John 4: Samaritan Woman at the Well

Why did his disciples baptize people but not Jesus?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:1–2 Jesus was aware of the Pharisees who kept track and knew he baptized more people than John. Actually, it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples.
King James
John 4:1–2 When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John, (Though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples,)

What did his disciples think when Jesus chose the road through Samaria?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:3–4 He left Judea to go to Galilee. To get to Galilee, he insisted on taking the road through Samaria.
King James
John 4:3–4 He left Judaea, and departed again into Galilee. And he must needs go through Samaria.

If Jacob’s well was on a main road, how often and when would people be stopping there?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:5–6 Near the village of Sychar, not far from the field that Jacob gave to his son Joseph, he and his disciples came to Jacob’s well. It was midday when Jesus, weary from the journey, sat down with John.
King James
John 4:5–6 Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.

Why did Jesus ask the Samaritan woman for a drink?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:7 When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said, “Would you give me a drink?”
4:10 “If you understood God’s generosity and who is asking for a drink, you would ask me for a drink. I would give you living water.”
King James
John 4:7 There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.
4:10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.

Who was present with Jesus at the well? Why?

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John 4:8 The other disciples had gone to the village to buy food.
King James
John 4:8 (For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.)

Why did the Jews have nothing to do with the Samaritans?

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John 4:9 The question surprised her because Jews normally have nothing to do with Samaritans. “You are a Jew,” she said, “and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?”
King James
John 4:9 Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.

What was surprising about Jesus saying he had water to give when asked?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:10–12 “If you understood God’s generosity and who is asking for a drink, you would ask me for a drink. I would give you living water.”
“Sir, where are you going to get this living water? You have no vessel to draw with, and the well is deep. “How can you offer better water than our father Jacob, who gave us this well and drank from it, as did his children and his livestock?”
King James
John 4:10–12 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water? Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle?

What was the “water” that Jesus described, which the woman did not understand?

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John 4:13–14 “Everyone,” Jesus said, “who drinks this water will thirst again. But those who drink the water I give will never become thirsty. My water is a fresh artesian spring, bubbling with everlasting life.”
King James
John 4:13–14 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

How did Jesus respond to the woman’s request for his water? How might that have fulfilled her desire?

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John 4:15–19 “Sir, give me this water so I will not get thirsty and have to come to this well anymore.”
“Go and bring your husband here.”
“I have no husband.”
Jesus said, “That’s right. You have had five husbands, and the man you now live with is not your husband. You have certainly spoken truly.”
“Sir,” the woman said, “you must be a prophet.”
King James
John 4:15–19 The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw. Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither. The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband: For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly. The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.

What was the difference between Samaritan and Jewish worship?

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John 4:20–22 “Tell me, why do you Jews say we must worship in Jerusalem while Samaritans say we should go to Mount Gerizim, the place where our ancestors worshiped?”
“Believe me, woman, soon you will not worship the Father either here or in Jerusalem. You Samaritans do not know what you worship. We know, because salvation comes through the Jews.”
King James
John 4:20–22 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.

What is “true worship”? How is it “here now” and also “coming”?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:23–24 “The time is coming—in fact, it is here now—when the Father looks for true worship that is an expression from your spirit. God is spirit, so those people who truly worship must do so in spirit.”
King James
John 4:23–24 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Why was the woman open to believing Jesus was the Messiah?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:25–26 “I know the Messiah is coming—the one who is called Anointed. When he comes, he will explain everything.”
Then Jesus told her, “I am the Messiah.”
King James
John 4:25–26 The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.

Why were the disciples surprised to see Jesus talking to the Samaritan woman? Why didn’t they have the nerve to ask?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:27 The disciples returned from town and were surprised to see Jesus talking with a woman. No one had the nerve to ask, “What do you want with her?” or, “Why are you talking with her?”
King James
John 4:27 And upon this came his disciples, and marvelled that he talked with the woman: yet no man said, What seekest thou? or, Why talkest thou with her?

Why did the woman abandon her water jar?

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John 4:28 The woman left her water jar, went to the village, and told everyone she saw,
King James
John 4:28 The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men,

Why did so many people in town listen to the woman’s message?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:29–30 “Come see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could he be the Messiah?”
So they left the town to see Jesus.
4:39 Many Samaritans from the village believed in Jesus because the woman had said, “He told me everything I ever did.”
King James
John 4:29–30 Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ? Then they went out of the city, and came unto him.
4:39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.

What was the “food” that the disciples didn’t understand?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:31–34 Meanwhile, the disciples said to him, “Rabbi, have something to eat.”
“I have had food to eat that you know nothing about.”
The disciples said among themselves, “Did someone bring him food while we were gone?”
“My food,” Jesus said, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to complete his work.”
King James
John 4:31–34 In the mean while his disciples prayed him, saying, Master, eat. But he said unto them, I have meat to eat that ye know not of. Therefore said the disciples one to another, Hath any man brought him ought to eat? Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.

Why did Jesus say the harvest was now, not later?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:35 “You should not say, ‘It is another four months until harvest.’ I say, open your eyes and look at the fields, already ripe and ready to harvest.”
King James
John 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.

Who has the greater reason to rejoice, one who sows or one who reaps? Why?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:36–38 “The reapers receive their reward by gathering a harvest for eternal life, so the sower and reaper may rejoice together. The saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. I am sending you where others have planted, and now you get to gather the harvest.”
King James
John 4:36–38 And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together. And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth. I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.

After hearing the woman, what proof did the Samaritans from the town see for themselves?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:39 Many Samaritans from the village believed in Jesus because the woman had said, “He told me everything I ever did.”
4:42 The people said to the woman, “Not only do we believe because of what you said. We have seen and heard for ourselves and know for sure. He really is the Savior of the world.”
King James
John 4:39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.
4:42 And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.

How widespread and successful was the ministry in Samaria?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:40–41 After seeing him, they begged him to stay in their village. He stayed for two days, long enough for many more to hear and believe.
King James
John 4:40–41 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days. And many more believed because of his own word;

Why did Jesus say a prophet has no honor in his own country?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:43–44 Jesus pointed out to the disciples as they left Samaria for Galilee that a prophet has no honor in his own country.
King James
John 4:43–44 Now after two days he departed thence, and went into Galilee. For Jesus himself testified, that a prophet hath no honour in his own country.

What kind of honor did Jesus receive in Cana?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:45–48 When Jesus entered Galilee, the people welcomed him because many had been in Jerusalem at the Passover celebration and had seen what he did there.
A government official in Capernaum heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee and was in Cana, the place where Jesus had turned the water into wine. So the official went to Cana and begged Jesus to come to Capernaum and heal his son, who was about to die.
“Some of you will never believe,” Jesus said, “unless you see miracles and wonders.”
King James
John 4:45–48 Then when he was come into Galilee, the Galilaeans received him, having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the feast: for they also went unto the feast. So Jesus came again into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum. When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judaea into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the point of death. Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe.

Why didn’t Jesus go to heal the official’s son in Capernaum?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:49–50 The official said, “Sir, please come before my son dies.”
“You may go,” Jesus said. “Your son will live.”
The man took Jesus at his word and left.
King James
John 4:49–50 The official said, “Sir, please come before my son dies.” “You may go,” Jesus said. “Your son will live.” The man took Jesus at his word and left.

What did the father do after he learned that his son had recovered?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:51–53 While he was on the way home, his servants met him with the news that his son was alive and well.
“When did he begin to get better?” he said.
“Yesterday afternoon,” they said. “At seven o’clock, his fever suddenly disappeared.”
The official knew this was the hour Jesus had said, “Your son will live,” so he and his entire household believed in Jesus.
King James
John 4:51–53 And as he was now going down, his servants met him, and told him, saying, Thy son liveth. Then enquired he of them the hour when he began to amend. And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him. So the father knew that it was at the same hour, in the which Jesus said unto him, Thy son liveth: and himself believed, and his whole house.

Why was this only the second miracle that Jesus had done in Galilee?

Author’s Thoughts
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John 4:54 This was the second miracle Jesus did in Galilee, after he left Judea.
King James
John 4:54 This is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judaea into Galilee.