Summary: Jesus had one conversation with one woman that lead to a town coming to see who this man was. What can one conversation today lead to?
John 4 – Harvest Time! The Woman at the Well
Are we afraid to share our faith in Christ? Do we cringe at the thought of telling someone about Jesus? Does the word ‘evangelism’ strike fear in our innermost being? I know that’s a bit of a different introduction, but I want to pose those questions to all of us here today, and hopefully, give you some information that you can use to do just that, to share your faith.
How many farmers do we have here today? Or how many people grew up on or near a farm? Not a dairy farm, or a chicken ranch, I’m thinking of a farm where the farmer GROWS his crop. It could be wheat, barley, corn, or some other planted crop. Some basics in planting crops; from what I know anyway. First, you have to start with some good seed, right? No use putting something in the ground that’s not going to grow. You have to have good soil. Plants need all the right nutrients to grow up properly. You need sun, but not too much that it dries everything up. You need water, but not so much that it drowns the seed. And you need time. You’ve got to plant at the right time. Usually, you would plant crops in the (spring) and harvest in the (fall). In between, you’re weeding and whittling. I love images of the farmer sitting in his rocking chair on the porch, with his faithful dog at his side, sleeping, and he’s just rocking away with a knife and a piece of wood. Whittling a two-foot piece of oak into the best tooth-pick you ever saw!
The point is, it takes time for a plant to grow so it’s ready to harvest. You can’t plant a seed one day, and the next expect to see a field of ripe corn. (story of Jack & the Beanstalk aside). Unless, that is, we are talking about a spiritual harvest.
Let’s take a look at the Gospel of John, chapter 4. We’re going to read the account of Jesus talking with a Samaritan woman, and see what happens when Jesus plants a seed!
Jesus Talks With a Samaritan Woman
The Pharisees heard that Jesus was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John, although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples. When the Lord learned of this, he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee.
Now he had to go through Samaria. So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about the sixth hour.
When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?" (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)
The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)
Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."
"Sir," the woman said, "you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his flocks and herds?"
Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."
The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water."
He told her, "Go, call your husband and come back."
"I have no husband," she replied.
Jesus said to her, "You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true."
"Sir," the woman said, "I can see that you are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem."
Jesus declared, "Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth."