(John 4:1 NASB) When therefore the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John
(John 4:2 NASB) (although Jesus Himself was not baptizing, but His disciples were),
(John 4:3 NASB) He left Judea, and departed again into Galilee.
John 4:3: Yeshua knew the Pharisees were up to no good. They were going to attempt to discredit Yeshua because He was not willing to play their power games. Yeshua wanted to teach the people the Word of Elohim and show the love of Elohim. Yeshua knew when He went against the Pharisees, they would seek to have Him killed. His time was not yet.
(John 4:4 NASB) And He had to pass through Samaria.
John 4:4: Notice that Yeshua had to pass through Samaria. He is following His plan given to Him by His Father.
(John 4:5 NASB) So He came to a city of Samaria, called Sychar, near the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph;
John 4:5: This incident happened near the tomb of Joseph.
(John 4:6 NASB) and Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, was sitting thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour.
John 4:6: The time is about high noon. In that day, the Hebrew day started when the sun came up at about 6:00 AM. We are told that Yeshua is weary. Yeshua was very human. He ate, drank, laughed, slept, got tired, and even cried. You don’t get any more human than that.
This was not the normal time for gathering water. Most women did that in the evening after the sun went down and used that time to socialize and talk. They probably did a lot of talking about this one woman also. She wasn’t welcome to come get water with the rest of the women. She had to come in the middle of the day when none of the other women were there. She didn’t have any female friends. She had lots of male friends, but they were only temporary friends.
(John 4:7 NASB) There came a woman of Samaria to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.”
(John 4:8 NASB) For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.
(John 4:9 NASB) The Samaritan woman therefore said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.)
John 4:9: This woman has an attitude. The Samaritans are a very poor people and she is probably used to being treated poorly. She makes a racial comment to Yeshua. She does not appear to be a polite woman at all.
(John 4:10 NASB) Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”
John 4:10: Yeshua uses a reference from the Tanakh by saying “living water.” Elohim referred to Himself as the “fountain of living waters” (Jer. 2:13, 17:13). With this comment, Yeshua is identifying Himself as a manifestation of Elohim. He is the one who grants the Spirit of the Father.
We are told the living water is the Holy Spirit (John 7:37-39). In the Tanakh we are told that the fountains of life are Torah and the fear of Elohim (Psalm 36:9, Prov. 13:13-14, 16:22, 14:27).
It was prophesied that man would drink from the waters of salvation, which is Yeshua (Isaiah 12:1-3).
Yeshua gets this woman’s attention with His words. He was tender with this woman whose curiosity was piqued.
(John 4:11 NASB) She said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with and the well is deep; where then do You get that living water?
(John 4:12 NASB) “You are not greater than our father Jacob, are You, who gave us the well, and drank of it himself, and his sons, and his cattle?”
John 4:12: Notice that this woman was speaking of Jacob as her “father.” Samaritans were Israelites by blood, just as are the Jews.
When the northern kingdom (Israel) defected to Egypt in 722 B.C., Sargon, the king of Assyria, destroyed Samaria, the capital of Israel, carried her inhabitants to Assyria, and replaced them with foreigners who integrated with the remnant (2 Kin. 17:6, 24). In time, the monotheism of Israel became dominant, but a mixture of religious and racial intermarriages produced a people who became known as the Samaritans. When the southern kingdom of Judah returned from the captivity, the first signs of division and problems were evident in their refusal to accept assistance from Samaria for rebuilding the temple (Ezra 4 – not shown). Sanballat, who was then governor of Samaria, built a temple on Mount Gerizim (“this mountain,” John 4:20) to rival the one in Jerusalem. To add to the ongoing mutual animosity, John Hyrcanus (a Maccabean) destroyed the temple in Samaria in 128 B.C. This is why the Jews and the Samaritans had no dealings with each other, but they still had somewhat common beliefs.
(John 4:13 NASB) Jesus answered and said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water shall thirst again;
(John 4:14 NASB) but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.”
John 4:14: Yeshua makes it clear that He is not talking about Jacob’s well. Many people go to that well day after day searching for satisfaction, but they cannot attain it. Yeshua is using references from the Tanakh that tells of His people drinking of the Spirit of Elohim (Isa. 49:8-10, Psalm 36:8-9, 42:1-2, 107:9). Yeshua is creating a desire in her heart for His Word.
(John 4:15 NASB) The woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, so I will not be thirsty, nor come all the way here to draw.”
(John 4:16 NASB) He said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.”
