you to see the power of the word that went forth: "If any man thirst." It came with such power that the very enemies of Christ could not even lay a hand on Him. They couldn’t touch Him because of the force and the power by which He proclaimed that blessed gospel message. "If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink."

Notice this cry of salvation was proclaimed right up to the very last-even while they were conspiring to take Jesus. Can you imagine that love, the longsuffering of our blessed Saviour, while they were standing there, sent by the scribes and Pharisees and the chief priests, with officers to take Him, before that audience, that unbelieving mass of Jews, He is crying, He is not just saying it in a whisper, the Lord Jesus cried, saying, "If any man thirst, let him come unto me."

Even though the chief priests, and the rulers of the people "sent officers to take him," as we see in verse 32, yet our loving "Jesus stood and cried, saying." He is still telling them the things that pertain to their peace. As He entered Jerusalem, He wept and wailed, saying, "If thou hadst known, even thou, in this thy day the things that belong unto thy peace, but now they are hid from thine eyes." And on that last day of the feast, He is still proclaiming the qualification, "If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink."

Where Jesus told the leaders of the people in verse 33, "Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me," it is equal to what we read in PRO 1:24-28. Many people don’t understand what that means, "and a little while and you can’t find me." "Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded; But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: I also will laugh at your calamity." [He says, ‘Where I am you cannot come. Now, you can no more come unto me.’] I will mock when your fear cometh; When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you. Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me."

What is Jesus telling these people? "Ye shall seek me and not find me." Do you know why? "Because I called and ye would not answer."

I was talking to a young man not so long ago about prayer, and I asked him, "Now, is it logical when you know the will of God and disregard it, you come before the Lord and tell Him what you want and expect Him to grant it? And you have no concern over His will."

The Lord says, "Ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: I also will laugh at your calamity. I will mock when your fear cometh…. Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer." Now He will no longer say, "Come unto me."

Today is the day of salvation. Today is the invitation extended to each one of us, and Jesus stands and cries, saying, even though we have sinned against Him, even though we have rebelled against Him, He is crying and saying, "If any man thirst." There is the only qualification. Are you willing? Is it your desire? Is that what your affections are set upon? If your affections are set upon the Person of Christ, He says, "Come unto me and drink." In other words, and appropriate it to yourself.

Amen.


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