The Gospel Of John
Chapter 4





  1. Jesus gave personal attention to one man in John 3; here He does to one Samaritan woman.
  2. Each detail of Jesus being in Samaria and meeting/teaching this woman should move you, for Jesus was sent to seek and to save the lost, even the worst among them (Mark 5:1-20; 16:9).
  3. Jesus was sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, in general (Matt 10:6; 15:24; Rom 15:8; Gal 4:4), but here is one of the exceptions, for He converted a Gentile (Matt 15:21-28).
  4. The worship of God is not a matter of personal preference. God has absolute standards for it.
  5. Jesus did not care about sincerity, culture, tradition, or personal feelings of false worshippers.
  6. Embrace Bible evangelism, which was often the pursuit and conversion of one soul at a time.
  7. For Jesus as Shepherd, Jesus Loves Losers.
  8. For God’s reformation, Jesus or Paul?
  9. For more about truth, What Is Truth? 
  10. For loving evangelism, For Love of a Soul.
  11. For true soul winning, Proverbs 11:30.


  1. 1-6 Why and how Jesus was in Samaria
  2. 7-9 Initiation of conversation with a woman
  3. 10-15 Jesus used water as a spiritual metaphor
  4. 16-19 Jesus had supernatural knowledge of her
  5. 20-24 Precious explanation of time of reformation
  6. 25-26 Jesus identified Himself as the Messiah
  7. 27-30 Samaritan woman invited city to Jesus
  8. 31-34 Jesus used meat as a metaphor
  9. 35-38 Jesus used harvest as a metaphor
  10. 39-42 Two days converting many Samaritans
  11. 43-54 Second miracle in Cana of Galilee

1 When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John,

When therefore the Lord knew.

  1. Jesus Christ, by virtue of His divine nature, could easily know all things of men.
  2. He might also have learned of it by exchanges with John’s disciples (3:25-26).
  3. Even Jesus considered circumstances, which wise men will constantly measure.

How the Pharisees had heard.

  1. The Pharisees had inquired of John’s authority; this was sure to arouse concern.
  2. They surely had received reports of more baptizers following Jesus of Nazareth.
  3. Jews argued with John’s disciples some aspect of John versus Jesus’ baptisms.

That Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John.

  1. This was the issue that caused John’s disciples envy for his popularity (3:26).
  2. John chapter 3 ends with John Baptist rejoicing in Christ’s growing ministry.

2 (Though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples,)

Though Jesus himself baptized not.

  1. There is ministerial wisdom to avoid any unnecessary difficulties for others.
    1. If Jesus Himself had baptized, how many would have settled for Thomas?
    2. Consider how God buried Moses’ body to keep Israel from worshipping it.
  2. Paul himself made preaching more important than baptizing (I Cor 1:13-17).

But his disciples.

  1. His disciples did the actual dipping, but by His Messianic authority (3:26; 4:1).
  2. For more of assignment of actions to one in authority, see notes on John 3:26.

3 He left Judaea, and departed again into Galilee.

He left Judaea.

  1. Until it was time to die, Jesus was careful about unnecessary risks (7:1,6,8,30).
  2. In this case, He had three years to live and minister before dying in Jerusalem.

And departed again into Galilee.

  1. This is the region west of Sea of Galilee, including Nazareth, Capernaum, etc.
  2. He had gone into Galilee after His baptism for His first miracle (Jn 1:43; 2:1).
  3. He now returned again and performed His second recorded miracle (4:43-54).

4 And he must needs go through Samaria.

And he must needs go.

  1. We do not believe there are accidents or coincidences in such moves by any.
  2. God is able and actually does arrange such events from eternity (Acts 15:18).
  3. We accept providence in our course of life, how much more the Son of God?

Through Samaria.

  1. Check a map, you will see that Samaria lies north of Judea, south of Galilee.
  2. In order to get from one to the other, the direct route passes through Samaria.
  3. Samaria had been and was a city, but also the region named by the Assyrians.
  4. In it lived Assyrians and some Jews and children of their mongrel combination.

5 Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.

Then cometh he to a city of Samaria.

  1. Samaria is a city itself in much of the Bible, the capital of Israel, but not here.
  2. Samaria was also the designation for a district lying between Judah and Galilee.
  3. It was more or less where the Assyrians had settled after replacing the Israelites.

Which is called Sychar.

  1. There is too much confusion and disagreement about this town to pick identity.
  2. It was likely near Shechem, based on what follows about Jacob and his well.

Near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.

  1. Moses did record Jacob buying land of Hamor in Shechem (Gen 33:18-20).
  2. Note that Jacob came to Shalem, which might be John’s Salim of John 3:23.
    1. Shechem is where Jacob hid idols and earrings under an oak (Genesis 35:4).
    2. Shechem is where Joseph’s brothers kept sheep and sold him (Gen 37:14).
    3. Shechem is where the children of Israel buried Joseph’s bones (Josh 24:32).
    4. Shechem was a city of refuge named by Joshua for the purpose (Josh 21:21).
    5. Shechem was where Joshua covenanted with Israel at death (Josh 24:1,25).
    6. Shechem was judged by God for killing 70 sons of Gideon; the city was salted after it fell, but Abimelech was killed by Jotham’s prophecy (Jdgs 9).

6 Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.

Now Jacob’s well was there.

  1. No mention is made of the well in the O.T., but water and wells were necessary.
    1. Abraham and Isaac both dug wells that are recorded (Genesis 21:30; 26:18).
    2. Since Jacob was in this area much and had his sheep there, a well is obvious.
  2. The woman of Samaria understood Jacob and his family used this well (4:12).

Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well.

  1. Here is a nice reminder of our Lord’s humanity no different than our infirmities.
    1. Throughout the New Testament, we must often identify the nature at hand.
    2. In His divine nature, Jesus is Jehovah; He never slumbers or sleeps (Ps 121).
    3. In His human nature, He was subject to the same body limitations as are we.
  2. Why was He tired? Because multitudes thronged Him for healing and teaching!
    1. Note how Jesus could not enter into one city due to crowds (Mark 1:40-45).
    2. He protected His own from the crowds, for they had no leisure (Mark 6:31).
    3. If you do not get tired by God’s work, you are not doing enough (Gal 6:9).
  3. There is nothing wrong with sleep in the right amount; merciful men know it.
    1. Without a doubt, and by Solomon’s repetitions, many do sleep too much.
    2. However, God expects you to limit your efforts for good sleep (Ps 127:1-2).

And it was about the sixth hour.

  1. The reckoning of time counted from 6am, which made this noontime for lunch.
    1. Jews counted each new day from 6pm at night, the night preceding (Ge 1:5).
    2. We follow the Romans to calculate hours from midnight and noon instead.
  2. A good example of Bible hours is the householder’s day laborers (Mat 20:1-16).
    1. Peter went on a roof to pray at noon and became hungry then (Acts 10:9-10).
    2. Crucifixion hours??? … The Time of Jesus’ Death and Inerrancy: Is Harmonization Plausible?

7 There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.

There cometh a woman of Samaria.

  1. Every individual person, man or woman or child, is uniquely known by God.
    1. This is one of the most hope-filled facts of our existence to excite our souls.
    2. You are not alone; believers know they will never be forsaken (Heb 13:5-6).
  2. Keep in mind the last section of John chapter 2, where Jesus avoided some men.
    1. Many believed on Him for His miracles, but He avoided them (Jn 2:23-25).
    2. Here we have a stranger that knew about Messiah but was received by Jesus.
    3. Not only did Jesus receive her, but Jesus also committed deep truth to her.
    4. We cannot prove absolutely that this woman was God’s elect, though the evidence is in that direction, and either way it does not alter interpretation.
  3. Yet, there is another category of women that Jesus pursued and committed to.
    1. It is very encouraging to consider how Jesus visited them in their situations.
    2. Consider Anna (Luke 2:36-38), Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38-42; Jn 11:1-5), Peter’s mother-in-law (Mark 1:30-31), the Canaanite woman (Matt 15:21-28), a certain poor widow (Luke 21:1-4), Salome (Mark 15:40; 16:1), the sinful woman (Luke 7:36-50), Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Susanna, and many others (Luke 8:2-3), a woman with an issue of blood (Luke 8:43-48), and Lydia (Acts 16:13-15), and Mary his mother (John 19:26-27).
    3. Never forget the four marked women in our Lord’s genealogy (Mat 1:3,5,6).
    4. Our resurrected Lord appeared first of all to Mary Magdalene (Mark 16:9).
  4. Whatever conviction or opportunity you have toward Christ, run with it, now!
    1. You can come to Christ today in humble submission as a Samaritan woman.
    2. Do not turn away from Him that is present today and speaking by His word.
  5. There are other foolish and wicked women that rejected Christ (Acts 13:50).

To draw water.

  1. Great to meet people, as Abraham’s servant found Rebekah (Genesis 24:13-20).
  2. Give thanks for the fact you have anywhere from 5 to 25 or even more faucets!

Jesus saith unto her.

  1. Get it now! Jesus initiated the conversation by asking this stranger for a favor.
    1. He could easily have waited for his apostles to return from the town (4:8).
    2. He was not so puritanical He avoided talking to a woman alone at a well.
    3. How many times have you initiated conversation with peers, waiters, etc.?
    4. You may never help anyone with the truth of the gospel without initiating.
  2. Of course, you can wait for someone to pull you aside and ask of your hope.
    1. Does the Bible imply this in I Peter 3:15? Or is this on trial for the gospel?
    2. The context indicates that this is on trial for the gospel (I Pet 3:13-14,16-17)
    3. For detailed comments on this verse.
  3. Do not forget the Bible emphasis about the one-on-one work of soul winning.
    1. If you had great news or a dangerous warning, you would tell all related.
    2. We have already learned in this gospel about Andrew and Philip (1:41,45).
    3. Aquila and Priscilla took Apollos home for lunch and truth (Acts 18:24-28).
    4. You are related to folk and live, work, shop, work out, vote, etc. with them.
    5. If you have no souls, is it due to hate, laziness, fear, ignorance, or evil life?

