Jesus, wearied as he was from his journey, was sitting beside the well. It was about the sixth hour (John 4:6).
The bible tells us in John 4 that Jesus and his disciples needed to pass through Samaria on their way to Galilee, and that they stopped in a town called Sychar. Historically and culturally it seemed odd for this to occur since Jews and Samaritans did not associate. Yet we find Jesus sitting by a well near the noon day while the disciples have gone off to buy food. Then a Samaritan woman comes alone to draw water from the well. Jesus asks her for a drink.
The Samaritan woman is surprised that He, a Jew, is asking her for a drink. Jesus tells her that if she knew who was asking for a drink, she would be asking and she would be given living water, water that she will not thirst from again. Like Nicodemus, she misses the point that Jesus is conveying. She is focused on the physical and not the spiritual. Even so she does ask Jesus for this water He talks about.
That is when Jesus addresses her moral condition, her sin. 16 Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” 17 The woman answered him, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You are right in saying, ‘I have no husband’; 18 for you have had five husbands, and the one you now have is not your husband. What you have said is true.” (John 4:16-18)
This explains why she is at the well alone at midday drawing water. She would be considered an outcast of sorts. She most likely carries shame and guilt. So while the disciples are gone and the woman is alone, the Word made Flesh stops to have a talk with her in which He reveals Himself to her as the Messiah. As a result of that encounter with Christ the woman, the outcast, goes to the people of the town to tell them about Jesus. As a result many of the town people come seeking Christ and are saved.
There are a few things that stick out to me here.
- The first is that Jesus needed to go through a place that they would not have normally gone through.
- The second is that He took the time to minister to a woman that was not was not in His culture, and she was someone that was perhaps shunned or looked down upon.
- The third was she He addressed her sin, her moral condition in such a way that she was able to see it, but He did not do it with condemnation.
- Lastly, He used the a woman of low position in this town to reach out, and bring others to salvation.
These are all things that we can apply today as we encounter others though out the day. Sometimes that detour, whatever that may be, could be meant for something bigger. It is not for us to judge who is worth sharing the Gospel message to based on our perception of them, their character or being culturally different from us. For some, we may be the only Christ they will ever see in life. So when things don’t go exactly as we plan, we should look for opportunities. The just may be a Divine appointment scheduled for us.
Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest.