Blog 8 John 4:1-42

Sunday 11 November 2012 7pm

An encounter at the well – natural evangelism

Jesus, we discovered, had a real sense of time – not one o’clock and two o’clock[1] but when it was ‘time’ – the right time – to do something or not to do. Some of us always wanted to seize the moment and go with the flow. So now, as things hot up and the Pharisees are paying more attention, he leaves for Galilee in a hurry – so he has to go through Samaria.[2]

 So we arrive at midday in the heat at Sychar, and he sends us off to buy food in the village whilst he sits down by the well to rest. When we return we are shocked, actually flabbergasted, he is talking to a SAMARITAN WOMAN. The first is bad enough the second just unbelievable. Here he is talking with sworn enemies but also breaking every rule of polite society – we would have hardly been more shocked if he had been eating a ham sandwich![3]

[1] The day was divided into twelve hours from daybreak to sunset, roughly 6am to 6pm. At this latitude there is only a little variation between summer and winter. The night is divided into four watches, each three hours long.

[2] Most Jews avoided Samaria although it added days to the journey and involved going all the way down into the Jordan Valley and for Nazareth back up into the hills at the other end of the journey. Such was the antipathy between the two groups.

[3] Jews of course do not eat pork. The Samaritans do.