Give me to drink.

  1. Did Jesus need a drink right then? Could He have waited? Did He have a goal?
  2. He used this “excuse” to initiate conversation with this woman of Samaria.

8 (For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.)

For his disciples were gone away.

  1. We are told in plain terms that Jesus was alone to meet the woman of Samaria.
  2. We learn that some are too scrupulous, and Jesus could have waited for water.

Unto the city to buy meat.

  1. Since it was noon, we can learn from Peter it was time for lunch (Acts 10:9-10).
  2. They did not haul all their food but would stop when necessary to replenish.

9 Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.

Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him.

  1. Jesus got a response, and He knew He would, for more than one reason. Glory!
  2. He knew by His divine nature; He knew by the culture of Jews and Samaritans.
  3. Here is one of few encounters and exchanges reported of Jesus with a Gentile.
  4. Let Gentiles bless God for His saving grace to rejected people (Rom 15:8-12).

How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria?

  1. Jesus knew this would be the answer and it would be the most likely answer.
  2. Jesus did not violate any moral code of conduct, for the only issue was cultural.
    1. Some react to puritanical excess and would avoid any such female exchange.
    2. Jesus would never have done anything even morally questionable with God.

For the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.

  1. The Jews and Samaritans did not have any unnecessary or friendly dealings.
  2. They had long resented each other for their different origins and religions.
  3. Assyrian integration formed a nation to worship Jehovah and idols (II Kgs 17).
    1. They were Assyrians, and likely half-breeds, that pretended true religion.
    2. Jews were all around them, so it is obvious to believe there were half-breeds.
    3. They only accepted the Pentateuch (books of Moses) and rejected the rest, which they did for many hundreds of years, even to a very few still today.
  4. The lesson that even carnal, reprobate worship moves God is of value itself.
    1. Mongrel religion with Jehovah took man-eating lions away (II Kg 17:25-28).
    2. God’s laws on any subject will work, even if practiced by religious pagans.
    3. For example, think child training, which works no matter the parental faith
    4. To the degree pagan nations practice God’s civil laws, they are advanced.
    5. America’s Marines sing about Jehovah.
  5. History (Josephus) says the Samaritans built and used a temple on Mt. Gerizim.
    1. They claim it was the original place of Jehovah’s worship, changed by Jews.
    2. They claim the Jews’ religion was corrupted after their long stay in Babylon.
    3. They sought to mimic the true worship of God on Mt. Moriah in Jerusalem.
    4. They did this to help Sanballat and others rejected by the noble Nehemiah.
    5. Samaritans owned the Jews as brothers in prosperity, enemies in adversity.
    6. John Hyrcanus (164-104 BC) reduced Shechem and destroyed the temple.
    7. The superstitious Samaritans continued to worship toward the sacred spot.
  6. Consider how Jesus related to the cultural hatred between Jews and Samaritans.
    1. He mercifully protected a village and rebuked violent apostles (Lu 9:51-56).
    2. He described how a Samaritan helped a wounded Jew in love (Lu 10:29-37); He used the cultural difference to define a neighbor for a scornful lawyer.
    3. Jesus healed ten lepers and praised the thankful Samaritan (Luke 17:11-19).
    4. The Jews that hated Jesus resorted to calling Him a Samaritan (John 8:48).
  7. More can be read of Samaritans in Ezra, Nehemiah, Josephus, Maccabees, etc.

10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.

Jesus answered and said unto her.

  1. Jesus did not let a reminder of cultural differences discourage His evangelism.
  2. He turned the conversation spiritual into content and intent by great wisdom.

If thou knewest the gift of God.

  1. There are two things here the poor Samaritan woman did not know in truth.
    1. She did not know the gift of God’s Son for eternal life, just like Nicodemus.
    2. She did not know the identity of the man that had asked for a drink of water.
    3. This in spite of the fact that the Jewish scriptures foretold it (Isaiah 9:6).
  2. The gift of God by context and doctrine is Jesus the Son of God and eternal life.
    1. Jesus used singular gift, not plural gifts (Rom 11:29; 12:6; Ep 4:8; Heb 2:4).
    2. Jesus had explained this gift to Nicodemus shortly before this event (3:16).
    3. Jesus continued with this woman by working up to everlasting life (4:14).
    4. God’s love of elect among Jews and Gentiles was proven by giving Jesus.
    5. Every gift of God to His elect children is based on this first gift (Rom 8:32).
    6. Belief in Jesus Christ was the evidence and claim of eternal life (3:18,36).
    7. God giving His only Son for salvation is an unspeakable gift (II Cor 9:15).

And who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink.

  1. The Lord Jesus tied the two things together – God’s gift and where He was?
  2. What a transcendent blessing to learn salvation is a gift and to meet the Savior!

Thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.

  1. Jesus inserted a third item here based on how their conversation had started.
  2. We first understand living water as a metaphorical representation of salvation.
    1. Jesus began His conversation with her by asking for a drink – of well water.
    2. Jesus continued His conversation with her by spiritualizing His use of water.
    3. Since it is a metaphor, we should not be so narrow as to make it exclusive.
    4. We should see eternal life related to Christ, the gospel, faith, and the Spirit.
  3. Asking for the Holy Ghost is something Jesus taught and we should embrace.
    1. In His great encouragement to prayer, He mentioned the Spirit (Luke 11:13).
    2. Paul prayed often for the Spirit for others (Ep 1:17-18; 3:14-19; II Kgs 2:9).
  4. If we follow the continued exchange, Jesus will indicate it to be the Holy Spirit.
    1. The only water she could offer was ordinary H2O that never truly satisfies.
    2. Jesus said that He had water unlike hers in that His would satisfy forever.
    3. Jesus explained as He progressed that His living water related to eternal life.
    4. Jesus died to secure the Spirit for His elect children that believe and obey.
    5. Jesus had shortly before used water as a metaphor for the Holy Spirit (3:5).
  5. Jesus soon explained by the same writer that living water is the Spirit (7:37-39).
    1. In His further description, men should satisfy thirst by drinking His water.
    2. Drinking of Christ is believing on Him, which puts the living water inside.
    3. The Holy Spirit in parentheses gives us the timing of His presence in men.
    4. One week after Jesus’ glorification, He gave the Spirit to baptized believers.
    5. The death of Jesus Christ obtained the permanent presence of God with us.

11 The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water?

The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with.

  1. If the Lord does not open eyes to spiritual truth, we would be as blind as she.
  2. Nicodemus had asked if he could enter his mother’s womb a second time (3:4).
  3. Those in John 6 got obsessed with the earthly benefits of a free lunch, so they murmured against the real message of believing on Him to everlasting life.
  4. Some sayings are hard, but let us never turn away from the Lord (Jn 6:64-69).
  5. There is no reason her use of “Sir” gave Him unusual respect (12:21; 20:15).

And the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water.

  1. The well is known today, and the water level is near 100 feet below the surface.
  2. Without right equipment, maybe a bucket to attach to a rope, he could not draw.
  3. She was not interested in His plight but began a disrespectful reproach of Him.
  4. How witty natural man can be to make light or impossibility of spiritual truth!

12 Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle?

Art thou greater than our father Jacob.

  1. She responded nationalistically (and ignorantly) with a measure of prejudice.
    1. The Jews appealed to Abram and Moses, so this woman appealed to Jacob.
    2. At best she was half-breed, Assyrian and Ephraimite; at worst, an Assyrian.
    3. Why are natural men intent to respond arrogantly rather than ask a question?
    4. They traced their lineage through Ephraim and thus Joseph the son of Jacob.
    5. This is similar to Muslims claiming Abram, though by Ishmael the reject.
    6. When God blesses a family, they assign grace to their blood, but it is not.
  2. Since she knew Jesus was a Jew, she should have known Jacob was His father.

Which gave us the well.

  1. Jacob lived nearly 1800 years before the Assyrians immigrated to this country.
  2. How in the world did Jacob give this well of Joseph to these half-breeds at best?

And drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle.

  1. Ascribing greatness to Jacob, she related the well’s sufficiency for him and his.
  2. She knew Samaritans and Jews respected Jacob, invoking the greater? Hardly!
  3. The Seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob sat before her, but she knew Him not.

13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:

Jesus answered and said unto her.

  1. He could easily have rebuked her for her ignorance, disrespect, and carnality.
  2. He gently explained the difference between natural water and spiritual water.

Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again.

  1. Natural water, all she had in her well, does not satisfy and leads to more thirst.
  2. He had answered Nicodemus that a flesh birth could only produce flesh (3:6).
  3. And eventually, though unsaid, the body shall die because of its insufficiency.

14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst.

  1. The living water I told you of satisfies forever and need not ever be taken again.
  2. It is entirely unlike the natural H20 you have in this well and must draw often.
  3. The grace of Christ is entirely unlike all aspects of all false religions worldwide.

But the water that I shall give him shall be in him.

  1. The water Jesus spoke of here would be in a man – the Holy Spirit (7:37-39).
  2. Jesus would teach something similar to His own apostles much later (14:17).
  3. Jesus Christ is in each believer by personal presence of His Spirit (Ro 8:9-10).
  4. This incredible subject, details in John chapters 14-16, if most fabulous indeed.
  5. Jesus gave this incredible gift of the Spirit after His exaltation just as promised (Joel 2:28-32; Jn 7:37-39; Acts 1:4; 2:14-21,33,38-39; 8:20; 10:45; 11:17).

A well of water springing up into everlasting life.

  1. It would be a well with a spring in it to supply sufficient water forever and ever.
  2. It would not be a static, stagnant quantity of water drawn from a well like yours.
  3. Let many references to the gift of the Holy Spirit provoke great appreciation.
  4. Paul taught Ephesus (Eph 1:13,17; 2:18,22; 3:5,16; 4:3-4,30; 5:9,18; 6:17-18).
  5. John, the holy penman here, closed out Revelation with the same water (22:17).

15 The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.

The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water.

  1. Consider the conversion so far of this woman by her response to spiritual truth.
    1. Her questions or disrespect were gone. She wanted the water He described.
    2. She will continue in ignorance but learning more and more as He continued.
    3. She is different than men in John 6 that murmured against Him (6:41,52,61).
  2. She knew His description was not regular water, but she still thought naturally.
    1. For her whole response indicates she still thought naturally about drawing.
    2. Before it is over, she will see free wine and milk unlike Gerizim (Is 55:1-5)!
  3. There is no reason her use of “Sir” gave Him unusual respect (12:21; 20:15).

That I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.

  1. She did not see His figurative and spiritual words, which does not prove much.
    1. Even the disciples were often confused and lost, as they showed soon (4:33).
    2. She continued to make progress as our Lord taught her more and more truth.
  2. May God our Father by His Spirit and word keep us from missing greater glory!
  3. Paul was not content for Ephesus – begging God for His fulness (Eph 3:14-19).

16 Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither.

Jesus saith unto her, Go.

  1. Jesus took the exchange with this woman to the next level by divine wisdom.
  2. In His divine nature, He knew her marital situation and how she would respond.
  3. In His human nature, He would not have known either of these two secret facts.

Call thy husband, and come hither.

  1. By divine wisdom, our Lord the soul winner took this woman to the next level.
  2. His request prompted a new level of exchange and information about Himself.
    1. He was able to see through her discreet answer covering for her fornication.
    2. He was able to reveal Himself gently to her by a personal miraculous sign.
  3. His request led to much of the city being converted and Him staying two days.

17 The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband:

The woman answered and said, I have no husband.

  1. Jesus granted that her answer was well said, for she did speak the letter of truth.
  2. However, she covered former adultery and present fornication by her answer.

Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband.

  1. Jesus granted that her answer was well said, for she did speak the letter of truth.
  2. However, she covered former adultery and present fornication by her answer.
  3. Jesus did not jump on this woman for her fornication, leaving that until later.

18 For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly.

For thou hast had five husbands.

  1. She did not have a husband, because either five men died or five divorced her.
  2. Yes, her first and third husbands might have died and three others divorced her.
  3. Due to her present fornication, we may quite safely assume five likely divorces.
    1. Why had they divorced her? Likely not for poor housekeeping, but adultery!
    2. Why had they divorced her? Maybe for other reasons given the next clause.

And he whom thou now hast is not thy husband.

  1. She was living with a man at the present time, but she was not married to him.
    1. This is fornication if there is no other related marriage, but adultery for her.
    2. This is a regular sin in America of couples living together without marriage.
  2. Degradation of morals and tradition in America are not new in some senses.

In that saidst thou truly.

  1. Jesus repeated and defined what He meant when He said she answered well.
  2. There was surely the letter of truth, though the reality of her life was covered.
  3. Given her knowledge and the situation, she was not obligated to tell everything.
  4. Jesus will not jump on this woman for her fornication, leaving that until later.

19 The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.

The woman saith unto him, Sir.

  1. There is no reason her use of “Sir” gave Him unusual respect (12:21; 20:15).
  2. What a difference from how many could or would have answered this history!
    1. Many or most today would say, “Are you judging me? I love Jesus, too.”
    2. Many or most today would say, “My history is none of your business.”
    3. Many or most today would say, “Don’t mock me, stranger, about my life.”
    4. Many or most today would say, “You don’t my heart or my problems.”
    5. Many or most today would say, “Are you a legalist trying to condemn me?”
  3. She showed a measure of humility and wisdom to recognize what most will not.
    1. Jews desired to kill Jesus and Lazarus for defeating death (11:45-48; 12:10)!
    2. Jews in Gethsemane rejected Jesus’ admission that threw them down (18:6)!
    3. How many healings on the Sabbath caused them to conspire to kill the Lord?

I perceive that thou art a prophet.

  1. We would not perceive anything of God or Jesus without help of regeneration.
  2. While this perception was not enough to prove eternal life, it was a great start!
  3. If you witness to others, you will not get initial statements similar to this one.
  4. Prophets had the ability from God to perceive things and/or to reveal things.
  5. Some Jews said the same of Jesus that will eventually leave Him (Jn 6:14,66).
  6. Other Jews blasphemed by saying He did miracles by Beelzebub (Matt 12:24).

20 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.

Our fathers.

  1. Tradition by virtue of birth, family, or nation is a common error regarding truth.
    1. While it is a dangerous curse 99% of the time, it is divine blessing about 1%.
    2. The fact is that big Buddhists or Muslims beget little Buddhists or Muslims.
    3. The source and criterion for truth is one and only one thing – His revelation.
    4. The Bible is what men must test all doctrine by regardless of their parents.
  2. The woman had already identified the difference and animosity between Jews and Samaritans (4:9).
    1. She did not use the plural first person pronoun to mean Jesus and her – but her nation and her.
    2. John would later record that Jesus talking to this woman caused marvel in the apostles (4:27).
    3. Jews and Samaritans hated each other for national and religious differences (Lu 10:33; Jn 8:48).
    4. If Jesus criticized her religion, He would condemn her nation, 450-year-old traditions, her religious leaders and parents, and her own relationship and worship to God. And He did just that!
  3. The Samaritans were half-breeds created by amalgamation with pagan Assyrians (II Kings 17:1-41).
    1. Assyria started by moving Israelites from Samaria to cities in Assyria (17:6), which we assume was only part of the population of Israel (II Chron 34:9; etc.), and we also assume affinity.
    2. The king of Assyria also brought other men from Assyria and placed them in Israel (17:24), and this initial wave of immigrants was assisted or added to by the Assyrian Asnappar (Ezra 4:9-10).
    3. Their religion started as a perverse mixture of idolatry and Jehovah worship (17:25-33), which God honored a little by calling off the lions; for obeying any truth has value (I Kgs 21:27-29).
    4. Josiah destroyed much of their pagan worship in his revival of Jehovah’s religion (II Chr 34:6-7).
    5. But they kept on in some degree to their horrible religious confusion by serving both (17:34-41).
    6. They appealed to this worship of Jehovah over two hundred years later to Zerubbabel (Ezra 4:2).
    7. Rejected, they antagonized Judah by hindering the temple’s rebuilding (Ezr 4:1-10; Neh 4:1-23).
    8. A son-in-law of Sanballat was rejected by Nehemiah from the Jewish priesthood (Neh 13:28).
    9. Josephus indicates a temple on Mt. Gerizim was built to compete with Jerusalem and its temple, and it was here these half-breeds followed a Mosaic form of worship, as a few do to this day!
    10. Those rejected from Jerusalem and temple worship for heresy or political reasons could find easy refuge and a similar religion just 30 miles away on Mt. Gerizim.
    11. These imposters were racially corrupt (Assyrians) and religiously corrupt (perversion of Moses).
    12. John Hyrcanus (son of Simon Maccabees) destroyed this temple in 129 B.C., but they still saw the mount as holy, praying toward it as Solomon had established for his temple (I Kgs 8:35-36).
  4. The Samaritans were bold to claim to be the true worshippers of God from their Israelite fathers.
    1. They claimed themselves to be the proper descendants of the tribes of Manasseh and Ephraim.
    2. By appealing to certain Biblical accounts, some altered in their Samaritan Pentateuch to support their claims, they tried to establish themselves as the true, ancient worshippers of Jehovah.

Worshipped in this mountain.

  1. Without a look into religious history, her reference to a mountain would be lost.
    1. The demonstrative adjective this requires it to be a mountain of Samaria.
    2. It cannot be Mt. Sinai or Mt. Zion for clear geographical and travel reasons.
    3. History recorded in the Maccabees and by Josephus tell us about Gerizim.
    4. Some do not like to read or research, so they are left ignorant at this point.
  2. As described under our fathers, the Samaritans worshipped Jehovah by Mosaic code on Gerizim.
    1. They had had a good enough temple there, where they kept Passovers and other Jewish feasts.
    2. Even after John Hyrcanus destroyed it in 129 B.C., they still worshipped toward the mountain.
    3. Abraham and Jacob had clearly worshipped in these parts (Genesis 12:6-7; 33:20; John 4:5-6).
  3. God chose Mount Gerizim for proclaiming God’s blessings (Deut 11:29; 27:12; Josh 8:33: Jdgs 9:7).
  4. She referred to it as this mountain, for they were very near it at Sychar, which is Shechem (4:5-7).
    1. She was not a woman of the city of Samaria, eight miles distant, but of the country of Samaria.
    2. She was not using this demonstrative pronoun to refer to Mount Zion at a distance of 30 miles.
    3. She was not using this demonstrative pronoun to refer to Mount Sinai at a distance of 300 miles.
  5. Some religions put foolish worth in a location or place, like Islam with Mecca.
    1. Muslims pray toward Mecca for there is the Kaaba meteorite they worship.
    2. Hindus pilgrimage to the Ganges to bathe in the filthiest water on earth.
    3. The Mormons think they have something special in Salt Lake City, Utah.
    4. Christians often take Holy Land tours, thinking there is residual value there.
  6. Mount Zion at Jerusalem was the place to pray toward after Solomon’s dedication, even when the temple had been destroyed (I Kgs 8:35-36; Da 6:10).

And ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.

  1. This woman of Sychar reduced their religious differences to tradition and opinion, not scripture.
  2. The Jews had a different opinion of Mount Gerizim, their priests, and their aping of Moses’ law.
  3. Today the acceptable response by many to this would be that each man’s opinion is okay in religion.
  4. Or, we can agree to disagree, some say; but God has already disagreed, which annuls any agreement.
  5. We should never let religious matters become us against them … but rather, What saith the Lord?
  6. Jerusalem is clearly where God placed His worship and where both temples were built for Jehovah.
  7. From the beginning of Israel, Moses had identified God’s chosen place (Deut 12:5-11; I Kings 9:3).
  8. Why did the Jews say Jerusalem was it? Because God had told them so (II Chron 6:6; Ps 132:13).
  9. PowerPoint slides elaborating on text … Spirit and Truth.

21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father.

Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh.

  1. All the answers, definitions, and doctrines of our religion come from the Founder and Head of it.
  2. She thought him to be only a prophet, but even a mere prophet was better than anything on Gerizim!
  3. By these words and the context immediately following, we know He introduced a significant event.
  4. At a future date, worship would be so changed that it would not occur rightly in either city or mount.
    1. Jesus shortly modified the time by indicating the change had started (4:23).
    2. For approximately 40 years the two covenants ran side by side until 70 A.D.
  5. When Jesus says to believe Him, it is our wisdom to humble ourselves to the full sense of His words.
  6. Do you believe Him? He is God’s Son. He is I AM THAT I AM in the flesh.
    1. If you do not believe Him, you shall die in your sins, as He said (John 8:24).
    2. Do you believe everything He taught about adultery, divorce, the Spirit, etc.?

When ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem.

  1. The Samaritans were ignorant about worshipping Jehovah rightly, but He waited His timing (4:22).
  2. He wisely chose for the sake of argument at this stage to allow her assumption of Samaritan worship, but He also prophesied an incredible thing – the worship of Jehovah would leave Jerusalem!
  3. The New Testament of Jesus Christ does not have a place on earth – its religion is of different sort.
    1. Jesus introduced her to a time of reformation and the doing away of Moses’ worship (Heb 9:10).
    2. The worship of God would take place throughout the earth in the local churches of Jesus Christ.
    3. Though men were repenting and being baptized in the gospel, temple worship also continued.
    4. For forty years, from about 30 A.D. to 70 A.D., the two religious dispensations ran side-by-side.
    5. The longstanding difference between Jews and Samaritans would end – both would be replaced!
  4. Paul was instrumental changing the form of worship for the converted Gentiles.
    1. He told them to follow him as he followed Jesus (I Cor 11:1; II Tim 2:2).
    2. Jesus was a minister to the circumcision or Jews (Matt 15:24; Rom 15:8).
    3. Paul was a minister to the uncircumcision or Gentiles (Ro 11:13; 15:16-19).
    4. The time of reformation is the 40 years from John to destruction in 70 A.D.
    5. Consider these example changes: circumcision, baptism, Pharisees, Sabbath, footwashing, divorce, church, Israel, Passover, new covenant, swearing, great commission, signs for believers, ministerial offices, and the Spirit.
    6. For details of Paul or Jesus … Jesus or Paul? 

Worship the Father.

  1. This is Jehovah, whom Jesus and the New Testament constantly refer to as Father in many senses.
  2. The Samaritans had their Pentateuch, the five books of Moses, assuming they worshipped Jehovah.
  3. Almighty God chooses the place and the way of His worship, and variations are totally unacceptable.

22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.

Ye worship ye know not what.

  1. Jesus our Lord was not taught political correctness, so He boldly and simply stated the plain truth.
    1. He gently and slowly increased His intensity and dogmatism about the truth.
    2. The Samaritans were closer to the truth than the religions of the world today.
  2. The Samaritans were religious fools, aping Jerusalem without any authority from heaven to do so.
    1. Their temple, their priesthood, their rites, their sacrifices were nothing but nationalistic vanity.
    2. He said this for they did not worship by God’s word, but rather by human tradition (Is 8:20).
    3. They did not known what they worshipped –Jehovah’s worship must be by the written scriptures.
    4. By different arguments, their worship was actually of the devil, the father of lies (I Cor 10:20).

We know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.

  1. He admitted the Jews at least were correct in their worship, for they had the written oracles of God.
  2. The truth of the Scriptures and all they contain to know God and worship was theirs (Ps 147:19-20).
  3. Salvation was wrapped up from a national perspective in God’s covenant dealings with the Jews.
  4. Jesus obeyed the Law of Moses and more from the scriptures throughout His life on earth as a Jew.
  5. It is crucial that we know what and how we worship, and that only by the Bible.

23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

But the hour cometh, and now is.

  1. Jesus returned to His prophecy of a future change, but He declared here that it had already started.
  2. Further changes would occur; Jerusalem worship would end; but John started it all (Luke 16:16).
  3. The disjunctive but indicates that His previous statement about Jewish worship is to be superseded.

When the true worshippers.

  1. If there are true worshippers, then there are false worshippers, and it behooves us to be the former.
  2. All the reasons men assume and give to validate their worship is entirely worthless outside scripture.
  3. Samaritans were imposters – not true worshippers; the Jews were true worshippers under the O.T.
  4. But a religious reformation was taking place that would soon condemn both Samaritans and Jews.

Shall worship the Father.

  1. Jehovah of Moses, the God of Israel, would be as clearly worshipped, but it would be very different.
  2. Though not on Gerizim or Zion, and though not in Jerusalem, the LORD God would be worshipped.
  3. The change – correcting worship at Gerizim and in Jerusalem was summarized as spirit and truth.
  4. Paul described the reverent and fearful worship of Jehovah as the object of the N.T. (Heb 12:28-29).

In spirit.

  1. This identifying mark of true worship changed the outward ceremony and ritual of Jewish worship.
  2. Old Testament worship occurred in a place with external ordinances of sensual perception and duty e.g. altar, miters, candlesticks, Ark of the Covenant, incense, showbread, laver, curtains, etc., etc.
  3. This is not the Holy Spirit at all; for the Holy Spirit you must go elsewhere in scripture (Rom 8:9).
  4. This word describes the internal, spiritual, heart and mind worship of the New Testament protocol.
  5. A great example of this change is in the music – playing or singing (Col 3:16).
  6. More about instruments.

And in truth.

  1. This identifying mark of true worship condemned the manmade lie of the Samaritan worship.
  2. It also condemned the distortion and hypocrisy of the Jews that Jesus took apart (Matthew 5-7).
  3. There is a right and wrong for every moral issue, especially the acceptable worship of Jehovah.
  4. Truth is defined, described, and limited by written revelation only (Deut 5:32; 12:32; Matt 28:20).

For the Father seeketh such to worship him.

  1. God the Father, in His plan for worship, was through with the Jewish system of external religion.
  2. The God of Israel, never had any use for the blasphemous mimicking of Jerusalem on Gerizim.
  3. That God seeks true worshippers, and the identity of the worship is given, should greatly excite us.
  4. This verse is simply describing the change from the Old to New Testament form of worship.
  5. Jesus by these words introduced the earthshaking change in worship (Hag 2:6-9; Heb 12:26-29).

24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

God is a Spirit.

  1. God is not corporeal being with a body or form of anything at all – He is an eternal, invisible Spirit.
  2. It is a horrible shame that so many want some kind of image, object, or picture in order to worship.
  3. Because God is an invisible Spirit, all the outward and visible ceremonies of Moses missed the mark.
  4. The invisible Spirit that created the worlds cannot be worshipped in a temple made by human hands.

And they that worship him must worship him in spirit.

  1. Because God is an invisible spirit, the purest and best form of worship is that involving your spirit.
  2. External ceremonies and rituals of altars, incense, gold, candles, and such like do not match Him.
  3. God was never properly worshipped with animal blood, temples of stone, and carnal ordinances.
  4. We worship God acceptably in spirit by directing our inner affections and thoughts toward Him.
  5. For this reason the apostolic direction for music was for a melody from our hearts, not an instrument.

And in truth.

  1. We must determine every aspect of our worship by the scriptures without regard for anything else, as we have taught and emphasized from the beginning (Ps 119:128; II Tim 3:16-17; Jude 1:3; etc.).
  2. He has revealed His will for New Testament worship by the scriptures of the apostles for us to obey, and we must be as dogmatic about them as Jesus was against this sincere woman of Samaria.
  3. We must oppose any alteration, invention, or modification of the New Testament scriptures, no matter how esteemed those making the changes or how others may perceive the change.
  4. It does not matter how ancient or sincere worshippers are – it is the word of God only that counts.
  5. PowerPoint slides elaborating on text … Spirit and Truth.

25 The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.

The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh.

  1. The Samaritan woman responded to a fabulous revelation Jesus had given her.
    1. Her response shows she did not know Him or the real issues of true religion.
    2. She continued forward with her understanding of things, now of Messiah.
    3. After the revelation Jesus gave of truth and worship, she might have asked.
  2. There is little reason to wonder how the Samaritan woman knew about Messiah.
    1. Taught even by false priests, they knew Messiah was key in Jewish religion.
    2. Claiming to be descendants of Jacob (4:12), they would have known of Him.
    3. They claimed the Pentateuch (Gen 3:15; 22:15-18; 49:10; Deut 18:15-19).
    4. If they knew any other scriptures, there were many more references to Him.
    5. She might easily have been more Jewish than Assyrian by her parentage.
    6. Surrounded by Jews near and farther, she would have heard of Messiah.
    7. Knowing Jesus was a Jew, she should have invoked knowledge of Messiah.
  3. All the O.T. refers to Messiah, but only Daniel used this specific title for Him.
    1. He used it twice in the timed prophecy of the seventy weeks (Dan 9:24-27).
    2. The Hebrew variation of the title is used twice in the N.T. (John 1:41; 4:25).
  4. Observe her personal claim to know about Messiah coming, not just her nation.
    1. She had referred to her fathers several times before for her faith (4:12,20).
    2. A dissolute life due to false religion does not prove a total lack of real faith.
    3. It matters little, and only indirectly, if your parents believe on Jesus Christ.

