Toward the end of the eighth century b.c., Jerusalem came under siege by King Sennacherib of Assyria. When King Hezekiah of Judah learned about the oncoming attack, the Bible says “he took counsel with his princes and his mighty men to stop the waters of the fountains which were without the city: and they did help him” (2 Chronicles 32:1-3).
Hezekiah’s first thought was to protect Judah’s source of water—the fountains. To do so, he had his engineers stop the fountains, or redirect them, by carving a 1,700-foot water tunnel through solid rock (verses 4, 30). This impressive subterranean structure can still be seen in Israel today.
To cut this channel, workers began tunneling through the rock on either end, until they met—incredibly—not only in the middle, but also at a perfect gradient to facilitate the flow of water. Inside Hezekiah’s tunnel, carved into the rock wall near the exit, an inscription reads: “The tunneling was completed …. While the hewers wielded the ax, each man toward his fellow … there was heard a man’s voice calling to his fellow … the hewers hacked each toward the other, ax against ax, and the water flowed from the spring to the pool, a distance of 1,200 cubits.”
The way this tunnel was constructed is powerfully symbolic.
When facing invasion, Hezekiah focused on what was perhaps Jerusalem’s most critical element: its only reliable water source. The king commissioned a colossal engineering effort to protect it. God records this in the Bible to remind us how desperately we need spiritual spring water from God. Without water, how do you live? Physically or spiritually speaking, you have to get to the water. You have to be willing to carve through solid rock—to do whatever it takes to break through and get to the water. That spiritual effort and that spiritual water are the only things that will lead to a joyous and fruitful life. Hezekiah’s example to us is crystal clear: Whatever it takes, keep those living waters flowing in your life.
Isaiah 55:6-7 admonish us, “Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.”
Seek God while there is still time to find Him! So much depends on what kind of effort you expend to go after God. This is one of the great lessons a true Christian must learn: that it takes intense effort to obey God. The Apostle Paul told us to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. It takes tenacious, laborious, energetic work—and it requires more than just human power (Zechariah 4:6; Matthew 19:26). The only way to get to God, to get to the spiritual water, is to ask for God’s help in this effort every single day. But God won’t do all the work for us, either; we must put forth our own effort.
We do have to hunger and thirst for His way of life, as Jesus said (Matthew 5:6; see also John 7:37-39). We must desire it; we have to be absorbed in it. If we are, the waters will never stop flowing.
“The Holy Spirit of God is pictured as living water,” Herbert W. Armstrong wrote in an article titled “This is the Life! Real Abundant Living” (Good News, May 1986). “It comes into you. You go to Christ to receive it. You don’t bottle it up and put a cork on it. It flows out from you. The Holy Spirit flows out in love, peace and joy, radiating from you. There is no other way to find these resources. There is no other way to live a happy life.”
Isaiah 2 describes a time following “the last days,” when God’s headquarters will be established in Jerusalem, with Christ sitting on David’s throne. Other prophecies, such as Zechariah 14, speak of the landscape changing dramatically to allow for the fountain of God—rivers of living water—to flow from God’s holy temple.
In the same way that water will flow in and out of this city, people from all over Earth will flow in and out of Jerusalem! And so will God’s law and Spirit. Isaiah 11 says at that time—now just ahead of us—“the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.”
“The laws of God are a way of life,” Mr. Armstrong continued. “The Bible in its whole is a way of life. Jesus Christ said that we must live by every word of God. If you live by every word of God, you will live according to the way of life that God has laid down in His Book, the Holy Bible.
“It is the way of life that is the abundant life. It’s the way of the happy, the cheerful life that simply radiates. It radiates sunshine and happiness, and it’s always happiness within. The well is not dry. It’s filled!”
God’s wellspring is full. It is gushing with knowledge and power to saturate your life with fruitful abundance and joy! And it is worth carving through stone, if you have to, to get to it.