Lesson 3:
The Need of the Immoral—Life’s Satisfying

Bible reading
You may find it helpful to also read the entire case found in John 4:1-42.

John 4:7, 13, 14, 24
7 There came a woman of Samaria to draw water. Jesus said to her, Give Me something to drink.
13 Jesus answered and said to her, Everyone who drinks of this water shall thirst again,
14 But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall by no means thirst forever; but the water that I will give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into eternal life.
24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truthfulness.


The second case in the Gospel of John is that of an immoral, lower class woman. After regeneration, mankind’s next great need is for satisfaction. Because man is created as a vessel to contain the divine life, all mankind is thirsty to be filled with God as their content. In John chapter 4, Jesus revealed that this woman’s inner thirst could never be quenched by any material, psychological, or religious “water.” Only Himself as the living water can fully satisfy. Through contacting Him in her spirit, she drank Him as the living water, experienced eternal joy, and offered true worship to God.
Bible study reading
Please prayerfully read through the following portions of ministry related to this lesson.

The thirst of this Samaritan woman had led her to many wrong things, such as having five husbands and living with a man who was not her husband. That was the kind of life she found herself in. She sought the physical things to satisfy her, but found only dissatisfaction. The six men represent the physical and material things, which could never satisfy people.

The husbands of this woman are a sign. Christ should be the only husband. In 2 Corinthians 11, the apostle Paul told us that he has espoused us to Christ. In other words, he has engaged us to Christ. Christ is the real husband. But this woman had five husbands besides one other man. The reason this woman was wicked and immoral was because she was thirsty. Because her many husbands could not satisfy her, she remained dissatisfied. When the first husband did not satisfy her, she sought satisfaction from her second husband. But her second husband did not satisfy her inner thirst either. Then she married the third one, but this one also could not satisfy her; neither could her fourth and fifth husbands satisfy, because the living water was her only need. Regardless of how much she drank the earthly water in her many husbands, she still felt thirsty. Therefore, the Lord told her that whoever drinks of this water shall thirst again. Anyone who drinks the water of physical, religious, and traditional things will thirst again. Only the Lord Jesus has the living water that can quench our thirst. (Life-study of John, msg. 12, section 1)

Listen to the Lord’s words about the matter of worship. “Jesus said to her, Woman, believe Me, an hour is coming when neither in this mountain nor in Jerusalem shall you worship the Father. You worship that which you do not know; we worship that which we know; for salvation is of the Jews. But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and reality; for the Father seeks such to worship Him. God is Spirit; and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and reality” (John 4:21-24). This word was given to instruct her regarding the need for exercising her spirit to contact God the Spirit. To contact God the Spirit with her spirit is to drink the living water, and to drink the living water is to render real worship to God. (Life-study of John, msg. 12, section 2)

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Going deeper
Please read or listen to these materials for an in-depth study of this lesson.

Further reading:
Radio broadcast link:
Broadcast 17, The Need of the Immoral—Life’s Satisfying (1)
(Click the link above and select Broadcast 17) 
Footnotes from Recovery Version of the New Testament:
John 4:13, footnote 1
John 4:18, footnote 1
John 4:24, footnotes 3-4
1 Thessalonians 5:23, footnote 5

Questions for personal or corporate study:
References in parentheses indicate readings or broadcasts that may be helpful in answering the questions.
  • What is the significance of the woman’s inner thirst and dissatisfaction as typified by “this water” in John 4:13 and the five husbands? (Life-study of John, msg. 11)
  • What does it mean to worship God in spirit and truthfulness? (John 4:24, footnotes 2-4; The Key to Experiencing Christ—the Human Spirit)
  • What are the three ways to take the living water as shown in John 4:15-26? (Outline of the Gospel of John, Recovery Version of the New Testament)
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Next week

The Need of the Dying—Life’s Healing

Regardless of whether we have a respected, high standing in society like that of Nicodemus or have a lower status like that of the immoral Samaritan woman, our primary need is the same. In both cases, Jesus turned them from teaching and religious practices to the divine Spirit in our human spirit (John 3:6; 4:24). This crucial organ is the unique place where man can receive, contact, and experience God as the divine, eternal life for His expression. Next week we will see the third case. This concerns the son of a royal officer who was about to die. Although the royal officer begged the Lord Jesus to visit his sick son, He only had to speak the life-giving word and the boy was healed. Here, we can find a key principle in how to realize the healing capacity of this life.

We highly recommend using the printed Life-study messages as a tool to explore this lesson. There are over 1,900 Life-study messages in total, and this amazing resource expands and develops this lesson in greater detail.

View Life-study of the Bible resources on our website
Works Cited

Lee, Witness. Life-study of John. Anaheim: Living Stream Ministry, 1985.

All verses and excerpts © 2021 Living Stream Ministry.
Used by permission. Reproduction is prohibited. 
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