LIFE OF CHRIST
A Harmony of the Gospels
(1) There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a
ruler of the Jews. (2) This man came to Jesus by night
and said to Him, "Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from
God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with
(3 ) Jesus answered and said to him, "Most assuredly, I
say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of
(4) Nicodemus said to Him, "How can a man be born
when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb
and be born?"
(5) Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to
you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the
kingdom of God. (6) That which is born of the flesh is
flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (7)
Do not marvel that I said to you, 'You must be born again.'
(8) The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of
it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is
everyone who is born of the Spirit."
(9) Nicodemus answered and said to Him,
"How can these things be?"
(10) Jesus answered and said to him, "Are you the
teacher of Israel, and do not know these things? (11)
Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what
We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. (12)
If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will
you believe if I tell you heavenly things? (13) No one
has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is,
the Son of Man who is in heaven. (14) And as Moses
lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man
be lifted up, (15) that whoever believes in Him should
not perish but have eternal life. (16) For God so loved
the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes
in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (17)
For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world,
but that the world through Him might be saved.
(18) "He who believes in Him is not condemned;
but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not
believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (19)
And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the
world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds
were evil. (20) For everyone practicing evil hates the
light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be
exposed. (21) But he who does the truth comes to the
light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done
A ruler of the Jews
One of the members of the grand Sanhedrin:
||The word Sanhedrin, or “Sanhedrim”,
Talmudic Hebrew transcription of the Greek “synedrion”
and corresponds to the English word “council.”
||The Talmud connects the Sanhedrin with
Moses 70 elders,
then with the alleged Great Synagogue of Ezra’s time;
but the truth is that the origin of the Sanhedrin is unknown, and
there is no historical evidence for its existence before the Greek
||During the reign of the Hellenistic
kings, Palestine was practically under home rule, and
was governed by an aristocratic council of elders that was presided
over by the hereditary high priest.
||The council was called “Gerousia,”
that always signifies an aristocratic body.
This later developed into the Sanhedrin.
||During most of the Roman period the
internal government of the country was practically in its hands,
and its influences was recognized by the
||After the death of
Herod the Great,
however, during the reign of Archelaus and the Roman procurators,
the civil authority of the Sanhedrin was restricted to Judaea proper
(which is very likely the reason it had no judicial authority over
Jesus so long as He remained in Galilee).
||The Sanhedrin was composed of 70
members, plus the president, who was the high priest.
||Nothing is known as to the way in which
vacancies were filled, but successors were very likely
appointed either by the existing members themselves or by the
supreme political authorities.
||New members were formally admitted by
the ceremony of the laying on of hands.
||The members of the Sanhedrin council
were drawn from three classes:
||The acting high priest
||Those who had been high priests
||Members of the privileged
families from which the high priest were taken
|Who formed the
Pharisaic element in
the Sanhedrin, although not all Pharisees were
|These were the tribal and family heads of the
people and priesthood.
They were, for the most part, the secular nobility of
||The president bore the honorable title
Besides the president, there were also:
||A vice-president, called the
“head" or "father of the house of judgment.”
||Another important official, whose
business it was to assist in the declaration of the law.
||Two or three secretaries.
||Other subordinate officials –
two of which are mentioned in the New Testament:
||Servants of the high priest
||According to Josephus, in the
time of Christ the Sanhedrin was formally led by the Sadducean high
priests, but practically ruled by the Pharisees.
||The Pharisees were the more popular
with the people.
||They were more and more represented in
the Sanhedrin as they grew in importance.
||In the time of Christ the Sanhedrin
exercised not only civil jurisdiction, according to Jewish
but also, in some degree, criminal.
||It could deal with all those judicial
that could not be completely handled by lower courts.
||It could deal with all those legal and
that the Roman procurator had not specially reserved for himself.
||It was the final court of appeal
for all questions connected with the Mosaic Law.
||It had the right of determining
questions of peace or war.
||It had the right of capital punishment
until about 40 years (30A.D.) before the destruction of Jerusalem
that was destroyed in 70A.D.
||The Meetings were conducted according
to strict rules:
||They could meet on any day except the
Sabbath and holy days.
||23 members formed a quorum.
||While a bare majority might acquit, a
majority of 2 was necessary to secure condemnation (unless all 71
members were present, then only a majority of 1 was required).
The conversation between Jesus and Nicodemus might be better understood
if viewed through this outline:
admitted Jesus came from God
Must be born again
How can I enter my mothers womb and be born again?
Born of Spirit and of water
"Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God;
for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him."
With this confession the statement is made that the religious rulers of
Judea knew that Jesus was of God.
||be born from above
to procreate (properly, of the father, but by extension of
the mother); figuratively, to regenerate:
From Root - Strong's NT:1096
to cause to be, to become (come into being)
from above; anew
New Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded
Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright (c) 1994, Biblesoft and
International Bible Translators, Inc.)
John 3:3 - Amplified Bible
Jesus answered him, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, that unless a
person is born again (anew, from above), he cannot ever see (know, be
acquainted with, and experience) the kingdom of God.
Born of Water
||genneethee ex hudatos
||be born of water
|From Strong's NT:5204
water (as if rainy) literally or figuratively
From Base - Strong's NT:5205
from a primary huo (to rain); rain,
especially a shower
Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded
Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright (c) 1994, Biblesoft and
International Bible Translators, Inc.)