Which is called Christ.

  1. Should we assume she gave Jesus a translation lesson from Hebrew to Greek?
    1. Should we assume Andrew gave the same lesson to his brother Peter (1:41)?
    2. We assume four words, which is called Christ, are John’s words to readers.
  2. Do you totally understand the full name of our Lord Jesus Christ of Nazareth?
    1. Jesus, His personal name assigned from heaven, is Jehoshua in Hebrew, and it means Jehovah is Salvation (Matt 1:21; Luke 1:31).
    2. Jesus of Nazareth, including His home, distinguishes Him from other Joshuas (Mat 2:23; 21:11; Luke 2:4; Jn 1:45-46; 18:7; 19:19; Ac 22:8; 24:5).
    3. Christ is His title, from the Hebrew Messiah, which means the anointed one of God (Ps 45:7; 89:20; Isaiah 61:1; Dan 9:24; Ac 10:38; Heb 1:9; Jn 3:34).
    4. Lord is His position over all as Ruler and Master and Head (Ps 110:1; Jer 23:6; Lu 2:11; Jn 13:13; Ac 2:36; 10:36; I Cor 12:3; 15:47; Col 2:10).
    5. Enjoy Paul’s summary by inspiration of how the names apply (Phil 2:9-11).
    6. He is Son of God over the angels and holy child of God’s fatherly love without infancy or disrespect (Luke 1:35; Rom 1:4; Heb 1:5; Act 4:27,30).

When he is come, he will tell us all things.

  1. This is correct knowledge of Messiah, prophesied by Moses (Deut 18:15-19).
    1. He had wisdom and understanding like no other for teaching (Isaiah 11:1-5).
    2. Jesus brought the truth of God and assigned it (Matt 28:18-20; Rom 14:8-9).
    3. Jews that rejected His word were destroyed (Acts 3:22-23; 2:40; Mat 21:44).
    4. He taught with power not heard before, correcting their errors (Mat 7:28-29).
  2. We have the complete revelation of God, the N.T. being from Messiah Christ.
    1. There is in scripture everything to make ministers perfect (II Tim 3:16-17).
    2. We are to preach it, not anything else, including any visions (II Tim 4:1-4).
    3. It is more sure than God’s voice from heaven with witnesses (II Pe 1:16-21).
  3. Jesus came not only for the Jews but also for Gentiles (Isaiah 2:1-3; 11:1-5,9).
    1. Shiloh gathered Jews and Gentiles together, like Jesus (Ge 49:10; Jn 10:16).
    2. He made a new covenant with Israel unlike the OT covenant (Jer 31:31-34).

26 Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.

Jesus saith unto her.

  1. Our Lord led this woman from a drink to her mention of Messiah called Christ.
  2. She delightfully played into His hands like the man born blind (John 9:35-38).
  3. He had patiently waited to lead her along, and we should learn similar patience.

I that speak unto thee am he.

  1. Jesus at other times told men not to reveal Him as Christ (Matt 16:20; Lu 9:21).
    1. Until it was His time, as in 4:1-3 here, Jesus avoided provoking the Jews.
    2. The Jews would have their time, by Satan’s influence, but not until the time.
    3. While among the Samaritans, there was less reason to withhold the gospel.
  2. Jesus at other times told men not to reveal Him as Christ (Matt 16:20; Lu 9:21).
    1. He withholds or grants repentance, truth, or powerful gifts to whom He will.
    2. He clearly stated the sovereign privilege of truth (Matt 11:25-27; 13:10-11).
    3. If you know Jesus the Son of God, believe on Him, love Him, and obey Him, these are gifts of God’s sovereign grace by power of the Holy Ghost.
  3. While you enjoy this encounter with Jesus, He has done so to you that believe!
    1. Can you do better than this woman? Maybe like Saul of Tarsus (Acts 9:4-6)?
    2. However, can you also do like this woman? Go and tell others (Jn 1:41-45)?

27 And upon this came his disciples, and marvelled that he talked with the woman: yet no man said, What seekest thou? or, Why talkest thou with her?

And upon this came his disciples.

  1. The apostles returned from buying food in town to see the personal encounter.
    1. Notice that the apostles did not arrive until the perfect moment of decision.
    2. With their presence, 13 men to 1 woman, she chose to tell her city of Him.
  2. Trust God’s providence that He will allow enough and no more than needed.
    1. Of course, you are responsible to use your wits and wisdom given by Him.
    2. Yet, also of course, He is able to overcome your inability or your stupidity.

And marvelled that he talked with the woman.

  1. It was unusual to their minds, for He being a Jew engaged a Samaritan (Jn 4:9).
  2. Furthermore, it was a two-way conversation – an exchange with the Samaritan.
  3. Furthermore, if they heard the final words, He told her what He often withheld.

Yet no man said, What seekest thou? or, Why talkest thou with her?

  1. Showing rare prudence at this time, they did not confront either her or Him.
  2. They could surely discern naturally that the exchange was sober and agreeable.
  3. We should have a similar submission to the word of God in spite of appearance.
    1. Scorners and skeptics read the Bible to find or criticize apparent difficulties.
    2. Believing Bible study gives God the benefit of doubts and creates options.

28 The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men,

The woman then left her waterpot.

  1. She came to the well to draw water, which would not be done unless necessary.
    1. To return without water would be to totally waste the trip relative to water.
    2. This simple calculation of wasting a trip did not cross her mind at this time.
  2. Her mind (and we can assume her heart) were greatly excited by meeting Jesus.
  3. How often have you dropped activities or lost opportunities to pursue the Lord?
    1. How important is it to you that you learn of God, His Son, and His gospel?
    2. Solomon wrote it financially as buying truth and not selling it (Prov 23:23).
    3. What will you give in exchange, or not give, for his soul (Matt 16:24-26)?
    4. He that will have wisdom will separate himself from distractions (Pr 18:1).
    5. Paul counted all things in his life loss and dung to win Christ (Phil 3:7-11).
    6. What will you sell in order to buy the truth of the kingdom (Matt 13:44-46)?

And went her way into the city.

  1. Note the priority – rather than keep such knowledge to herself – she shared it!
  2. She gave evidence of the same grace that was in Andrew and Philip (1:41,45).
  3. What excuses do you have for not excitedly telling others about Jesus Christ?

And saith to the men.

  1. She boldly approached the opposite sex (she was experienced) to declare Christ.
  2. It is not enough to pray – it is not enough to answer questions – go publish it!
  3. What did Jesus suggest for the Gadarene to do with his new life (Mk 5:18-20)?
  4. What did a healed leper do, though Jesus asked him not to do it (Mk 1:43-45)?

29 Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?

Come, see a man.

  1. Never forget Jesus Christ is a man – the Godman – as our Mediator (I Tim 2:5).
    1. We do not modify the deity of Jesus; neither do we destroy His humanity.
    2. Jesus is subordinate to God as the exalted Man Who saved us (I Cor 15:28).
    3. Do not confuse Him in the Trinity or lose Him in space as a divine concept.
  2. God chose in His great drama to destroy the devil by the seed of the woman.
  3. Seed of the Woman.

Which told me all things that ever I did.

  1. Rather than repeat His confession to her, she stated the evidence for the matter.
    1. What a person might claim about himself or another is not evidence of truth.
    2. But details Jesus told about her past while not knowing her was evidence.
  2. We do not know if there was more to the exchange or not, but enough was said.
  3. There are certain things to prove a supernatural power or a supernatural person.
    1. Fulfilled prophecy is certainly one of them, as Isaiah chapters 40-48 show.
    2. Knowledge of things beyond human experience are also proof, as used here.

Is not this the Christ?

  1. She asked a question of her city’s men based on the evidence of His knowledge.
    1. She knew His precise knowledge of her legal and intimate life was by God.
    2. She knew He was a Jew and a prophet (things stated in John’s record here).
    3. When she raised the prophecy and ability of Christ, He claimed to be Him.
    4. Is a difference between Messiah and Christ by two languages here (4:25)?
  2. There is no reason to think they were ignorant of the time of Messiah’s coming.
    1. Jews were in expectation (Luke 2:38; 3:15), so the Samaritans surely heard.
    2. The woman had certain knowledge of Messiah, maybe even timing (4:25).
  3. The apostles had the good privilege of declaring Jesus to be Christ to the world.
    1. Luke recorded Paul’s method of evangelism at Thessalonica (Acts 17:1-3).
    2. And Apollos after his conversion mightily convinced the Jews (Acts 18:28).
    3. John made this very point of doctrine extremely important (I John 2:22; 5:1).
  4. We must and should believe that Jesus of Nazareth is fully the Bible’s Messiah.

30 Then they went out of the city, and came unto him.

Then they went out of the city.

  1. By what John wrote, or she said more, the men were convinced to check it out.
  2. Of course, Jesus knew this whole event was for the Samaritan city of Sychar.
  3. When you hear the truth about something like God’s Son, it is time to act now.

And came unto him.

  1. They came to see for themselves if this stranger, Jesus, was indeed the Christ.
  2. These people were so ripe and the woman’s testimony so good, they believed.
  3. They came to Jesus believing, so they asked Him to stay with them (4:39-40).
  4. Compare this to the horrible response of the city of the Gadarene (Mk 5:14-17).

