H2O (part 1 of 8)

2016 01-January 16 (11)


The Gospel of John has more symbolism than the other Gospels combined. John forcefully uses bread, light, and water – all elements necessary for human life – to teach us that Christ alone is at the core of our being. Without food, water, and light, then we are without Christ.


In several consecutive chapters of John, the use of water is powerful. The following paragraphs can be used a devotional meditations during Advent or, as illustrated, during Lent. They can be used to bookend a week of meditations with the first and last used as sermon material and the middle ones as material to be read during the week.



Ash Wednesday

John 1:32-34

Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him.  And I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and I testify that this is God’s Chosen One.”

  • After the Gospel’s dynamic introduction of Jesus as the Word, we see the Christ approach John the Baptizer to request baptism. John’s witness is that God told him that he, John, would baptize the Messiah. John baptized with water in the Jordan River.
  • The first time we encounter water it is a symbol of purification. Jesus and the others who were baptized by John wanted others to see that they wanted and needed a visible sign showing their contrition and desire to be one with God.
  • Jesus uses water for his baptism. But more importantly, the baptism is used to reveal the true nature of Jesus, that he is the Son of God. John the Baptizer, the last Old Testament prophet, points to his cousin, Jesus, and proclaims that the Messiah is here and he was privileged to baptize him and introduce him to the world.
  • Water covers two-thirds of our globe; it is extremely common. God uses the ordinary to point to the extraordinary. You are I are extraordinary because we are divinely created and inspired. How are you and I pointing to the even more extraordinary – to Jesus the Messiah? How are you and I in our “common, ordinary lives” showing others who Jesus really is?


Water is essential to our lives. Living water is essential to our souls.


Lead On!