Water and Spirit Water is used throughout the scriptures as a symbol for the Holy Spirit. For example in John 4:13-14 Jesus is speaking to the woman at the well. Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
Water is also used a symbol for the Word of God in the scriptures for obedience to the word of God brings cleansing. “How can a man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to your word.” Psalm 119:9
Obedience to the word brings cleansing to our soul while the Holy Spirit brings refreshing to our spirit as we are obedient. In Romans 6 we learn that by being immersed or baptized in water upon our confession of Christ as Savior breaks the power of sin in our lives. Collecting spiritual water is likened to remaining obedient to the will and teachings of God as found in the Bible and as with water collection in the natural, contaminants can creep in our water supply if we stray from his clearly laid path. In James 4:17 we're told that those that know the truth, but don't do it, are in sin. Knowing the way to Christ, but doing your own thing instead is a contaminant in your water supply which if left unchecked will lead to sickness and eventually death...
We can take lessons from the natural process of collecting water and apply these principles to our spiritual lives for understanding how to effectively gather, clean and purify drinking water is a skill that everyone must understand. The days of simply drinking from the local creek are pretty much gone due to all the chemicals and waste being pumped or dumped into our ground water systems today just as taking the word of every “man of God” can lead us into error.
In the end-times the Bible tells us that all the waters will become bitter and as blood (Rev. 16:3-7), praise God for the provision that comes from He who is the living water!
Dangers in Drinking Water Cholera – Cholera is the friendliest bacteria found in water as it typically only leads to diarrhea. It is treated by continually replacing the lost fluids by drinking clean water. Continuing to drink cholera infected water however can lead to increased infection which will include leg cramps, vomiting, dehydration and shock which would require fluids to be replaced intravenously. Without proper treatment at an advanced stage, death can occur.
Hepatitis A – Hep A is obviously not friendly as it’s a disease of the liver caused by viral infection. Symptoms include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, fever, dark urine, tiredness, and abdominal pains and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes). While the disease is not life-threatening it can take months to overcome its effects with medication. Typically once overcome your body will create antibodies that will aid in the prevention of a recurrence of the disease.
Giardiasis – Giardia is a single celled parasite that lives in the intestines that is ingested by drinking water contaminated by sewage. This organism can survive outside the body for a long time and is one of the most common waterborne diseases. Symptoms include greasy stools that tend to float, diarrhea, cramps and nausea. Advanced symptoms can lead to weight loss and dehydration while others have no symptoms at all. The problem is typically alleviated by flushing the parasite from the body over a period of several weeks with clean fluids and medication if required.
Chemical Pollutants – The big issue with chemical pollution is that it won’t boil out of your water. Most of the chemicals are heat resistant and must be filtered out through charcoal or another type of filter system. If you find water in the middle of a tobacco, soybean or corn field, you can bet that the water has been contaminated by some sort of chemical. Check for flora around the area and look at their condition, do they look healthy? Are they thriving in the area? Is there fish or frogs in the water? Frogs in the water are a good sign of as proper ecosystem but this again is no guarantee of a chemical free environment. When in doubt, filter and boil it out.
Natural Sources of Water Seasonal creeks and run offs – These areas are typically only active during and shortly after a rain and should be treated like chemically polluted water as anything sitting atop the ground surface will be flushed into the stream thereby polluting the available water. These water sources should be filtered and boiled or chemically treated. Rainwater – Your best source of clean water comes from heaven above, collecting it is simply a matter of taking advantage of the weather and utilizing whatever containers you have available. If you are in a heavily industrialized area however you can get some chemical taste and possible infection. You can also collect rain water in the way of dew by tying cloth around your ankles and trekking through some tall grass. The cloth will quickly become filled with water which can be wrung out into a bowl or container to be filtered of turbidity (solids in water).
Rivers and Streams – Like Creeks and run offs rivers and streams should be filtered whenever possible and boiled. Millions of people still rely on water from rivers and streams around the world for the daily water; drinking straight from the source however is not advised because bacteria and viruses can more easily reproduce in slow moving water and when the water is up these sources fill with run-off from the surrounding areas and serve as nature’s toilet system flushing waste out of the area.
