John 4:6-10

The Story of the Samaritan Woman 

4:6 – Jacob’s well was thereIt was located on land Jacob had given to Joseph. The word “well” here means “a running spring.” In John 4:11-12 the word for “well” suggests “it was dug out and fed by an underground spring.

 Jesus, therefore, being tired from his journey, sat down by the well. These words remind us that Jesus was also a human being. He got tired like we get tired. When He lived on the face of this earth, He had some physical limitations.

 4:6-7 – It was about the sixth hour. A woman of Samaria came to draw water. The Jewish day began at 6:00 A.M., so she came to the well at noon. Why did she come to the well to draw water in the hotter part of the day? The other women came to the well to draw water in the evening when the weather was not as hot.    

 4:9 – … How is it that you, (Jesus) being a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a Samaritan woman? She was shocked when Jesus asked her for a drink. She knew the Jews despised the Samaritans. The Jews who had intermarried with Gentiles (non-Jews) formed a mixed-race. They were known as Samaritans. Devout Jews believed the Jews who had intermarried non-Jews had committed an unforgivable crime. They had lost their racial purity. The Samaritan woman knew … if “a Jewish man spoke to a woman in public,” (and especially if he asked a Samaritan woman for a drink it) “was a definite breach (violation) of rigid (unbreakable) social custom…” (John MacArthur)   

4:10 – … Jesus answered her, If you knew… 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 words living waterhave an important symbolical significance in the Old Testament. For example, the prophet said my people have… forsaken me (God)the spring of living waters… (Jeremiah 2:13). Zechariah said, it will happen in that day, that living waters will go out from Jerusalem… (Zechariah 14:8).John takes themes like these and relates them “to Jesus Christ as the living water which is symbolic of the eternal life (which is) mediated by the Holy Spirit from Him” (John MacArthur). 

The Samaritan woman’s misunderstanding of Jesus’ words about living water is similar to Nicodemus’misunderstanding of Jesus’ words about the new birth (read John 3:4). It’s important that we remember the best the world can offer us is temporary. It is wonderful to live a life in Christ. A life that is supreme in quality and is eternal.

                            -All Scripture passages are taken from the World English Bible (WEB)- 

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