Feb 072014
 

Read John 4:1-42

Theme: life of Jesus

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Now when Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John 2 (although Jesus himself did not baptize, but only his disciples), 3 he left Judea and departed again for Galilee. 4 And he had to pass through Samaria. 5 So he came to a town of Samaria called Sychar, near the field that Jacob had given to his son Joseph. 6 Jacob’s well was there; so Jesus, wearied as he was from his journey, was sitting beside the well. It was about the sixth hour.

7 A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” 8 (For his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.) 9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) 10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” 11 The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and his livestock.” 13 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” 15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water.”

16 Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” 17 The woman answered him, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You are right in saying, ‘I have no husband’; 18 for you have had five husbands, and the one you now have is not your husband. What you have said is true.” 19 The woman said to him, “Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you say that in Jerusalem is the place where people ought to worship.” 21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. 24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” 25 The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things.” 26 Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.”

27 Just then his disciples came back. They marveled that he was talking with a woman, but no one said, “What do you seek?” or, “Why are you talking with her?” 28 So the woman left her water jar and went away into town and said to the people, 29 “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” 30 They went out of the town and were coming to him.

31 Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.” 32 But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.” 33 So the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought him something to eat?” 34 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work. 35 Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest’? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest. 36 Already the one who reaps is receiving wages and gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. 37 For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ 38 I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.”

39 Many Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me all that I ever did.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they asked him to stay with them, and he stayed there two days. 41 And many more believed because of his word. 42 They said to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is indeed the Savior of the world.”

Thoughts to consider

I love this story, it’s a story of God’s compassion and love for the marginalised in society, no-one is out of His reach. He loves to touch the broken, forgive them and then restore them.

We can miss, in our society, the shock of not only a Jew speaking to a Samaritan but a man speaking to a woman in public. It was just not done. Jesus is no ordinary man though, He will break every cultural barrier to reach the lost. The Jews hated the Samaritans so much they would take huge detours to avoid the region. If you could imagine Jesus living in Israel today, it would be something like Him crossing the barricades into the Palestinian west bank (not exactly but you get the idea)

Today Jesus gives us a master class in witnessing; how to approach people, how to not compromise but lovingly confront them about their sin, how to win them and how to make them into disciples and win others.

I find the disciples quite amusing in this passage, they seem quite obsessed with their stomachs! Firstly every single one of them leaves Jesus to go shopping for food. It’s not all 12 yet as some have yet to be called but it shouldn’t take more than a couple of them to get supplies. When they return they completely miss what is happening and offer Jesus food. Jesus even uses their favourite subject (food) to make a point.

· Do you think you ever miss opportunities to speak to people because you are thinking about other things?

· Consider what things in your life you can adjust to give you more opportunities to reach people with the good news of Jesus.

· How can we learn from Jesus from this passage about how to approach people?

· Jesus had words of knowledge to open this woman up to hearing the gospel. Ask God to help you with supernatural insights as you speak to people. He wants to equip you!

· Thank Jesus for the wonder of His salvation, that once you were like this woman in darkness, but He reached down into your darkness and revealed Himself to you. What a merciful gracious God!

· Think about what it means to worship the father in spirit and truth

Prayer

Father I thank you that when I was in darkness you shined your light into my life and revealed Jesus to me. Help me to consider those around me who don’t know you, help me to hear from you as you give me ‘keys’ to speak into their lives. Help me to constantly worship you in spirit and truth because you are worthy. All this I ask in Jesus’ name, amen.

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