Speaking the Truth in Love

His Need, Her Need

Image result for biblical wellJesus meets the Samaritan woman at the Sychar well. He offers her “living water” (John 4:10), but several things make accepting his offer difficult. She is hindered by racial prejudice, lack of spiritual discernment, an immoral lifestyle, false religious beliefs, and cultural discrimination against women.Image result for jesus meets Nicodemus the Pharisee

This familiar story is in John 4, but the chapter division separates two narratives that may belong together. The accounts of Nicodemus the Pharisee (ch. 3) and the woman at the Sychar well (ch. 4) present a fascinating contrast. Note below some key differences between them:

• He is a man. She is a woman.
• He is a Jew. She is a Samaritan.
• He has good character. She is immoral.
• He is serious. She is flippant.
• He is well-educated. She is unlearned.
• He is rich and powerful. She is lowly and despised.

In spite of their striking differences, this man and woman have something in common. To Nicodemus, Jesus says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). To the Samaritan woman, Jesus says, “Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst; the water that I shall give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (4:14). What these two have in common is a need for Jesus, the source of life and hope. You and I need Jesus too.

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