Summary: Even if we don’t sow there is a harvest to be reaped that others have planted.
February 20, 2005
Text: John 4:27-38
Subject: The Harvest
Title: Part 3 of the Preparing for the Harvest Series – The Harvest is Ready
As we go into our third week of the harvest series I want you to understand something. There is one specific reason why I am devoting so much time to this topic. It has eternal significance and consequences. Jesus thought that it was important enough that it was one of the last commands that He gave his disciples before He ascended into heaven. Not only is it important, I believe it is urgent. How urgent? Ask the nearly 200,000 Muslims, Hindus, and Buddhists who lost their lives on December 26, 2004. If they could speak from their watery graves they would tell you how they wish they had sought after Jesus before the wave came. It’s too late for them now. Can you imagine that in a matter of hours 200,000 people perished without Jesus?
Though we don’t hear about it much, there is a comparable disaster taking place in our country. Approximately the same number of Americans dies every month. If even 50% of America is born again (a number I sincerely question) that still leave 80 – 100 thousand going to hell every month in the good old USA. Picture this in your mind would you? You’re driving down Broadway in Quincy and you look out the window and see the entire population being dragged down into hell by demons, some fighting and screaming about being faithful church members and some going willingly because they think there is a party waiting for them. And that’s happening twice every month. Can you see how urgent it is that we share the gospel with the lost?
In our passage today we see that Jesus is pointing His disciples to the harvest. If you listen and put the things I tell you today into action, you can be a soul winner.
I. THE POWER OF THE WORD (27-30)
A. Questionable Practices. Vs 27, “7And at this point His disciples came, and they marveled that He talked with a woman…” Why would the disciples question Jesus motives? What seems to be the problem? 1) He was talking with a woman, in public, with no husband around. That’s unheard of. If there is no husband then what might they be talking about? 2) She was at the well with her water pot in the middle of the day. She not only was a woman, but she was one who chose to avoid the other women. She was a social outcast. 3) She was a Samaritan. In verse 9 the woman asks Jesus a question, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman? For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.” The Samaritans were considered to be impure Jews. They were the Jews of the northern kingdom who were taken into captivity by Assyria, and then placed back in their own country with others from other nations and religions. They worshiped God, but often they added pagan religious practices to their religion. Verse 27 continues, “yet no one said, “What do You seek?” or, “Why are You talking with her?” Knowing the nature of some of the disciples, don’t you think that they might have been asking themselves those questions? You know, Peter with the speak now - think later mentality and Judas who complained about Mary pouring oil on Jesus’ head. But they respected Him too much to ask those questions. Why? Because He had continually shown them His integrity and by now they knew there must have been a good explanation for the conversation. Proverbs 19:1, “Better is the poor who walks in his integrity than one who is perverse in his lips and is a fool.” It is so important for the Christian to maintain integrity in the community or with those with whom he associates. People need to know that you speak the truth.
B. Unquestionable Response. Verse 28, Here’s a woman that Jesus spent some time with telling her the words of life. She was a woman rejected by others. She lived a life of sin, and yet she still knew about religious things. She even knew about the Messiah. When the disciples show up the conversation ends, but not without a noticeable change in the woman. 1) She left behind her water pot. Water was her source of life and she left it behind with the One who said that He had water to give that if you drank you would never be thirsty again.2) She went into the city. She didn’t just go back to her home but out into the midst of the very people who looked down upon her. 3) She went to the men of the city. Some of these may have been former husbands. Even though it was improper for men to talk with women in public she initiated a conversation. Why? Because she had been affected by the words that Jesus spoke to her. “Come see a Man who told me all things I ever did… 4) She proclaimed Jesus. “Could this be the Christ?” A fair question don’t you think? That’s the question that the world needs to answer. Could Jesus be the Christ, the Son of God? It’s the question Paul brought before the Jews as he reasoned with them in the synagogues, “showing them in the scriptures that Jesus is the Christ.” It’s the question we need to be asking.