31 In the mean while his disciples prayed him, saying, Master, eat.

In the mean while his disciples prayed him.

  1. John’s record of the events now jumps back to the apostles about food (4:27).
  2. There are two events occurring simultaneously – conversion and evangelism.
    1. Jesus and the woman of Samaria had an exchange for the souls of her city.
    2. Jesus needed to teach the disciples early in His ministry about evangelism.

Saying, Master, eat.

  1. By His human nature, Jesus needed food and water for His body (4:7; 19:28).
  2. The disciples had earlier gone into town to purchase food for the group (4:8).
  3. This is kind and wise enough, simply considered, but Jesus used it to teach.

32 But he said unto them, I have meat to eat that ye know not of.

But he said unto them.

  1. As Jesus was skilled to do, He chose their request to introduce their lesson.
  2. Note how He used water with the woman … He will use harvest timing shortly.
  3. We may think this a little strange, but Jesus used any event He could for truth.

I have meat to eat that ye know not of.

  1. They went into town to buy meat (or food), and now He suggests hidden food.
  2. By this metaphor, Jesus will give them a lesson about the priority of duties.
  3. Jesus had a sense of duty, priority, and urgency for things far beyond eating.

33 Therefore said the disciples one to another, Hath any man brought him ought to eat?

Therefore said the disciples one to another.

  1. They were no better initially getting His lessons than Nicodemus or the woman.
  2. Their first response was the natural one, which is not wise with spiritual truth.
  3. Many foolishly interpret the Bible too often literally with a carnal dictionary.

Hath any man brought him ought to eat.

  1. Instead of asking Jesus what He meant, they think naturally about food to eat.
  2. It is usually wiser to ask for clarification rather than respond with first thoughts.
  3. Rather than always interpret literally in a straitjacket, be open to spiritual truth.

34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.

Jesus saith unto them.

  1. Note the Lord’s great patience to not respond with ridicule, as we might have.
  2. Instead, as with Nicodemus and the woman, He will lead them with a metaphor.

My meat is to do the will of him that sent me.

  1. Jesus used the word meat for His metaphor, as He used water with the woman.
    1. He used a natural object or thing to represent or symbolize a spiritual duty.
    2. Nicodemus and a woman were confused; other Jews will murmur (6:41,52).
  2. Jesus had a sense of duty, priority, and urgency for things far beyond eating.
    1. Doing the will of God was more important to Jesus than eating their food.
    2. He had declared a similar strong focus to His parents at only 12 (Luke 2:49).
    3. Embrace the lesson Jesus needed to teach right then and avoid any extremes.
    4. Jesus did not even indirectly condemn them for going into town for food.
    5. Jesus knew full well that without food He would not be able to do anything.
    6. He was convicted to please God and to evangelize the approaching crowd.
    7. Praise God that He was no less committed or convicted to save your soul.
  3. If we are saved with a new nature and truly know God, we will be very similar.
    1. When we look at the life of Saul of Tarsus, the change and duty were drastic.
    2. Consider how Job and David valued the words of God (Job 23:12; Ps 19:10).
    3. We should eagerly and passionately pursue God’s will for us from the Bible.
    4. The particular will here is primarily ministerial in nature for saving the lost.
    5. But His will extends to every part of our lives, and it should trump all else.
    6. When an opportunity arises to do spiritual good, nothing else should tempt.
  4. For related sermon, Love of a Soul.

And to finish his work.

  1. Anyone, and most everyone, start jobs they never finish, but not the Lord Jesus!
    1. Solomon and Jehu started well, but never finished the work He gave them.
    2. On Calvary’s cross He finished all the Father had assigned to Him (19:30).
  2. Your life – your race from God – is by your finish (I Cor 9:24-27; Heb 12:1-2).
    1. Paul counted all things accomplished earlier in his life both loss and dung.
    2. He forgot those things behind, no matter how good, to press for the finish.
    3. No one cares how you ran lap two in a four-lap race. The finish line counts!
  3. Slides for Running Your Race.

35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.

Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest.

  1. Jesus moved from one metaphor (meat) to a second (harvest) for another lesson.
  2. There is no profit studying or guessing harvest timing. Instead, grasp the lesson.
  3. Whether at planting or then, the usual expression was four months to harvest.
  4. Planting is always done with harvest and reaping profits of agriculture in mind.
    1. Farming is slow, in that it takes months for seeds to germinate, sprout, grow.
    2. Even with harvest far off, there is expectant joy at what a season will bring.
  5. The Lord’s main point here is the usual long time delay from sowing to reaping.
    1. True in agriculture, it is also very true in evangelism from sowing to reaping.
    2. Jesus wanted them to see how time with the woman had yielded fast results.
    3. They did not need to check Sychar on a later trip, for there was work now.

Behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields.

  1. Continuing the metaphor, Jesus asked them to check out the field, but not grain!
  2. A crowd came from Sychar to Jacob’s well to check out the woman’s Christ!
  3. Jesus knew this harvest would take little work – gospel seed sown had grown.
  4. Do you look around? Do you sow gospel seed to others? Do you check growth?

For they are white already to harvest.

  1. Fields here were the Samaritans of Sychar, and they were ready for conversion.
  2. Though He had sown the gospel only minutes earlier, a crowd came for more.
  3. Over the next two days many of the Samaritans were baptized by faith in Jesus.

36 And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together.

And he that reapeth receiveth wages.

  1. Consider well the layers of lessons that Jesus laid on His apostles at this time.
    1. He taught prioritization for doing His will, especially as ministers (4:31-34).
    2. He taught observation of looking for results, which came fast here (4:35).
    3. He taught compensation for such a good work, both here and later (4:36).
    4. He taught cooperation for sowers and reapers to work together (4:36-38).
  2. Farming has significant rewards for the investment of seed and then patience.
    1. Reaping a harvest provided a mountain of produce to reward the reaper.
    2. But there is a reward as well for those reaping the harvest of the gospel.
    3. The issue here was not a seasonal crop, but rather conversion of God’s elect.
  3. Jesus encouraged His apostles to the work of evangelism early in His ministry.
    1. He had initially called them to be fishers of men, and this lesson was similar.
    2. Encouragement can be of all kinds; this is not the duty but rather the reward.
  4. Ministers receive rewards of several kinds both here in this life and in heaven.
    1. God will take care of His preachers providentially for preaching His word.
    2. God requires those that hear to give hire (Luke 10:7; I Cor 9:14; I Tim 5:18).
    3. They rejoice with converts at the joy of conversion (II Tim 1:12; Pr 11:30).
    4. They have the blessing to know they have preserved a church (I Tim 4:16).
    5. They get wages of eternal life and a crown of glory (II Tim 4:7-8; I Pet 5:4).
    6. They also have pleasure in heaven by good Christian lives (Phil 2:16; etc.).

And gathereth fruit unto life eternal.

  1. This phrase may be understood in at least two different ways for our wisdom.
    1. It is not uncommon in scripture for a word, phrase, or sentence to be broad.
    2. We may call it inspired ambiguity or similar for width of sense (Ps 119:96).
  2. Faithful ministers that convert souls are rewarded with eternal life in heaven.
    1. Daniel prophesied of the apostles shining as stars forever and ever (Da 12:3).
    2. When Paul reviewed his ministerial labors, he saw eternal life (II Ti 4:7-8).
    3. Jesus told apostles thrilled about ministry of the book of life (Luke 10:20).
    4. There is a crown of glory that does not fade for faithful ministers (I Pet 5:4).
    5. Paul used a future judgment for reward of faithful ministers (I Cor 3:12-17).
    6. Some ministers may see little fruit in this life, but they get eternal life later.
  3. Faithful ministers that convert souls help the elect on their way to eternal life.
    1. What a privilege to tell the elect of God’s grace and future glory (II Ti 2:10)!
    2. Assurance of eternal life is a gift laid hold and pointed out (I Tim 6:12,19).
    3. There is a reward to see God’s elect believe unto eternal life (Rom 1:11-17).
  4. There is no doctrinal way in which the apostles added a single soul to heaven.
    1. Jesus’ success was limited to God’s work (Jn 6:37-40,44; 8:47; 10:26-29).
    2. Paul’s success was limited the same (Ac 13:48; I Cor 1:17-31; 2:1-16; etc.).
    3. Eternal life is an unconditional gift by the obedience of One (Rom 5:12-19).
    4. The Arminian idea can nearly be used to excuse every soul sent to hell, since they are there due to ministerial and/or member carnality and slothfulness.
    5. Preachers only have a role in salvation’s practical phase – conversion (Rom 1:13-17; I Cor 15:2; II Cor 5:18-21; I Tim 4:16; II Tim 2:10; Jas 5:19-20).
    6. Five phases.
    7. For Why Preach the Gospel? 

That both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together.

  1. Common to metaphors and parables, you must identify the transferred sense.
    1. If a man sows a field and another reaps the field, both men rejoice in harvest.
    2. There must be appreciation and cooperation for combined efforts and results.
    3. Those that plant the gospel and those that gather in souls celebrate together.
  2. God gives all increase, no matter a man’s role; results are the key (I Cor 3:4-9).
    1. Paul knew a reward now here seeing souls converted (Phil 4:1; I Thess 3:9).
    2. He knew a reward comes later when meeting Christ (I Thes 2:19; Re 22:12).

37 And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth.

And herein is that saying true.

  1. The herein of Jesus’ lesson is the combination and cooperation of His ministers.
  2. The saying is simple – a person coming later may have benefit by earlier labor.
    1. This is true in the metaphor when reapers harvest a crop sown by others.
    2. This saying cannot be found directly in the Bible, especially for evangelism.
    3. It is assumed to be a proverbial saying, like that about weather (Mat 16:1-3).
    4. Enemies may eat the crop sown by another (Jos 24:13; Le 26:16; Mic 6:15).
    5. No matter the origin or use of the saying, a true application is in evangelism.
    6. All ministers should rejoice in the glorious end result, not labor distribution.
  3. False teachers took advantage of Paul’s sowing at Corinth (II Cor 10:12-18).