John 4:16: Before she can come to the spiritual well (the Holy Spirit) for a drink, she must recognize she is in violation of the living water. Only His people who are chosen to be repentant can drink from the Spirit of Elohim. This woman is apparently one of the chosen and repents of her sins.
My old notes on John state that this woman must realize she is a sinner before she can partake of the Spirit. That is silly because she ALREADY KNEW she was wrong in what she is doing. She knew adultery was wrong. She didn’t need a realization that she was a sinner. She needed repentance in her life and to turn to Torah.
(John 4:17 NASB) The woman answered and said, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You have well said, ‘I have no husband’;
(John 4:18 NASB) for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; this you have said truly.”
John 4:18: She was accurate in saying that she didn’t have a husband. She had many husbands in the past and was living in adultery. Yeshua is letting her know He is aware of these things.
This woman now tries to change the subject.
(John 4:19 NASB) The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet.
(John 4:20 NASB) “Our fathers worshiped in this mountain, and you people say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.”
John 4:20: This woman knew that a prophet of Elohim sometimes can know things that are held in secret by others (2 Kings 6:12).
She says, “Since you’re a prophet, I’ve always wondered the answer to this question. Should we worship here or in Jerusalem?” She thought that getting Him to do a theological monologue on this popular question in that day would take His mind off her problems.
(John 4:21 NASB) Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, an hour is coming when neither in this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, shall you worship the Father.
(John 4:22 NASB) “You worship that which you do not know; we worship that which we know, for salvation is from the Jews.
John 4:22: Yeshua says that an hour is coming that they will not be worshipping the Father either on this mountain or in Jerusalem.
Yeshua then reminds her that salvation will come through the line of Judah (from the Jews), not just from the Israel descendants from which she is an offspring
(John 4:23 NASB) “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.
(John 4:24 NASB) “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 4:24: Yeshua tells her that true worshipers will worship the Father in Spirit and in Truth. That means they will tremble at His Words, instead of ignoring them (Isaiah 66:1-2). Yeshua is telling her that she cannot worship Elohim and continue to practice her sin. To do so is to make the Father’s house a den of robbers (Jer. 7:1-11). It is those who orders his way aright and does not regard wickedness in his heart who will worship Him (Psalm 50:23, 66:18-20).
(John 4:25 NASB) The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called Christ); when that One comes, He will declare all things to us.”
(John 4:26 NASB) Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.”
John 4:26: The Samaritan religion was somewhat of a watered down version of the Jewish religion, but they still knew of the coming Messiah. It is thought that the Samaritans only went by the Torah. But she was obviously familiar with the doctrine of the coming Messiah which is more developed in the books of the Prophets and the Psalms. However, her comment could have come from only a knowledge of Torah (Deut. 18:15-18).
(John 4:27 NASB) And at this point His disciples came, and they marveled that He had been speaking with a woman; yet no one said, “What do You seek?” or, “Why do You speak with her?”
John 4:27: The disciples were disturbed that Yeshua talked to this woman. They held their prejudices to themselves because they knew that Yeshua was doing what was right..
(John 4:28 NASB) So the woman left her waterpot, and went into the city, and said to the men,
John 4:28: Notice who she went and told. She told the men. She was not on speaking terms with the women, but she was popular with the men.
(John 4:29 NASB) “Come, see a man who told me all the things that I have done; this is not the Christ, is it?”
(John 4:30 NASB) They went out of the city, and were coming to Him.
John 4:30: The witness of this woman causes the men to immediately go to Yeshua. Yeshua knew that by sitting at the well and talking with that woman that a whole area would come to Him
(John 4:31 NASB) In the meanwhile the disciples were requesting Him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.”
(John 4:32 NASB) But He said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.”
(John 4:33 NASB) The disciples therefore were saying to one another, “No one brought Him anything to eat, did he?”
(John 4:34 NASB) Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work.
John 4:34: Yeshua told the woman that with His water she would never thirst. He was speaking of the Spirit of Elohim. Now He says to His disciples that He has food that they do not know about. That food is to do the will of His Father and to accomplish His work. This is another principle grounded in the Tanakh that knowing His Torah and following it is our daily food (Job 23:12, Psalm 19:7-11, 119:101-106, Jer. 15:16).
Yeshua was consistent in His use of that terminology (Luke 12:42-46).
This should also help us understand the words of Yeshua when He taught us to pray (Matt. 6:10-11). In that passage He is telling us to pray for His Torah to be performed in our lives the same way it is done in heaven and for us to partake of His Word and perform it daily.
