Jesus Meets a Woman at a Well
AUGUST 9 - Nº 221 John 4:1-26
Jesus and his followers left Judea to return to Galilee. The biblical account states that he “had” to go through Samaria. This was not the normal route that Jewish travelers took. They usually crossed over the Jordan River then walked north through Perea and Decapolis before crossing back into Galilee. This made the journey much longer, but it kept them from coming in contact with the Samaritans whom they considered vile and unclean. But there was someone important Jesus “had” to meet in Samaria. Around noon, he and his disciples came to a well in a small town called Sychar. Jesus was tired, so he sat down by the well while his disciples went into town to buy food. As he was resting, a Samaritan woman came to draw water. Jesus asked her, “Will you please give me a drink?” The woman was surprised. She could tell he was Jewish (perhaps because of his accent). “Why are you asking me for a drink?” she wanted to know. “I am a Samaritan woman, and Jews don’t normally talk to Samaritans!” Jesus replied, “If you knew who I was, you would actually ask me to give you a drink of living water.” The woman looked around. “Sir,” she said, “the well is deep, and you don’t have a way to draw the water. Where do you plan to get this ‘living water’? Are you greater than Jacob who dug this well?” Jesus must have smiled as he responded, “People who drink from this well will continue to get thirsty. But people who drink the water I am offering will never get thirsty again. It will be as if there is an eternal spring of water bubbling up from inside that keeps them alive forever!” The woman replied, “Please give me this water so I don’t have to keep coming back to this well!” “Go get your husband and bring him here,” Jesus instructed her. “But I don’t have a husband,” she replied. “I know you are telling the truth,” Jesus said, “because you have had five husbands, and the man you are now living with is not your husband.” The woman was shocked. She didn’t know how to respond, so she changed the subject. “Sir, I can tell that you are a prophet. Please help me understand something important. The Samaritans teach us that we are supposed to worship God at this mountain (see #172 - June 21), but the Jews insist that everyone must go to Jerusalem. Who is right?” “Woman, believe me, a time is coming when no one will worship God here at Mount Gerizim or in Jerusalem at Mount Moriah. You Samaritans come here, but you don’t even know Who you are worshiping. The Jews at least know the truth about Who God is and that He has chosen to bring salvation through them. But they don’t understand that God wants a relationship that involves more than just their outward actions. God is a Spirit, and He is looking for people who will worship him in Spirit and in Truth.” The woman wasn’t sure how to respond. “I know that someday the Messiah will come. And when he does, he will explain all these things to us,” she finally stated. “I—the person speaking to you right now—I am the Messiah!” Jesus responded.
Jesus changed his travel itinerary so that he could introduce himself to a Samaritan woman living an immoral lifestyle! She was every bit as important to him as the ruler of the Jews he had just met in Jerusalem named Nicodemus! Are you too ‘choosy’ about the people you introduce to Jesus? He wants to meet everyone!