One soweth, and another reapeth.

  1. Ministerial combination and cooperation is best seen at Corinth (I Cor 3:1-9).
    1. Paul started the church by planting gospel seed in that city (Acts 18:9-11).
    2. Aquila and Priscilla sent Apollos there with much effect (Acts 18:24-28).
  2. Ministerial combination may occur without cooperation and between strangers.
    1. One minister may sow the gospel seed and never see results in some fields.
    2. Another man may come along later and reap a harvest from that earlier seed.
  3. Jesus’ lesson is a general rule of ministry, but was there a specific case at hand?
    1. Jesus had perfectly sown gospel seed to the woman with the apostles gone.
    2. Now the apostles got to be the reapers of the crowd brought by the woman.

38 I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.

I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour.

  1. Past tense sent must refer to calling apostles to work of preaching the gospel.
    1. He called them to be fishers of men, as it is recorded that way (Matt 4:19).
    2. He charged them to preach the gospel, as recorded that way (Mark 3:14).
  2. There was expectation and waiting for the gospel of Christ (Luke 2:38; 3:15).
  3. Remember, they began their ministry baptizing more than the Baptist (4:1-2)!

Other men laboured.

  1. Prophets of the Old Testament planted much gospel seed by their prophecies.
  2. Faithful scribes communicated their word to the people waiting for the Christ.
  3. John the Baptist had been preaching in Judea for some time before the apostles.
  4. Jesus had been preaching and doing powerful miracles to enhance the gospel.

And ye are entered into their labours.

  1. The apostles came along with Jesus the Christ, and many were converted easily.
  2. They had the distinct advantage of reaping a harvest of seed sown by others.
  3. The apostles could rejoice in the reward to ministers and reward of conversions.
  4. Consider well the layers of lessons that Jesus laid on His apostles at this time.
    1. He taught prioritization for doing His will, especially as ministers (4:31-34).
    2. He taught observation of looking for results, which came fast here (4:35).
    3. He taught compensation for such a good work, both here and later (4:36).
    4. He taught cooperation for sowers and reapers to work together (4:36-38).

39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.

And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him.

  1. John wrote back and forth, from the woman, to the disciples, to the people, etc.
    1. We have not heard about the woman or men of the city since John 4:28-30.
    2. There was an aside about the apostles in 4:27 and then lessons in 4:31-38.
  2. Compare this good result at Sychar to the city of the Gadarene (Mark 5:14-17).
    1. These people believed Jesus for hearsay of a dissolute woman’s testimony.
    2. Those people rejected Jesus with a man fully healed and his devils cast out.
  3. Consider the terrific effect of a wise reprover upon an obedient ear (Pr 25:12).
    1. Jesus was the wise reprover sowing the gospel seed perfectly well to her.
    2. The woman was the obedient ear leaving her water pot to testify to others.
    3. The result was a crowd of Sychar already partially convinced and converted.
  4. Our use of the Internet may bear fruit in places and persons we know not at all.

For the saying of the woman,

  1. Their expectant knowledge of Messiah must have been satisfied by her report.
  2. Without direct gospel preaching yet, they were ripe for harvest – conversion.
  3. She wisely chose not to state His claim or testimony but rather His knowledge.

Which testified, He told me all that ever I did.

  1. The woman testified of Jesus Christ by describing the evidence calling for faith.
  2. As identified in 4:29 and its notes, John did not record her stating Jesus’ claim.
  3. She provided what carried the greatest weight at this point, supernatural power.

40 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days.

So when the Samaritans were come unto him.

  1. They came already partially or nearly convinced or converted Jesus was Christ.
  2. Because of their faith by her report (4:39), they asked Jesus to stay and teach.

They besought him that he would tarry with them.

  1. They were already so convicted and converted by her word that they believed.
  2. Compare this good result at Sychar to the city of the Gadarene (Mark 5:14-17).
    1. These people believed Jesus for hearsay of a dissolute woman’s testimony.
    2. Those people rejected Jesus with a man fully healed and his devils cast out.
  3. Compare results at Sychar to the Pharisees and the man born blind (Jn 9:13-34).
  4. Jesus’ response to their request showed His view of their faith and character.

And he abode there two days.

  1. For thirteen Jews to stay with these Samaritans like this was highly unusual.
  2. Compare this to treatment of Jews that believed on Him similarly (Jn 2:23-25).
  3. Compare this to treatment of Jews that believed on Him in chapters 6 and 8.
  4. Give thanks and praise that Jesus showed His love of other sheep (John 10:16).

41 And many more believed because of his own word;

And many more believed.

  1. These believers were in addition to the many believers by her word (Jn 4:39).
    1. Some believe more easily than others, like you do over Thomas (Jn 20:29).
    2. God prepared them by ordination and regeneration (Ac 13:48; I Co 2:14-16).
  2. Notice the success – many more, which means believers added to believers!
  3. Notice the success – no wonder Jesus said the fields were white unto harvest.

Because of his own word.

  1. Jesus took His opportunity to preach to them and convert them by the gospel.
  2. They had not been fully convinced by the woman, but they were by the Christ.
  3. His perfect doctrine and applying of O.T. scriptures combined for conversion.
  4. There is no mention made of any miracles in Sychar, and John was detailed.

42 And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.

And said unto the woman.

  1. The ones reluctant to commit to Jesus as Christ by her testimony looked her out.
  2. While not stated, they surely were very happy she had told them about Jesus.

Now we believe.

  1. True faith is by knowledge – it is not by feelings, guesses, hope, or a majority.
  2. There comes a time when each honest and sincere person must believe or deny.
  3. When confronted by Jesus and His doctrine, these reluctant ones believed Him.

Not because of thy saying.

  1. She had testified to her city that He was likely the Messiah of the Jews (4:29).
  2. She had provided evidence good enough for her and others of His divine gifts.
  3. But some were reluctant to believe her report without hearing Him themselves.

For we have heard him ourselves.

  1. For two days Jesus and the apostles stayed at this Samaritan city (Jn 4:40,43).
  2. He taught them during this time, for John identified faith by His word (4:41).
  3. What a difference in response by these Samaritans to Jews in chapters 6 and 8!
  4. Have you heard Him? Have you heard Jesus? By His Spirit and by His word?
  5. You should be like the Samaritan woman and bring others to hear about Jesus.

And know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.

  1. True faith is based on knowledge – it is not by mere feelings, guesses, or hope.
    1. Knowledge requires evidence or proof, or it is mere speculation or hope.
    2. The best evidence and proof is the Bible, which Paul preached (Acts 17:1-3).
    3. Jesus explained and taught enough, with twelve witnesses, to convince them.
  2. They were fully convinced by His preaching that Jesus of Nazareth was Christ.
    1. They had knowledge and likely expectation for Messiah of the Pentateuch.
    2. He likely taught as the Sermon on the Mount and opened the O.T. scriptures.
    3. Miracles are not written here, but the disciples could have confirmed many.
    4. These elect believed by God’s ordination and drawing (Jn 6:44; Acts 13:48).
  3. They were fully convinced by His preaching that Jesus would save His people.
    1. There is no reason to think He preached different to them than Nicodemus.
    2. There is no reason to think He preached different than the angel (Matt 1:21).
    3. They likely needed correction from an earthly Deliverer to a spiritual Savior.
    4. They likely needed explanation of Isaiah 53 as did the eunuch (Ac 8:26-37).
  4. Their intent by world can be no more than what Jesus would have taught them.
    1. He surely did not teach them unlimited atonement or universal redemption.
    2. He surely taught the doctrine He taught Jews (Jn 6:37-40; 10:26-29; 17:2).
    3. Therefore, world means no more than elect Jews and Gentiles in the world.
    4. Why would they use any other word? – world more clearly included them!
    5. Imagine how Jesus could have or would have explained Shiloh (Gen 49:10)!




Lessons from Jesus and the Woman of Samaria

  1. He must go through Samaria; He had an appointment to save one sinful woman.
    1. Jesus is the good shepherd and finds one sheep, one coin, and one prodigal.
    2. He saved Rahab and family from the city of Jericho among the Canaanites.
    3. In His genealogy are listed the sinners Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Bathsheba.
    4. He healed a fearful woman with an issue of blood 12 years that worsened.
    5. He cast seven devils out of a woman named Mary Magdalene and loved her.
    6. He discouraged a Canaanite woman before finally delivering her daughter.
    7. He forgave a sinful woman and defended her against Simon the Pharisee.
    8. He found and saved the wild Gadarene possessed and destroyed by devils.
    9. He twice sought out the man born blind and gave Him both sight and faith.
    10. He kindly healed a single leper in the midst of a crowd by touching him.
    11. He found, saved, and honored a short and sinful publican named Zacchaeus.
    12. He carried a poor beggar named Lazarus into the presence of God in heaven.
    13. He promised the thief on the cross eternal life though only serious at death.
    14. He sent Philip the evangelist to find and baptize the eunuch in the desert.
    15. He sent Peter to teach and baptize Cornelius the Gentile and his household.
    16. He met Saul of Tarsus on the road to Damascus to convert and ordain him.
    17. He sent Paul to find, teach, and baptize the Philippian jailor and his family.
    18. There is every reason for you to believe, trust, love, and serve Jesus Christ.
  2. Do you have the love for souls that Jesus had in the individual examples given?
    1. Will you pursue one soul though it may cost you effort, time, money, etc.?
    2. Will you gently pursue a sinner by kind encouragement like the Samaritan?
    3. Will you overlook some of their faults until they are converted and stronger?
    4. Will another soul be important enough for you to lose some life pleasures?
    5. For more about the love of a soul.
  3. Despise the evil excuses that many use to never have any fruit unto eternal life.
    1. You do not want to get involved?
    2. You will leave the matter to others?
    3. You do not know what to say or how to help?
    4. You have your own family to take care of?
    5. You will pray for them?


