The Woman at the Well

In our study of “The Story”, Chapter 23 reveals the beginning of Christ’s ministry. Considered a young man at the age of 30, Jesus takes on the difficult role of explaining why he came to earth.

Can we practice his method of teaching today? Do we recognize the people in our society who need the gospel of Christ or who need to respond to the gospel story may not be like us? They might be unwed mothers, they might be ex-criminals, they most likely are poor, and they probably don’t fit in to our circle of friends and families.

Jesus’ claims made him very unpopular with the majority of Israel society. Jesus knew his purpose and where he would most likely be received. He spent most of his time with ordinary people who had basic ordinary needs. A great example is the Samaritan woman he met at Jacob’s well. Here was an obvious 2nd class citizen even in the Samaritan culture. Jesus picked a thoroughly messed up woman of a race looked down on by Jews who had been married 5 times and the last man she was living with was not legally her husband.

Jesus knew who he was talking to before he began his encounter with her. Knowing her background and sinful life did not deter Jesus’ from treating her with respect and kindness. He asks a favor of a sinful woman. This even shocked his disciples. Her giving Jesus a drink of water was really pushing the normal limits of what was considered proper Jewish behavior. In this unique setting, he teaches her the meaning of the “water of life”. He respected her Samaritan religious beliefs explaining that one day true worshippers would worship the Father in Spirit and in truth not in these mountains, or in Jerusalem.

Because of Jesus’ thoughtful, respectful and kind approach to teaching, she was willing to acknowledge Him as God’s son. This leads to her sharing the good news with her family and friends in Sychar. They spend 2 days listening to Jesus preach and teach. Many believed because of her testimony regarding Jesus. This all started out with eyes closed to race, social conditions and lifestyle of this woman.

This is quite a challenge to us today. We have numerous people who come to us through our benevolence program with questionable backgrounds. We are challenged to remember Christ’s example here “at the well” regarding how to treat them. Our treating them begins with our ability to see a soul and not just a person. Preconceived ideas about people are often wrong. We have no idea about where some people have come from with regards to their family upbringing and their social and economic status. We are much more comfortable in talking and dealing with people we perceive as “like us.” Our perceptions are often ill advised. Jesus was able to talk and teach the worst or the best of people he encountered. His message took into account the condition of the person he was teaching with the intent of helping the sinful listener. This principle is our major challenge in teaching others about Jesus.

“It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners.” This call can only be passed on to those who are willing to engage in conversation with us about the wonderful news of Christ’s gospel.

Other Posts You Might Like:

Just Another Blog - Laurie Templeton

There Is More…There Is Power - Ross Thomson

Listen to the Voice of God – He Is In Control - Jabbarri Jones

Standing Tall, Falling Hard: Blessing and Curse of Free Will - Laurie Templeton

The Quest - Nic Dunbar



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McKinney at Cardinal

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