Summary: Retells the story of the Samaritan Woman with a stress on the advantages of God’s truth vs. Man’s
Over the past couple of weeks we’ve discussed the conflict between the world and God regarding truth. The world accepts truth only with the idea of its being flexible and subject to opinion or one’s point of view. The world adamantly rejects the very idea of "absolute truth" and ends up in moral confusion.
By contrast, God expects... no, He DEMANDS that we embrace the idea that there is truth - absolute truth. A truth that can only be found in Jesus Christ.
In the "Youth Worker’s Journal," Will Eisenhower tells of a typical experience he had as a counselor at a youth Bible camp: "It had been an exhausting day; the guys in my cabin were asleep, and I was dead to the world. Then there came a dim awareness: Ants were crawling all over my body. I was so tired, and sleep felt so good, that I actually resisted rousing myself. I knew that if I were roused even a little bit, I would have to acknowledge that my sleeping bag had become an ant freeway. I didn’t want to know the awful truth, so for at least several seconds I tried to fight it. At some deep level, I told myself that sleep was the reality and the ants were a dream."
God’s Truth can be like ants in our sleeping bag. His Truth attempts to rouse us out of our sleep and confront us with reality. Many people keep trying to ignore what God says and go back to the comfort of their sleepy lives. Waking up would mean that they have to face reality and see the truth about themselves. It would mean they’d have to change.
Jesus had just been in Jerusalem for the Jewish Passover and was headed home to Galilee when He stopped with His disciples at Jacob’s well to rest.
Jesus sent his disciples on into the village of Sychar for food while He remained there alone. Perhaps because Jesus often went off by Himself to be alone, His students had gotten used to seeing their Master withdraw to a quiet place to pray.
And it was a good place to be alone. The 6th hour was what we call noon. And in that country, noon was a very hot time of the day.
Cities of that day were built around wells and water sources. I’m told that women would often come down to these wells during the morning hours (while the day was still cool) and gather their water into jars while they visited and gossiped with the other women.
This well of Jacob’s, however, was out in the country and noon was not a time when women gathered for such tasks.
So, here was Jesus all by Himself - perhaps focusing on prayer - setting by the well. Then along comes a woman with a jar on her head. She’s a little surprised to see him. Because of the well’s location and the time of day it was, no one should have been there. But here is a rabbi standing beside the well she intends to use. She thinks: "What’s He doing there?"
But, more to the point - what is she doing there? Why didn’t she go get her water durning the morning hours at the well located in the town square? There, she could have gossiped and hobnobed with the village women. Why go way outside the city in the heat of the day to fill her jar? Had the city well gone dry? Had she run out of water and just felt this water would simply taste better?
Probably not. It’s a good possibility that she didn’t go in the morning to the town’s well to gossip with other women... because all the gossip would have been about her. She was the town fluzzie. The woman of loose standards & easy morals. Had she lived today, she’d have been a guest for Jerry Springer or Maury Povich.
She’d had 5 husbands and the man she was living with now wasn’t even hers. (It makes you wonder who’s husband this one had been). Every woman in town probably watched their own husbands VERY closely when this girl was near at hand. Putting it bluntly - she wasn’t well liked or respected.
Generally, she avoided talking to much of anybody in town, but this man posed no threat. Not only was he an outsider who wouldn’t know her reputation, but he was obviously also a Jewish Rabbi - those men never talked to a woman, much less a Samaritan half breed like her.
BUT, THEN - He talks. It’s a polite question "Will you give me something to drink?" It’s a polite question, but a shocking one - Jews just didn’t talk to Samaritans. And she says as much.