43 Now after two days he departed thence, and went into Galilee.

Now after two days he departed thence.

  1. Jesus spent two days preaching to the residents of Sychar and converting many.
  2. He left Sychar to continue His trip to Galilee to get away from Judea (Jn 4:1-4).

And went into Galilee.

  1. Galilee was an area surrounding the Sea of Galilee 70 miles north of Jerusalem.
    1. The Bible Sea of Galilee was and is about 13 miles long and 8 miles wide.
    2. Galilee had Nazareth, Cana, Magdala, Capernaum, Chorazin, Bethsaida, etc.
    3. Galilee was a district or region, not a city, so it can refer to an area formally.
  2. By John’s next explanation, we believe Jesus avoided His hometown Nazareth.

44 For Jesus himself testified, that a prophet hath no honour in his own country.

For Jesus himself testified.

  1. Jesus used a common idiom that meant prophets were honored other than home.
  2. The relation here explains why He went to Cana and not hometown Nazareth.
  3. Galilee was a district or region, not a city; it can refer to a large area formally.
  4. He had great results in Judea and Samaria, fulfilling the honor implied for Him.

That a prophet hath no honour in his own country.

  1. Our Lord’s fullest and usual statement is this way: A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house (Matt 13:57; Mark 6:4).
  2. His short version is this: No prophet is accepted in his own country (Luke 4:24).
  3. It means that prophets are better accepted in placed other than their hometowns.

45 Then when he was come into Galilee, the Galilaeans received him, having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the feast: for they also went unto the feast.

Then when he was come into Galilee.

  1. By the previous verses we understand He visited Galilee exclusive of Nazareth.
  2. It might be assumed He went to Nazareth, but the use of Galilee excluded it.
  3. He entered the district or area of Galilee with cities like Capernaum, Cana, etc.
  4. Galilee was a district or region, not a city; it can refer to a large area formally.

The Galilaeans received him.

  1. The people of the district – the cities other than Nazareth – received Him well.
  2. This is opposite how Nazareth treated Him and tried to kill Him (Luk 4:14-30).
  3. Yet we may think the faith of the Samaritans greater than these for no miracle.

Having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the feast.

  1. Before miracles in Galilee this trip, they already knew His power from Judea.
  2. John recorded Jesus cast out the moneychangers and did miracles (Jn 2:13-23).

For they also went unto the feast.

  1. The Passover was a huge event for the Jews, and Galileans went to Jerusalem.
  2. They should have embraced their King, for He later destroyed them at Passover.

46 So Jesus came again into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum.

So Jesus came again into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine.

  1. John introduced Jesus to us at Jordan, and then He went to Galilee (John 1:43).
  2. It was at Cana of Galilee Jesus turned water into wine at a wedding (Jn 2:1-11).

And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum.

  1. While at Cana of Galilee, a nobleman from Capernaum sought Him out at Cana.
  2. This nobleman could have been attached to Herod Antipas, tetrarch of Galilee.
    1. Nobleman. One of the nobility. Jesus used it for a kingdom (Luke 19:12).
    2. This man had servants, which the poor did not, as we read shortly (Jn 4:51).
    3. Some think he was Chuza, Herod’s steward named elsewhere (Luke 8:3).
    4. Some think he was Manaen, of Herod’s household elsewhere (Acts 13:1).
    5. Jerome called him Palatinus and said he was an officer of Herod’s palace.
    6. There is no way to prove any of these presumptions, and it does not matter.
  3. What we know is a father cared for a sick son and went to the only One to help!
    1. Though he was a nobleman, he could not buy the health of his own sick son.
    2. Though a nobleman, he humbled himself to beg help of Jesus the Nazarene.
    3. Where do you go for your children? You are a pitiful parent comparatively.

47 When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judaea into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the point of death.

When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judaea into Galilee, he went unto him.

  1. The reputation of Jesus’ power preceded Him into Galilee (Jn 4:45 cp Jn 2:23).
  2. He did ask Jesus to travel; he travelled to another city, a mountainous 15 miles.
  3. When you hear the privileges or the duties of following Jesus, what do you do?
  4. If you have a problem with a child, to whom do you go for help (Heb 4:15-16)?

And besought him that he would come down, and heal his son.

  1. He asked Jesus in person to travel down from altitude of Cana to Capernaum.
  2. He was confident Jesus could heal his son by Judean miracles or his faith.
  3. His faith may have been weaker than a centurion, but we allow (Matt 8:5-13).
  4. If you have a problem with a child, to whom do you go for help (Heb 4:15-16)?

For he was at the point of death.

  1. He was urgent for his son and could not wait for it was a life and death matter.
  2. Death is the wage of sin; there is little to nothing you can usually do about it.
  3. In all your efforts to preserve health and postpone death, prayer trumps all.

48 Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe.

Then said Jesus unto him.

  1. Jesus loved to convict, encourage, or provoke in various ways by His responses.
  2. Here Jesus draws forth the great affection and concern the father had for a son.
  3. Jesus spoke unto the father (singular), but his pronouns are plural for the Jews.
  4. Jews were obsessed with signs, which cost them (Mat 12:38-45; I Cor 1:22-24).

Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe.

  1. Jesus performed miracles and exalted them elsewhere (5:36; 10:25,38; 14:11).
  2. This man responded correctly; others did not respond in faith (Mat 12:39; 16:4).
  3. Jesus spoke unto the father (singular), but his pronouns are plural for the Jews.
  4. Jews were obsessed with signs, which cost them (Mat 12:38-45; I Cor 1:22-24).

49 The nobleman saith unto him, Sir, come down ere my child die.

The nobleman saith unto him.

  1. This man responded well by expressing explicit faith to save a son from death.
  2. He was not discouraged by the Lord’s rebuke of Jewish obsession for miracles.
  3. Recall a Canaanite woman begged for even crumbs from Jesus (Matt 15:21-28).

Sir, come down ere my child die.

  1. The father’s great love for his son had sent him to seek out Jesus at a distance.
  2. The father’s faith had no doubts or fears that Jesus could not do this miracle.
  3. He was not discouraged by the Lord’s rebuke of Jewish obsession for miracles.

50 Jesus saith unto him, Go thy way; thy son liveth. And the man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him, and he went his way.

Jesus saith unto him.

  1. The Lord left all lessons aside and encouraged him regarding his son’s health.
  2. Jesus was not quite so merciful to the woman of Canaan by continuing the tests.

Go thy way; thy son liveth.

  1. You do not need me to come to Capernaum and take precious time, he is fine!
  2. You may go back home and rejoice with your family and the son’s new health.

And the man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him.

  1. He believed before there was any evidence to believe … for seeing is believing?
  2. If he got home after 15 miles over the mountains, what recourse would he have?
  3. Do you believe the words of God and Jesus that are written down for your eyes?

And he went his way.

  1. He did not ask again for clarification, repetition, confirmation, or explanation.
  2. Do you trust the words of the true God without evidence or explanation? Amen!
  3. If others attack or question, or it seems like a contradiction, do you still believe?

51 And as he was now going down, his servants met him, and told him, saying, Thy son liveth.

And as he was now going down, his servants met him.

  1. While descending from Cana to Capernaum, his servants met him on the road.
  2. Jesus did not make him wait all the way to home … He sent messengers to him!
  3. The father already believed, but tokens for good from God are nice (Ps 86:17).

And told him, saying, Thy son liveth.

  1. The son was alive when he left (4:49), but now he was alive with good health.
  2. The fever had broken and left, so the lad was recovered from the fatal illness.
  3. If we extrapolate from our Lord’s others miracles, the son now had great health!

52 Then enquired he of them the hour when he began to amend. And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.

Then enquired he of them the hour when he began to amend.

  1. Do you love the details about God, Jesus Christ, salvation, and His scriptures?
  2. When we see clearly defined answers to prayer, they build faith and cause joy.
  3. Fulfilled prophecy.

And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.

  1. The seventh hour would be 1:00 in the afternoon, when Jesus spoke the word.
  2. At that very time, over the mountains and 15 miles away, the boy was healed.

53 So the father knew that it was at the same hour, in the which Jesus said unto him, Thy son liveth: and himself believed, and his whole house.

So the father knew that it was at the same hour, in the which Jesus said unto him.

  1. There is glory and pleasure to confirm details of God’s power and promises.
  2. We have many examples in the gospels of our Lord’s instantaneous healing.
  3. It is the word of the Lord Jesus Christ that can heal, save, or resurrect. Glory!
  4. What a Word Is This! 

Thy son liveth: and himself believed, and his whole house.

  1. He had already believed by reputation and by meeting Jesus, now more (4:50).
  2. While we do not know of the household previously, they were believers now.
  3. Who knows if the household included Chuza or Manaen? We cannot prove it.

54 This is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judaea into Galilee.

This is again the second miracle that Jesus did.

  1. This miracle of healing is to be compared to turning water into wine at Cana.
  2. The use of again here merely emphasizes the two miracles of Jesus in Galilee.
  3. There are two trips out of Judea into Galilee recorded by John (John 1:43; 4:3).
  4. If miracle two, this history is likely before Matt 4:12; Mark 1:14; Luke 4:14.

When he was come out of Judaea into Galilee.

  1. He twice came out of Judea into Galilee, and this was the second (1:43; 4:3).
  2. This event was occasioned by the Pharisees hearing of His popularity (4:1-2).