Samaritan Woman

Jesus met a woman at a well in Samaria and explained worship is not a matter of being in Jerusalem or Samaria, but spirit and truth. The numbers point at the book explaining Samaritans and demonstrating why Jesus would say the ancient capitals don't matter any longer for worship.

John 4:1-30

FA 1Joshua knew that the Pharisees had heard he made many disciples and was baptizing more people than John, 2when Joshua himself did not baptize, but his disciples, 3and he left Judah and went again to Galilee, 4but he had to go through the house of the Samaritans. John 4:1-45He came to a city of Samaria called, Sychar, near the city which Jacob had given to his son Joseph. H Genesis 48:22 6There was there a spring of water of Jacob. H Genesis 26:19 Joshua was tired by the fatigue of the road and sat down by the spring. It was about the 6th hour. M Genesis 24:11 John 4:5-67A woman L Genesis 16:1 from Samaria came to draw water and Joshua said to her, Give me water to drink. 8His disciples had entered into the city to buy food for themselves. John 4:7-89The Samaritan woman said to him, How is it that you, a Jew, should ask me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink, for Jews do not associate with Samaritans? John 4:910Joshua answered saying to her, If you knew the gift of god, and who this is who said to you, Give me a drink, you would have asked him, and he would have given you living waters. A Genesis 16:14 John 4:1011The woman said to him, My master you have no leather bucket and the well is deep. Where do you get the living waters? 12Are you greater than our father Jacob who gave us this well and drank from it himself along with his sons and his sheep? John 4:11-1213Joshua answered saying to her, Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again, 14but whoever drinks of the water which I give him will never thirst and the water which I give him will become in him a spring of water springing up to everlasting life. John 4:13-1415The woman said to him, My master give me of this water so that I will not thirst again and I will not need to come and draw from here. John 4:1516Joshua said to her, Go and call your husband and come here. John 4:1617She said to him, I have no husband. John 4:17Joshua said to her, You said well, I have no husband. 18You have had 5 husbands and the one you now have is not your husband. What you said is true. John 4:17-1819The woman said to him, My master I see that you are a prophet. 20Our fathers bowed on this mountain. You say the place where men must bow is in Jerusalem. John 4:19-2021Joshua said to her, Woman, believe me, the time is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you bow A Micah 4:1 FA to the father. 22You bow to what you do not know, but we bow to what we do know for life is from the Jews. 23The time is coming and it is here when the true bowers will bow to the father in spirit and in truth, for the father also desires bowers such as these. 24For god is spirit and those who bow to him must bow to him in spirit and in truth. John 4:21-2425The woman said to him, I know that the anointed is coming. When he has come he will teach us everything. John 4:2526Joshua said to her, I am he who is speaking to you. John 4:2627While he was talking his disciples came and were surprised that he was talking with a woman, but no one said to him, What are you seeking, or, Why are you talking with her? John 4:2728The woman then left her water jar and went to the city and said to the men, 29Come and see a man who told me everything which I have done. FA Is he the anointed? John 4:28-2930The men went out of the city and came to him. John 4:30-31 (John 4:1-30 BRB)


6+5 = 11 = Second Kings

Second Kings

Several interesting correlations exist between the story of the woman at the well and the book of Second Kings. First, the best place in the Bible to learn about Samaritans is the book of Second Kings, because it explains who the Samaritans were. In short, after the Assyrians had defeated the northern kingdom of Israel and hauled everyone away, they transplanted other people.

24The king of Assyria brought people from Babel and from Cuthah and from Avva and from Hamath and from Sepharvaim and settled them in the cities of Samaria instead of the children of Israel and they possessed Samaria and lived in its cities. 2 Kings 17:24-26 (2 Kings 17:24 BRB)

The bias seen even in Jesus' day towards Samaritans was a result of the way Samaritans were from other nations and not considered constituents of the covenant.

Once Jesus is giving this Samaritan woman the time of day she begins to unload questions. At one point she makes the statement that the Jews say the place to worship is in Jerusalem, though her ancestors worshiped in Samaria. Jesus, not missing a beat, says that it's not Samaria or Jerusalem that matters. To fully appreciate what Jesus is saying requires a quick review of the major events recorded in Second Kings.

In Second Kings both Samaria and Jerusalem were overthrown, each in turn. The covenant people had to flee or be taken captive to Assyria or Babylon. Other than a small remnant that returned to Jerusalem later, the Israelites did not remain in either of these historic capitals. Rather, the covenant people were tossed into the sea of nations. Jesus' point is that access to a temple or location, like Samaria or Jerusalem, is not necessary to be part of the covenant. In other words, the covenant did not cease to play out when the Israelites were driven into the nations.

The woman's five husbands is likely a play on the five houses that ruled the northern kingdom.