Jesus met our final woman for this week at a well in the midday sun. In doing so, he associated himself with the Samaritans, an ethnic group his Jewish contemporaries disparaged. Jews would not eat or drink anything associated with a Samaritan, but Jesus asked this woman for a drink, meaning he would have had to drink from her bucket.
Furthermore, no respectable Jewish man would speak in public with a woman who was a stranger to him. When we learn she was living with a man outside of marriage, this makes Jesus’ actions even more remarkable.
But Jesus did speak with her. In fact, he engaged her in the longest theological discussion recorded in the gospels! He allowed her to challenge his understanding, and to ask questions. When he answered, he didn’t try to dominate the conversation, and he didn’t demean her. During their discussion, Jesus reveals for the first time that he is Messiah, God’s Saviour of the world. This Samaritan woman heard the truth of Jesus’ identity long before any of his disciples!
Jesus looked beyond everything that society saw in this woman. In her he discovered a lively, responsive mind that was worth engaging. He found someone worthy of knowing his identity. And he identified her as an effective evangelist – so convinced was she by Jesus’ answers, that she enthusiastically and effectively led the men and women of her village to Christ!
Jesus calls us to take the women around us seriously too, especially any who might be seen as outcasts or marginalised in society. Women are as key to future of the church as anyone else. Everyone matters to God.
Think It Over
Think about the following:
- Jesus crossed all social, cultural, and political barriers to share the Good News. What barriers do you need to cross?
Unless otherwise shown, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004, 2007, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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