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Episode from the podcastHope for the Journey

The Purpose of Thirst

Released Tuesday, 9th March 2021
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March 9, 2021
Seven Last Words Series #5
The Purpose of Thirst
Episode 46

John 19:28 (NIV)
28  Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I am thirsty." 

John is the only gospel that records the 5th word that Jesus spoke on the cross.  And there may be several reasons as to why he penned these words, but let me suggest to you 3 possible reasons as to why this short sentence is in his gospel.  

  1. John wrote these words to remind us that Jesus said them in fulfillment of the OT prophesies.  He points that out at the beginning of the verse.  Take a look at it again – the 28th verse. 
    1. John 19:28 (NIV)
       28  Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I am thirsty."

      This is a fulfillment of what is written in the 69th Psalm.

      Psalm 69:21 (NIV)
      21  They put gall in my food and gave me vinegar for my thirst.  

  2. To correct Gnostic error that Jesus was only spiritual and not physical. John would often point out details in the life of Jesus that would prove that they were the ones who were incorrect.  In his gospel John mentions that Jesus got tired and fell aside in the boat.  Jesus got hungry.  And here he brings up the fact that Jesus was thirsty.  
  3. To remind us that Jesus is identifying with us. In his humanness, he understands our experiences of life. Jesus understands what we are going thru as we encounter the issues, the struggles, the everyday demands of life.  
Spiritual Thirst - because we are created in the image of God, we have a spiritual thirst as well. David expressed that in the 42nd Psalm.  Notice what he said.  
  • Psalm 42:2 (NIV)
 2  My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 
  • When Jesus was talking with the woman at the well he said this:

    John 4:10, 13&14 (NIV)
    10  Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."