Summary: Jesus was tired from His journey. How perfectly human He was. John tells us, “The word was made flesh.” (John 1:14) Think of it! The eternal God, that created all things, left heaven, and came to earth, and now He is tired so He sets down to rest.
Harmony of the Gospels
(11) Samaritan Woman at Jacob’s Well
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. (John4:5)
Joseph had two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, that were born to him down in Egypt. They were the heads of two of the twelve tribes that made up the nation of Israel. In Joshua 24:32, we are told that the children of Israel brought the bones of Joseph up out of Egypt. They carried his bones for 40 years in the wilderness, because of a promise made to Joseph to bury his bones in the Promised Land. Why? Because he was expecting to be raised from the dead in that land. His bones were buried in a tomb, just south of the Samaritan city of Sychar. Jesus has arrived at that city to keep an appointment, made in heaven, with a certain woman. He will meet this woman at the city well. Mount Gerizem is northwest of the city, and the synagogue of the Samaritans is on the slope of Mount Gerizim.
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. (John 4:6)
The sixth hour, by Jewish time would be twelve noon.
Now this is an amazing thing. Jesus was tired from His journey. How perfectly human He was. John tells us, “The word was made flesh.” (John 1:14) Think of it! The eternal God, that created all things, left heaven, and came to earth, and now He is tired so He sets down to rest. “The word was made flesh and dwelt among us.” He went through Samaria and set down at a well, so that He might meet this woman of Samaria.
Then cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink. (John 4:7)
This woman is rude and immoral. Today, some would call her a “hussy”. However, Jesus is very gentle with her. He asks her for a favor. He is thirsty and asks her for a drink. The one, who is the Water of Life, asks her for water.
(For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.) (John4:8)
Jesus is alone. His disciples had gone into town to buy food. Now there was a Jewish prejudice, which considered Samaritan food unclean, even as swine’s flesh. Therefore, Jesus must have rejected that belief. Jesus said, “Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man. (Matthew 15:11)
Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, asketh drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with Samaritans. (John 4:9)
This woman has refused His request. She is rude and insolent. But Jesus knows how to deal with her. He doesn’t give her a lecture or offer some theological doctrine. He just appeals to her native curiosity and this creates an interest and a thirst.
Why was there this great animosity between the Samaritans and the Jews? It was because the Samaritans had the same ancestors as the Jews, but they had intermarried with people from the north, during the Asserian captivity of Israel in 721 BC. At that time, the Jews that were not taken captive were gathered to Samaria. In time they developed their own society and they even had a different place to worship. They worshipped at their synagogue on Mount Gerizim, instead of at Jerusalem. Jews treated Samaritans as low individuals and to make contact with them would make them unclean. And this attitude by the Jews, caused the Samaritans to hate them.
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. (John 4:10)
He does not respond to her impertanate attitude and He avoids the prejudice and hatred that she is pouring out. But He appeals to her curiosity, and her attitude immediately changes.
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? Art thou greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle? (John 4:11-12)
She now addresses Him as Sir, and that is a word that she omitted when her attitude was surly and impudent. From her comments, her thinking is clearly physical and involves the well she can touch and the water she can drink.