There are very many different topics that we could look at in John chapter four. In these verses, we can learn about some of the characteristics of God that Jesus showed us through these two different events. These pieces of evidence of Jesus being God are: First, that Jesus is all-knowing. He had never met the Samaritan woman before that day but was able to tell her about her past mistakes in life. Second, Jesus plainly said that He is the Messiah, the anointed One of God, that was foretold of in the Old Testament. The third evidence that we find is the healing of the official’s son. Through that miracle, we see that Jesus is not bound to time and space. He just simply said, “Go, your son will live.” All of these events show us that Jesus is the Son of God and the hope of all humanity. Instead of discussing these in length here, we will focus on just a few verses and a problem that I see in some churches today.
“A woman of Samaria came to draw water. “Give Me a drink,” Jesus said to her, for His disciples had gone into town to buy food. “How is it that You, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a Samaritan woman? ” she asked Him. For Jews do not associate with Samaritans. Jesus answered, “If you knew the gift of God, and who is saying to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would ask Him, and He would give you living water.” “Sir,” said the woman, “You don’t even have a bucket, and the well is deep. So where do You get this ‘living water’? You aren’t greater than our father Jacob, are You? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and livestock.” Jesus said, “Everyone who drinks from this water will get thirsty again. But whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty again — ever! In fact, the water I will give him will become a well of water springing up within him for eternal life.” “Sir,” the woman said to Him, “give me this water so I won’t get thirsty and come here to draw water.” John 4:7-15 HCSB (https://www.bible.com/72/jhn.4.7-15.hcsb)
In these verses we find the beginning of Jesus’ conversation with the Samaritan woman. Jesus gives a simple request for some water and the Samaritan woman responds with bitterness. The Jews and Samaritans didn’t associate with each other. Many of us in this situation would have responded in anger or made some type of rude remark. Jesus simply replied that if she knew who Jesus was she would have as ask Him and received living water. Her reply was again from a place of bitterness pointing out that Jesus didn’t have anything to draw water with and questioned Jesus’ position against that of Jacob. Again Jesus shows His patients when answering her. He explained that if you drink from the well you will thirst again, but if you drink from the water He gives you will never thirst again. Her response was give me this water so I don’t ever have to come to this well again. She missed the point.
How do these verses relate to the problem that some churches have today? The problem with many churches today is that they focus so much on the here and now that they never get to what matters. They teach about how to have your best life now and focus on the physical. The world loves this and is very pleased to sit in a church on Sunday and be told how they can have a more comfortable life today. All they have to do is believe that God wants to bless them.
This type of gospel is known as the prosperity gospel. Come to God and be blessed with physical health, wealth, and anything else that you desire. It is true that God does and will bless His people, but nowhere in the Bible can you find scriptures that support the prosperity gospel. These churches are leading people to hell because they are stuck on the physical when God wants to change people spiritually.
From the beginning of the conversation, Jesus was trying to move the conversation to the spiritual condition of the Samaritan women. The problem was that she was stuck in the physical. She had bitterness toward the Jews and didn’t understand why Jesus would speak to her. Then she mockingly asked if Jesus was greater than Jacob. Give me this water to make my life easier, was her response to the Living Water. Just like my people that are flocking to these churches teaching the prosperity gospel.
Thankfully Jesus didn’t allow the Samaritan woman to remain focused on her physical condition and spoke to the heart of the issue. Her sin and her need for a Savior.
“Go call your husband,” He told her, “and come back here.” “I don’t have a husband,” she answered. “You have correctly said, ‘I don’t have a husband,’ ” Jesus said. “For you’ve had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have said is true.”
John 4:16-18 HCSB (https://www.bible.com/72/jhn.4.16-18.hcsb)
When she was confronted with her sin she realized her need for Living Water. After this encounter, her life was changed for the better. She still had to go get water from the well, but she never spiritually thirsted again. Many churches are involved in spiritual malpractice by not bringing the people to the point of repentance.
Don’t be like many people of today wanting only God’s blessings for the here and now, but never being changed spiritually by repenting of their sins and come to faith in Jesus. God will bless you. You will still have some problems, but God will be with you. Don’t miss the spiritual change that God wants to bring about in your life, because you are too focused on your current physical situation.
Questions for Reflection:
Is there anything in your life that is keeping you from accepting the spiritual change that God wants to do in your life?
What can we do to help others get past bitterness and other issues that keep them from drinking the living water?