Plant Water - Here in the Eastern Woodlands and also in many jungles water can be harvested from vines by cutting a section approx. 3 feet long at an angle on both ends; water will drip from of the cut surface of the vine and provide some needed hydration. If the water you find in cloudy or bitter coming from a vine, it should be avoided as it’s the wrong species. You can also tap trees such as the maple or birch which provides sap which can be drank as it is or boiled down to a sweet liquid much like syrup. In the desert Aloe and Agave plants survive extended period of drought and store liquids in their leaves which can be harvested for liquid.
Coconuts also provide a wonderful source of fluids which aids in the replacement of electrolytes. Lastly, you can plastic tie bags over leafy boughs on live trees and allow the sun to heat and condense the air in the bag which will create water after several hours.
Filtering and Purifying Water Boiling – Boiling remains the best method of killing off the majority of living organisms within water. Theories range from boiling 15-20 minutes to only bringing to a boil for a few moments. Again, boiling does not remove chemicals. The fact is, if you are below 10,000 feet in elevation, you only need to bring water to a rolling boil to eliminate contaminants. If however, you are above 10,000 feet, water boils at a lower temperature and thus requires a longer period of time to boil to eliminate the same contaminants. It is in these situations you would want to allow water to boil at least several minutes.
I liken boiling water to receiving an impartation of the Fire of God; this is a radical call to holiness. It's a simple and the most direct way to eliminate toxins in your life, seek our the holiness of God by the power of the Holy Spirit. Johnathan Wesley said it best “The spirit of God has set me ablaze and the people come to watch me burn”. Let that be the example we leave to those around us- let us boil over with the Spirit of God!
Filtering – Filtering by means of a modern filter such as a Sawyer, LifeStraw or Katadyn are excellent for removing turbidity and many viral and chemical agents, but boiling then using a filter such as these is your safest bet. When you know you have some chemically affected water you can also make a primitive filter from charcoal, grasses and sand. Filtering through these sediments within a container removes the majority of chemicals that could adversely affect your body. If you rely on a modern, commercial filter take time to read the instructions so you will know how to properly use it and under what conditions it will work most effectively.
Spiritually speaking, we must filter out what we hear from others. Not everyone that speaks with claimed authority, such as a well known pastor or teacher will give us accurate information. We must understand, all men are fallible and despite the best of intentions, they can and often do lead us astray. But by filtering their message through the Word of God, we can get to the truth of a matter and decide whether or not to receive the water which they have offered us...
Purification Tablets – If you use purification tablets of any type, read the instructions. They often make the water taste like bleach, but it’s very safe to drink. When using these agents shake the water well to make sure the chemical tablets reaches all the water in your container and if you have an enclosed container, be sure to flip it over so that cap is hit by the chemically cleaned water to kill off any hidden bacteria lurking in the cap.
A purification tablet in the spiritual sense is a Rhema word from God. It's the written word made active and in the now; information that brings immediate clarity to a situation you may be struggling with. These “tablets” may come from the Spirit speaking to your mind or from a brother or sister in Christ that feels “led” to share something with you....
Desalination – If all you can find is salt water, you will have to desalinate it (remove the salt). The salt in saltwater overworks the renal glands quickly which leads to kidney failure, shock and a host of other issues. Distill the water hanging a can full of water over a fire and placing a clean cloth over the lid to collect all the steam. From time to time wring out the steam into a potable water container to drink once it cools. The salt that remains behind in the can should be utilized to season game meats as you harvest them.
Desalination is the spiritual sense is the times when you feel like you are stuck in a rut, waiting on God to move. The process adds pressure until you come to a decision, you'll continue to stew or you'll shed the impurities holding you back and burst forth by the power of the Spirit. These ruts can go on for as long as you allow them to, God is always waiting on us, it's never the other way around; all we have to do is shed the dead weight (sin, disobedience, unforgiveness) that will allow us to get back on the narrow path to eternity with Him.