Maybe She’s Not Who You Think She Was

The man at the pool; Jesus told him to stop sinning.

The woman caught in adultery; Jesus said to her, go and sin no more.

The woman at the well?

Do you know this woman?

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What did Jesus say to her?

Now Yeshua knew that the Pharisees heard that He was making and immersing more disciples than John. (Although Yeshua Himself was not immersing, His disciples were.) So He left Judea and went back again to the Galilee. But He needed to pass through Samaria. So He comes to a Samaritan town called Shechem, near the plot of land that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob’s well was there. So Yeshua, exhausted from the journey, was sitting by the well. It was midday. A Samaritan woman comes to draw water. “Give me a drink,” Yeshua tells her, for His disciples had gone away to the town to buy food.

What? WHY WAS SHE THERE AT MIDDAY? My entire life, I have been taught that only a shunned woman would go to the well in the heat of the day. All the good women went early in the morning when it was cool.

 

Maybe.

 

When my children were young, I often went to the store during the day for groceries. There were, however, a handful of times when the kids were sick, or other things came up during the day, and I ended up at the grocery store….. late at night! Not my normal time for “getting water”.

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Then the Samaritan woman tells Him, “How is it that You, a Jew, ask me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink?” (For Jewish people don’t deal with Samaritans.)
Yeshua replied to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who is saying to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”
“Sir,” the woman tells Him, “You don’t have a bucket, and the well is deep. Then from where do You get this living water? You’re not greater than our father Jacob, are You? He gave us this well. He drank out of it himself, with his sons and his cattle.”
Yeshua replied to her, “Everyone who drinks from this water will get thirsty again. But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never be thirsty. The water that I give him will become a fountain of water within him, springing up to eternal life!”
“Sir,” the woman tells Him, “give me this water, so I won’t get thirsty or have to come all the way here to draw water!”
He tells her, “Go call your husband, and then come back here.”
“I don’t have a husband,” the woman replied.
Yeshua tells her, “You’ve said it right, ‘I have no husband.’ 18 For you’ve had five husbands, and the man you have now isn’t your husband. This you’ve spoken truthfully!”

Jesus did not call her out for any kind of sin. He said she spoke truthfully. But five husbands, and now she is living with a man? Oh, surely she is a woman of questionable character.

 

Maybe.

 

In the book of Deuteronomy, Moses shares with the Israelites all the things God commanded about the way they should live. God even addressed how to handle widowhood.

“ If brothers are living together and one of them dies without a son, his widow must not marry outside the family. Her husband’s brother shall take her and marry her and fulfill the duty of a brother-in-law to her. The first son she bears shall carry on the name of the dead brother so that his name will not be blotted out from Israel. However, if a man does not want to marry his brother’s wife, she shall go to the elders at the town gate and say, “My husband’s brother refuses to carry on his brother’s name in Israel. He will not fulfill the duty of a brother-in-law to me.”

There is an example of this with Tamar and Judah’s sons in the book of Genesis.

Then Judah got a wife for Er, his firstborn, and her name was Tamar. But Er, Judah’s firstborn, was evil in ADONAI’S eyes, so ADONAI put him to death. Then Judah said to Onan, go to your brother’s wife to perform the duty of a brother-in-law to her, and raise up a seed for your brother. But Onan knew that the seed would not be his. So every time he went to his brother’s wife he would destroy it on the ground so as not to provide a seed for his brother. What he did was evil in ADONAI’S eyes, so He put him to death also. Then Judah said to his daughter-in-law Tamar, “Stay as a widow in your father’s house until my son Shelah grows up.” Because he thought, “Otherwise, he too might die, like his brothers.” So Tamar went and stayed in her father’s house.

Judah only had three sons, so one can empathize with his hesitancy in giving her to his third son. What if he’d had more?

The Sadducees questioned Jesus about this custom in the book of Luke.

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Then some of the Sadducees (who deny there is a resurrection) came and questioned Yeshua. “Teacher,” they said, “Moses wrote for us that ‘ if a man’s brother dies’ having a wife ‘but no children, then his brother should take the widow and father children for his brother.’ Now there were seven brothers, and the first took a wife and died childless; and the second and the third took her, but in the same way, each of the seven brothers died and left no children. Finally the woman died too. So in the resurrection, whose wife is she? For all seven had married her.”

Maybe they were exaggerating in regards to seven brothers. Knowing that they are trying to trick Him, Jesus still simply and respectfully responds to them with the truth.

“Sir,” the woman tells Him, “I see that You are a prophet! Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you all say that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”
Yeshua tells her, “Woman, believe Me, an hour is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. But an hour is coming—it is here now—when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people as His worshipers. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
The woman tells Him, “I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called the Anointed One.) When He comes, He will explain everything to us.”

She is having a pretty interesting, intelligent conversation with Jesus. I think she was one smart and educated woman, and she sounds like she has things together – a woman of wisdom.

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Yeshua tells her, “I—the One speaking to you—I am.” At this moment, His disciples came back. They were amazed that He was speaking with a woman. Yet no one said, “What do You want?” or “Why are You speaking with her?”

So the woman left her water jar and went back to the town. She tells the people, “Come see a man who told me everything I ever did! He couldn’t be the Messiah, could He?” The people left the town and began coming to Him.

Now, if she was who we’ve long been led to believe she was, would the people follow her for this? Would it have been a surprise that someone knew everything she ever did?

Meanwhile, the disciples were pressing Him, “Rabbi, eat!”
But He said to them, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.”
So the disciples were saying to each other, “No one brought Him food to eat, did they?”
Yeshua tells them, “My food is to do the will of the One who sent Me and to accomplish His work. Don’t you say, ‘Four more months, and then comes the harvest’? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields! They are white and ready for harvest. “The reaper receives a reward and gathers fruit for eternal life, so that the sower and reaper may rejoice together. For the saying is true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ I sent you to reap what you haven’t worked for. Others have worked hard, and you have joined in their work.”

Wow! She possibly had had a rough life, but she kept pressing through. She was doing her best to keep things together. She stayed on track with her beliefs. She was waiting for the Messiah, knowing He would one day come. Jesus knew her struggles, and He chose to reveal Himself to her! How encouraging would that be?!

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Many of the Samaritans from that town put their trust in Him because of the word of the woman testifying, “He told me everything I ever did!”

Because of her word! She was trustworthy. Jesus came to her because she was ready. She was the first-fruit of her community’s harvest.

So when the Samaritans came to Him, they kept asking Him to stay with them. He stayed there two days, and many more believed because of His word. They kept telling the woman, “It’s no longer because of your words that we believe. We’ve heard for ourselves! Now we know that this really is the Savior of the world!”

 

The Samaritan woman. Do you know her?
Maybe she’s not who you always thought she was.
Maybe.
Scripture references: John 4:14, John 8:11, Deuteronomy 25:5-7, Genesis 38:6-11, Luke 20:27-33, Tree of Life Version (TLV)

8 Comments

  1. Love this, Carla. A beautiful reminder that Yeshua knows our hearts and reveals himself when we are ready, regardless of our past or present situation. I like thinking that she was perhaps a levirate bride….several times. It is plausable!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love this, Carla. A great picture showing that Yeshua knows our hearts and reveals himself to us regardless of our past or present. I like thinking that the woman was a levirate bride. Completely plausable!

    Liked by 1 person

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