In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come to me, and drink.…
Not like a shallow brook, that runs in winter and is dry in summer; but a fountain that the frost never binds, and that the hot, thirsty day never drinks dry, that is ever full and ever flowing. In the regions of the burning desert they tell me that skeletons lie thick, not only in the paths to the fountains, but lie ghastly white and withering, with the naked skulls looking over the banks into the very waters. With the tongue cleaving to the roof of the mouth, they press on, guided by the green pasture that lifts its head above the sand, and shows where the fountain is. They drank the water in anticipation, but will they reach it? Alas! with what horror in their eyes they gaze on the empty bed, and fight with man and beast for some muddy drops that but exasperate their thirst! The desert whirls around them; they stagger, they fall; hope expires, and they expire themselves; and by and by the sky drops, lightnings flash, thunders peal, and rain pours down, and the water rises in that fountain, and plays in mockery with the tresses of dead beauty, and kisses the faces of the dead. Such things happen. But see you yen cross standing up yonder? It marks a fountain where never man went in vain. No dead souls lie around that cross. Calvary was once a Golgotha — a "place of skulls." It is so no longer. Where men once went to die, men now go to live; and a man never went for mercy there, and for grace to help, and found none. There is now in America a great revival; there was in my own country a great revival. God send us all such revivals I In every church and every country there are times and seasons of revival, when the peace of believers is like a river in glorious flood, rolling beneath bank and ridge; like the sea in a storm, when it sends its waters beyond its common bounds, and overflows the boats that lie highest and driest on the beach. But at all times and in all seasons, I say, that if you will search you will find fulness of mercy to pardon and "grace to help in time of need." The supply, in fact, is inexhaustible. I know mountains have been exhausted of their gold, mines of their diamonds, and the depths of ocean of their pearly gems; but the riches of mercy and of grace in Christ are inexhaustible. They are no less to you than to those who went before you, and there will be no less for those who come after you; and when unborn millions have come, and the world's last man, with a dying sun above him add a reeling earth beneath him, comes up to that blessed Fountain, oh! he will find it as full as it is this day, in its fulness inviting you to wash and be clean, to drink and live, to believe and be forgiven.
(T. Guthrie, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: 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.