WOMEN AT THE WELL
Traveling from Jerusalem in the south to Galilee in the north, Jesus and his disciples took the quickest route, through Samaria. Tired and thirsty, Jesus sat by Jacob's Well, while his disciples went to the village of Sychar, about a half-mile away, to buy food. It was about noon, the hottest part of the day, and a Samaritan woman came to the well at this inconvenient time, to draw water. In his encounter with the woman at the well, Jesus broke three Jewish customs: first, he spoke to a woman; second, she was a Samaritan woman, a group the Jews traditionally despised; and third, he asked her to get him a drink of water, which would have made him ceremonially unclean from using her cup or jar. This shocked the woman at the well. Then Jesus told the woman he could give her "living water" so that she would never thirst again. Jesus used the words living water to refer to eternal life, the gift that would satisfy her soul's desire only available through him. At first, the Samaritan woman did not fully understand Jesus' meaning.
Although they had never met before, Jesus revealed that he knew she had had five husbands and was now living with a man who was not her husband. Jesus now had her attention! As they talked about their two views on worship, the woman voiced her faith that the Messiah was coming. Jesus answered, "I who speak to you am he." (John 4:26, ESV) As the woman began to grasp the reality of her encounter with Jesus, the disciples returned. They were equally shocked to find him speaking to a woman. Leaving behind her water jar, the woman returned to town, inviting the people to "Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did." (John 4:29, ESV). Meanwhile, Jesus told his disciples the harvest of souls was ready, sown by the prophets, writers of the Old Testament, and John the Baptist. Excited by what the woman told them, the Samaritans came from Sychar and begged Jesus to stay with them. So Jesus stayed two days, teaching the Samaritan people about the Kingdom of God. When he left, the people told the woman, "... we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is indeed the Savior of the world." (John 4:42, ESV)
Question: "What should we learn from the woman at the well?"
Answer: The story of the anonymous Samaritan woman at the well, recorded only in the Gospel of John, is an enlightening one, full of countless truths and influential lessons for us today. In John 4:4–42 we read about Jesus’ conversation with a lone Samaritan woman who had come to get water from a well (known as Jacob’s well) located about a half-mile from the city of Sychar in Samaria. This was an odd woman. She was a Samaritan, a race of people that the Jews extremely despised as having no claim on their God, and she was an outsider and looked down upon by her own people. This is demonstrated by the fact that she came unaccompanied to draw water from the municipal well when, during biblical times, drawing water and conversation at the well was the communal highlight of a woman’s day. However, this woman was detested and noticeable as decadent, a single woman living willingly with the sixth in a sequence of men. The story of the woman at the well teaches us that God loves us in spite of our ruined lives. God treasures us enough to aggressively seek us, to welcome us to tenderness, and to celebrate in our worship. As an outcome of Jesus’ dialogue, only this type of woman could understand what this means. To be needed, when no one else was interested. Other items to consider:
1) Only through Jesus can we obtain and receive eternal life: “Jesus answered, ‘Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life’” (John 4:13–14; cf. John 14:6). 2) Jesus’ ministering to those outcasts of the Jewish society (the Samaritans) reveals that all people are valuable to God and that Jesus desires that we demonstrate love to everyone . . . including even our enemies (John 4:7–9; Matthew 5:44). 3) Jesus is the Messiah (John 4:25–26; 1:41; Matthew 27:22; Luke 2:11). 4) Those who worship God, worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:23–24; Psalm 145:18). 5) Our testimony about Jesus is a powerful tool in leading others to believe in Him: “Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman's testimony, ‘He told me everything I ever did.’ So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. And because of his words many more became believers. They said to the woman, ‘We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world”’ (John 4:39–42).
Additionally, we learn from Jesus’ dialogue with the woman at the well three absolute truths about salvation:
1) Salvation comes only to those who recognize their desperate need for the spiritual life they do not have. Living water can be obtained only by those who recognize that they are spiritually thirsty. 2) Salvation comes only to those who confess and repent of their sin and desire forgiveness. Before this immoral woman could embrace the Savior, she had to concede the full burden of her sins. 3) Salvation comes only to those who take hold of Jesus as their Messiah. For the absolute truth is that salvation is found in no one else (John 14:6; Acts 4:12).
A water well is an excavation or structure created in the ground by digging, driving, boring or drilling to access groundwater in underground aquifers. Water covers 70.9% of the Earth's surface and is vital for all known forms of life. The human body is made up of 75% water. we need water to survive. Proverbially, God often digs wells for us not just for physical sustenance, but for spiritual living. These wells include the commandments, protections, and the Word of Jesus, which is the living water (John 7:38). But, sin stops up our source of water (Jesus) and our wells of souls have to be dug up by ourselves (Isaiah 1:15), or by God (lev 13:14). Consequently, we are forced to operate without water. The lack of water in physiological situations will eventually become disease conditions. Spiritually, the lack of the Word (water) is an open invitation for Satan to wreak havoc on our souls (Job 1:7), and we are left to wander about in a continued thirsting condition. But God is merciful towards us (Ex 34:6) and will often send help to unstopped previously dug wells in the form of ministers (Rom 10:15) and angels (Hebrews 13:2)