The Pharisees heard, but did not really go much themselves to investigate things. The Pharisees heard that Jesus was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John, although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples. When the Lord learned of this he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee. Remember that The Pharisees already did not like John so the fact that Jesus was gaining more ground than John was not something that would make them happy. Again what do we do with the glory people me heap on us, do we give it to God or do we seek it for ourselves? When we try to possess it we will always be jealousy of others. Why do we think that Jesus may have gone back to Galilee?
Now he HAD to go through Samaria. Why do you think Jesus HAD to go through Samaria? I believe it is because he had a divine appointment. The Jews in Jesus’ time had a distain for the Samaritans and did not like them because of their ethnic background. They were so hated that if a Jew had to go on a route that would take them through Samaria that they would not walk through Samaria, but around to not have to actually walk through that region. There were paths worn around the border of the land were the Jews would not even walk through there, as if somehow the dirt in Samaria may be dirtier that someone else’s dirt. But Jesus stirs the stink by saying that he HAD to go through the place that devout Jews would avoid at all costs.
Jesus comes to the town of Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus was tired from the journey, sat down by the well, it was about the sixth hour. This was a central place that would have been known to the people of the region and Jesus stops at the well at the sixth hour of the day. The sixth hour is noon, the hottest part of the day. Very few people would come to the well that time of day who would want to possibly get warmer water because of the heating of the day.
A Samaritan woman came to draw water in the warmest time of the day. Jesus speaks to her kindly asking her for a drink. The disciples had gone into town to buy food. Interesting that the disciples went into town, some of the maybe didn’t want to be there and Jesus has his divine appointment with this woman and asks her for a drink. What are we thirsty for and who do we ask for a drink? The woman quickly notices the irony that he is a Jew and she is a Samaritan woman, and he just asked her for a drink? The text says because Jews do not associate with Samaritans. This was out of the norm. We can get so comfortable with the things that separate each of us that it can make us uncomfortable when those boundaries are challenged.
Jesus answers her, if you knew the gift of God and who was asking, you would have instead asked him for a drink and he would give living water. She responds practically that you have nothing to draw the water with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? In other words, you asked me for a drink, if you had a bucket you would have gotten in for yourself. BOOM! Then she gets snooty with him asking if he is greater that Jacob who gave the well and drank from it, as did his sons and his flocks and herds? WOW, she assumes to know something about Jesus, my interpretation may be wrong, but it seems like she is not asking but implying.
Jesus tells her anyone who has this water will never thirsty again, and beyond that the water will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life. Well if it is that good then give me some then, so I won’t have to come back here.
Go get your hubby. I don’t have one. That’s right, you have had five and now have a live in that you are not married to. That is true.
Sir, I can see that you are a prophet, so let’s talk about something else, anything else. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim we must worship in Jerusalem. Jesus redirects her from the place of worship to the person of worship, and from the place of worship to the posture of worship.
It is neither here nor there, but the true worshipers will worship in spirit and truth, for they are the kinds of worshipers the Father seeks. Did we know that God seeks worshipers and a certain openness and posture?
Woah! She might be thinking that she should not have switched the subject from herself to worship. Then she says, I know the Messiah is coming and when he comes, he will explain everything to us. Jesus then reveals that he is the Messiah.
The disciples return like they have caught Jesus doing something he shouldn’t be. The Bible says, they returned and were surprised to find him talking to a woman. But they didn’t ask him anything even though they had questions.
She leaves the water jar that she came there with, because that was the important task she had come to do, but know something had changed. She went back to the town, to the people who had perhaps looked at her funny, or judged her for her past. She has no fear after encountering Jesus and goes back to the people of the town to tell them about Jesus. She says, “He told me everything I have ever done. Could this be the Christ?” Perhaps they could have said to her, who doesn’t know what you’ve done, but they didn’t. They were so shocked that they listened to her and came out to see Jesus.
Meanwhile back at the well… “Rabbi, eat something.” He says, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.” HUH? The disciples are more confused about what is happening and how he could have gotten food. They ask each other if someone could have brought him food? He then explains to them that there are more things that nourish person than just the food that they eat. “My food, is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.”
He explains that with earthly eyes we might look around and say the harvest is still four months away, but he asks them to look again and see the harvest before them. Harvesting the crop of eternal life, so the sower and reaper may be glad together. There is now reaping without sowing, and both are pleased with the outcome.
Many of the Samaritans believed because of her testimony. Did the disciples share the testimony of Christ when they went to look for food?
They wanted Jesus there and welcomed him in contrast to the Pharisees who did not want Jesus around. He stayed two days and many more came to believe because of Jesus’ words.
They said to the woman, we no longer believe just because of your testimony, but we have heard for ourselves, and we know that he is the Savior of the world. Their experience of Jesus matched the testimony giving by the woman.