Hello everybody and welcome in to episode #291 of the Bible 2021 podcast. We are reading John 4 today and our focus is on Learning From Jesus How to Have Spiritual Conversations With Those Who Don’t Believe. We are a daily 10ish minute podcast, where we will dig in to the truth of the Word of God by reading one Bible chapter a day and discussing it. Welcome to new listeners in Our goal is to encourage DAILY Bible reading, so you can jump in at any time and join with us. We want to invite as many people as possible to join us in daily Bible reading, so help spread the word and share the podcast! Don’t forget about our web-page, Bible2021.com – contact page, show notes, transcript and more– Click here for our Bible 2021 reading plan\
Most of the comments and contacts we get are quite positive. This one wasn’t. Comment from Jenna
#1. He breaks societal norms to have an important interaction with a woman who needs Him. The Bible does NOT forbid men from talking to women, nor does it forbid Jews from talking to Samaritans, but the mores and rules of society in Jesus’ day frowned upon both things…and yet, Jesus went against the current, to the shock of His disciples AND the woman at the well, and struck up a conversation with her.
2. Jesus initiated conversation in a non-threatening way – asking for help. He didn’t lead with a question like, “If you died tonight, do you know where you would spend eternity?” I’m not saying that is a bad question, but Jesus didn’t take the abrupt and direct route here – He began with the mundane, the common.
3. Jesus LISTENED to the responses of the woman at the well, and offered up engaging responses to her statements that were meant to draw her in – to pique her interest. He interacted with her very, very well. Sometimes Christians in a witnessing situation simply say their spiel, and if it works, great, if not – on to the next target…but Jesus didn’t do that. He listened and responded based on what the woman said and asked, for instance, “10 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.”
4. Jesus addressed a major issue in her life without condemnation. Jesus is God, therefore, He somehow knew this woman’s history. In first century Jewish society, there likely would have been a great deal of shame attached to being married 5 times, and living with a sixth man who wasn’t her husband. But Jesus didn’t guilt trip her – and He didn’t candy-coat it either. He spoke to her with dignity and grace, but did not sweep the truth of her life under the rug.
In this very interesting discussion, he is saying to this woman who has come to the well to get water, “I have a water that if you drank of it, you’d never thirst again.”She looks at him, and she says, “Sir, give me this water. What is this water that if I drink it, I will never thirst again? Give me this water.” What does Jesus say? “Go get your husband.” Why is he changing the subject? I don’t know, but there we go. She says, “Give me this water that if I drink it, I shall never thirst again.” “Go get your husband.” Then she said, “Well, but I don’t have a husband.” He says, “I know. You’ve had five husbands, and the man you’re living with now is not your husband.” “Wait a minute. What about the water thing here, Jesus? What are you doing? What are you coming on to me like this for? What are you hurting me for?” He was not. It was therapy. Don’t you see? It wasn’t a non sequitur. Here’s what he was saying. He says, “You want the water of life, the water only I can give you, and you’ve been looking for it in men. You have been looking for it in husbands. You’ve been looking for it in love. You’ve been looking for it in sex. You’re never going to find it there. Unless you make me your true love, unless you assuage the deepest thirst of your soul in me, unless you make me your true love, you’re going to go into one or the other dead end. You’re either going to make an idol out of some human being, or you’re going to make an idol out of your own selfish independence.
Timothy J. Keller, The Timothy Keller Sermon Archive (New York City: Redeemer Presbyterian Church, 2013).
Bible Memory passage for the month of October: 7 Dear friends, let us love one another, because love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 1 John 4:7-8
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