(John 4:35 NASB) “Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes, and look on the fields, that they are white for harvest.
(John 4:36 NASB) “Already he who reaps is receiving wages, and is gathering fruit for life eternal; that he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together.
(John 4:37 NASB) “For in this case the saying is true, ‘One sows, and another reaps.’
(John 4:38 NASB) “I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.”
John 4:38: Yeshua is saying that many men have gone before His disciples and planted seeds that have been growing for a long time. The seeds that have been planted is the Word of Elohim that Moses and the prophets told the people many, many years previous. The disciples can now move in, point to the Torah which has been in place, and reap the results of the hard work that has been done before they came along.
(John 4:39 NASB) And from that city many of the Samaritans believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, “He told me all the things that I have done.”
John 4:39: The testimony and faithfulness of one woman with a terrible past was all that Yeshua needed for almost a whole city to believe (have faithfulness in Him). She didn’t have a great skill at preaching and she didn’t have spiritual insight into the mysteries of Elohim’s Word. She was simply willing to submit herself to Elohim and that is what He requires.
(John 4:40 NASB) So when the Samaritans came to Him, they were asking Him to stay with them; and He stayed there two days.
(John 4:41 NASB) And many more believed because of His word;
(John 4:42 NASB) and they were saying to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves and know that this One is indeed the Savior of the world.”
John 4:42: These people came to the Living Water and drank. The only requirement was that they had to thirst for the righteousness of Elohim. This same theme is described in Isaiah. Elohim tells us that He has the water and food that we need to be pleasing to Him. That is what we should feast upon instead of the drunkenness of man’s traditions (Isaiah 55-56).
These people in Samaria were led to the Living Waters because of the witness of this woman. They then drank because they were called by Elohim and they were thirsty. They believed Him and followed His ways because they heard the Word of Elohim.
(John 4:43 NASB) And after the two days He went forth from there into Galilee.
(John 4:44 NASB) For Jesus Himself testified that a prophet has no honor in his own country.
John 4:44: The people in His hometown knew Him as that carpenter’s son. “What can He possibly do for us?” They were blinded by their own prejudices. Yeshua grew up in much difficulty and ridicule.
(John 4:45 NASB) So when He came to Galilee, the Galileans received Him, having seen all the things that He did in Jerusalem at the feast; for they themselves also went to the feast.
John 4:45: We are told in John 2 the Yeshua was in Jerusalem for the Passover and performed many signs. The Galileans were there also and witnessed these signs.
(John 4:46 NASB) He came therefore again to Cana of Galilee where He had made the water wine. And there was a certain royal official, whose son was sick at Capernaum.
(John 4:47 NASB) When he heard that Jesus had come out of Judea into Galilee, he went to Him, and was requesting Him to come down and heal his son; for he was at the point of death.
(John 4:48 NASB) Jesus therefore said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you simply will not believe.”
John 4:48: We don’t know much about this man except that he was a royal official and he came to Cana. He asked Yeshua to heal his son who was dying.
By Yeshua’s comment, He seems to be distraught with this man. “Unless you see signs and wonders, you will not believe.” The words “people” and “simply” are not in the text. Yeshua is talking to this man in particular saying that he will not have faithfulness in Him unless he sees signs and wonders first.
(John 4:49 NASB) The royal official said to Him, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”
(John 4:50 NASB) Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your son lives.” The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him, and he started off.
(John 4:51 NASB) And as he was now going down, his slaves met him, saying that his son was living.
(John 4:52 NASB) So he inquired of them the hour when he began to get better. They said therefore to him, “Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.”
(John 4:53 NASB) So the father knew that it was at that hour in which Jesus said to him, “Your son lives”; and he himself believed, and his whole household.
John 4:53: Yeshua knew the heart of this man. He would not believe Yeshua unless he sees signs and wonders. He saw a sign, one that was very important to him, and He then believed Yeshua. Yeshua performed this sign for this man and his household so they might believe.
What does it mean that they “believed?” That Jesus dies on the cross? Obviously not! For them to “believe,” according to the Greek definition, means they entrusted Yeshua. To entrust someone means they you do what they say. This family entrusted the Words of Yeshua and acted upon them (Deut. 18:18-19).
(John 4:54 NASB) This is again a second sign that Jesus performed, when He had come out of Judea into Galilee.
John 4:54: This was a second sign that Yeshua performed in Cana.
Patrick McGuireCopyright 2014 Patrick McGuire and Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly All rights reserved, no portion of this Lesson may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations in articles and reviews. Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly Fort Smith, Arkansas