John 4

John 4 begins with a bit of a positioning battle.  “Now when Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John….he left Judea and departed  again for Galilee”.  There was some concern by John the Baptist’s followers that Jesus was baptizing more people than he was. Competition between groups goes way back – no wonder churches tend to compete for members today.  But Jesus leaves and avoids the controversy – He is not at all wrapped up in that discussion.


He goes to a well in Samaria and asks a Samaritan woman for a drink of water. She asks “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria”?  Jews didn’t associate with Samaritans at all, yet Jesus talks not only to this person of a different country, but a woman as well.  Both were not accepted practices in His day.  It was a simple conversation, that causes them to discuss ‘living water’.  “The water that I will give him will become  in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life”.  Jesus isn’t talking about water at all, but eternal life.  The woman asks “give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water”.

Jesus goes on to tell her about her life, and she perceives He is a prophet.  “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things”. She is beginning to put things together but Jesus tells here “I who speak to you am he”.  That was a life changing conversation.  She immediately goes into her town and tells everyone to “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ”?  It was, and Jesus opens the door to begin reaching others with the Good News.  He tells His disciples that “the fields are white for harvest”.

The harvest began as “Many Samaritans from that town believed in him because of  the woman’s testimony….many more believed because of his word”.  His public ministry has begun.  Jesus returns to Galilee and an official there comes to ask Him to heal his son.  Jesus tells him: “Go; your son will live”.  We see the official demonstrate his faith in what Christ had said. “The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him and went on his way”.  He didn’t continue and insist that Jesus go with him to his house.  He merely believed what Jesus said.

So what happens?  “As he was going down, his servants met him and told him that his son was recovering….The father knew that was the hour when Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” And he himself believed,  and all his household”.  His faith made the difference.  He went home believing, and at the very instant that he turned and believed, beginning his journey home, Jesus healed his son.  Not around the time – at that very hour.  Faith is a powerful thing.  Jesus wants to exhibit the outcome of faith in our lives!

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