THE LIFE THAT SATISFIES AND OVERFLOWS
In this chapter we see that the Lord Jesus is the One who satisfies the thirsty and overflows from within them as rivers of living water (vv. 37-39). Not only does He live for God and satisfy God, but He also satisfies the thirsty ones who come to Him and overflows from within them.
Many Christians can testify that when they were first saved they experienced the Lord overflowing from within them. However, after a period of time that flowing ceased. Do you know why? This flowing ceases in many Christians because they do not live a life that is qualified to be the burnt offering for God’s satisfaction. Only the kind of life that satisfies God can cause others to be satisfied. Because the Lord Jesus lives a life restricted by God and a life seeking God’s glory for His satisfaction, He can quench our thirst, satisfy us, and overflow from within us.
Now that we have the Lord within us as such a life, we need to live Him. This means that we should live a life restricted by God from doing things for ourselves and also live a life that seeks God’s glory for His satisfaction. When we live this kind of life, spontaneously the fountain of life will spring up within us and overflow.
PERSECUTED BY RELIGION
In John 7 we see the persecution by religion of the life that is restricted by God and seeks God’s glory. Religious people cannot understand such a life. To them, such a life is nonsensical. The persecution in this chapter took place at the time of religion’s holy feast. While they were holding a feast for their enjoyment, they were plotting to kill the Lord Jesus, and this was done according to their Scriptures. They claimed that they wanted to act in a scriptural way, and they charged others to search and see that no prophet arises out of Galilee (v. 52). Furthermore, the religious ones who persecuted the Lord Jesus did so with the pride of knowing their holy law. Concerning this pride, verse 49 quotes the words of the Pharisees, who said, “This crowd which does not know the law is accursed.” They were proud of their knowledge of the law. In principle, the situation is the same today. Much of the persecution we have encountered has come from religious people who seek to act according to their regulations and according to their interpretation of the Scriptures.
ENJOYING CHRIST AS THE REALITY OF THE FEASTS
In this message our emphasis certainly is not on religion’s persecution; it is on Christ, the reality of the feast of tabernacles. Today we are enjoying a foretaste of this feast. In the New Jerusalem we shall enjoy the full taste with the unique tabernacle and the river of water of life. Today we enjoy Christ as the Passover, as the One who feeds us, and we are also at the real feast of tabernacles, enjoying Christ as the river of living water that satisfies us and overflows from within us. Therefore, we are fed and satisfied. But all this is simply a foretaste. In the New Jerusalem in eternity we shall enjoy this feast forever.
Christ is the reality of all the feasts. He is our feast of Passover, unleavened bread, firstfruit, Pentecost, and tabernacles. Christ is everything to us. Therefore, He is the fulfillment of the tabernacle and all the offerings. As the One we enjoy today, Christ is the fulfillment of all these types. How wonderful it is that we may enjoy such a Christ!
(The Fulfillment of the Tabernacle and the Offerings in the Writings of John, Chapter 21, by Witness Lee)