John 4:1-26 Notes
Title: Living Water Leaping into Eternity: Jesus is the Messiah who is Solemnly is Doing this Miracle.
Purpose of John’s Gospel: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name (St. John 20:31)
4:1 Therefore, hen the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John 2(though Jesus Himself did not baptize, but His disciples), 3 He left Judea and departed again to Galilee. 4 But He needed to go through Samaria. Jesus is God. He knew what the Pharisees heard. Jesus did not hear what the Pharisees knew. Cana is in the larger area of Galilee where Jesus did His first miracle at a wedding (John 2).
5 So He came to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. 6 Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour. Sychar is Shechem located Northwest of Jerusalem. The sixth hour is high noon. Jesus is tired. Jesus is human. Jacob’s well has been there for a long time. Necessary for people and herds of animals. Animals drink a lot of water. The well was an underground spring rather than a place to collect rain water. This kind of well/spring was also known as living water because it kept bubbling up and kept people and large herds alive in desert like conditions.
7 A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” 8 For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. 9 Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans. All the details of an eye-witness account. Samaritans were syncretists. The held to some of the teaching of Moses but combined with pagan beliefs. This mostly occurred because of mixed marriages between Jews and pagans. Jesus’ request would sound to the Samaritan woman like the following does to us, ‘Excuse me ma’am. May I have a drink? I am exhausted from my travels in this heat.’ But her question is relevant. Jews and Samaritans didn’t mix.
10 Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” The text has already told you who God is (4:1 & 4:6) but it will be made more specific at the end of this passage. So, who is God? What is the gift Jesus is giving according to John 4:4?
11 The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? 12 Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?” Complete misunderstanding. Jesus was speaking of Himself and not another well.
13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water (Jacob’s well or our tap water) will thirst again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” Again, what is the gift?
15 The woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw.” Misunderstands again. She is thinking about physical thirst and getting out of her daily chores.
16 Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” 17 The woman answered and said, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You have well said, ‘I have no husband,’ 18 for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; in that you spoke truly.” Important: Jesus’ humanity never lessens His divinity. This is one of the few times when Jesus uses His divinity. And yet, whenever Jesus acts on His divinity it is never for Himself but rather in service to do His Father’s will.
19 The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship.” The conversation changes. First, Jesus is perceived as only a Jewish man. Now He is perceived to be a Jewish prophet.
21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. What is it to -- believe Me. Romans 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference. Galatians 2:16 16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. Romans 1:17 17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith (of Jesus) to faith (His faith for me): as it is written, The just shall live by (Jesus’ - Habakkuk 2:4) faith (alone - Luther’s simplification). Let me ask again, Who is Jesus and what gift does He give?
22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” Who is seeking whom? What is a true worshiper? God is seeking people who worship Him in spirit and truth. This is a passage that shows the partnership of the Holy Spirit and Holy Scripture. Question #93 from the Explanation of the Catechism asks, “Who is God?” Answer: God is spirit (a personal being without a body); eternal; unchangeable; almighty/all-powerful; all-knowing; located everywhere; holy (sinless & hating sin); faithful; good; merciful; gracious; love.
25 The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ). “When He comes, He will tell us all things.” Question #116: Why is He called Christ? The title Christ (Greek) or Messiah (Hebrew) means “The Anointed.” Jesus has been anointed by the Holy Spirit without limit (John 3:34) to be our Prophet, Priest, and King. Note: Anointing was the way prophets, priests and kings were set apart for special work. Acts 10:38 God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
26 Jesus said to her, “I who speak (solemnly proclaiming) to you AM He.” I AM solemnly proclaiming (My Father’s doctrine) to you in Holy Spirit and in Truth (Holy Scripture & Jesus is the Truth - see John 14). Jesus is the I AM who spoke to Moses from the burning bush in Exodus 3. This is when the Samaritan woman slowly stumbles backwards and runs off to tell her village… next week;) Jesus is giving eternal life by means of Holy Baptism which is the living (Spirit & Truth added to) water springing up to eternal life. God is seeking people who will receive and remain in this gift - which is also called worship.