Or - born of water from above
Speaks of spiritual cleansing
||of the Spirit
|From Strong's NT:4151
a current of air, i.e. breath (blast) or a breeze;
|Strong's 4154 pneo (pneh'-o)
a primary word; to breathe hard, i.e. breeze
|Strong's NT:5594 psucho (psoo'-kho)
a primary verb; to breathe (voluntarily but gently),
thus differing on the from NT:4154, which denotes properly a
And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the
ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man
became a living being. (NKJV)
||into his nostrils and breathed
|Breathed - From Strong's OT:5301
a primitive root; to puff, in various applications
literally, to inflate, blow hard, scatter, kindle,
|(Biblesoft's New Exhaustive Strong's
Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary.
Copyright (c) 1994, Biblesoft and International Bible Translators,
|Creation of natural man in Adam
||God breathed the breath of life
||Adam had no choice
|Creation of spiritual man in Christ
||God breathes the breath of life
||We can choose
...of the flesh ... of the Spirit
||From Strong's NT:1537
a primary preposition denoting origin (the point whence
action or motion proceeds)
Even so must the Son
of Man be lifted up
This is the second time Jesus speaks of His death.
This time He specifies
||Lifted up on a pole
||That whoever believes in Him should not perish but
have eternal life
His reference is to Numbers 21:9
So Moses made a bronze serpent, and put it on a pole; and so it was, if
a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze serpent, he
From our Lord's words we may learn:
(from Adam Clarke's Commentary, Electronic Database.
Copyright (c) 1996 by Biblesoft)
||That as the serpent was lifted up on the pole or
|so Jesus Christ was lifted up on the cross.
||That as the Israelites were to look at the brazen
|so sinners must look to Christ for salvation.
||That as God provided no other remedy than this
looking for the wounded Israelites,
|so he has provided no other way of salvation
than faith in the blood of his Son.
||That as he who looked at the brazen serpent was
cured and did live,
|so he that believeth on the Lord Jesus Christ
shall not perish, but have eternal life.
||That as neither the serpent, nor looking at it, but
the invisible power of GOD healed the people,
|so neither the cross of Christ, nor his
merely being crucified, but the pardon he has bought by his
blood, communicated by the powerful energy of his Spirit,
saves the souls of men.
"Much as the serpent was lifted up on that pole, so the
Son of God would be lifted up on a cross. Why? To save us from sin and
death. In the camp of Israel, the solution to the "serpent problem" was
not in killing the serpents, making medicine, pretending they were not
there, passing anti-serpent laws, or climbing the pole. The answer was in
looking by faith at the uplifted serpent."
(from The Bible Exposition Commentary. Copyright (c) 1989 by
SP Publications, Inc. All rights reserved., Biblesoft)
John 3; John 3:6-13; John 3:14-21;
(from The Bible Exposition Commentary. Copyright (c) 1992 by SP
Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.)
||The Necessity for the New Birth
||It is necessary to see (experience) the
kingdom of God
||It is necessary to enter the kingdom of God
||The Nature of the New Birth
||The new birth is a spiritual birth
||It is a mysterious birth
||It is a real birth
||The Basis for the New Birth
||Christ had to die
||Sinners have to believe
(22) After these things Jesus and His disciples came into the
land of Judea, and there He remained with them and baptized.
(23) Now John also was baptizing in Aenon near Salim, because
there was much water there. And they came and were baptized. (24) For
John had not yet been thrown into prison.
This must be compared with chapter 4:2, where the word “but” is from the
Greek “alla” which can be translated:
What they did, by His authority and command, is attributed to Himself.
It is a common custom, in all countries and in all languages, to
attribute the operations of those who are under the government and
direction of another to him by whom they are directed and governed.
Some however suppose that Christ at first did baptize; but, when He got
disciples, He left this work to them: and thus these two places are to be
|This place, John 3:22, before He called the 12
|Chapter 4:2, the baptism administered by the
disciples, after Christ had called them to the work.
And others suppose that Jesus only baptized His disciples, and after
that the disciples did the baptizing.
Aenon near to Salim
||The word “aenon” is probably an adjectival form
from the familiar “ain” (eye, sprint),
meaning simply “abounding in springs” or “fountains.”
||The situation of Salim is disputed:
|In the time of Eusebius Salim was
identified with a place on the confines of Galilee and Samaria
on the west of Jordan, 6 or 8 miles south of Scythopolis.
|A place bearing the name of
“Aynun” has been found not far from a valley abounding in
springs to the north of the
Salim which lies not far to the
east of Nebulous.
(25) Then there arose a dispute between some of
John's disciples and the Jews about purification. (26)
And they came to John and said to him, "Rabbi, He who was with you
beyond the Jordan, to whom you have testified -- behold, He is
baptizing, and all are coming to Him!"
(27) John answered and said, "A man can receive
nothing unless it has been given to him from heaven. (28)
You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, 'I am not the Christ,'
but, 'I have been sent before Him.' (29) He who has the
bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who
stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom's
voice. Therefore this joy of mine is fulfilled. (30) He
must increase, but I must decrease. (31) He who comes
from above is above all; he who is of the earth is earthly and
speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all.
(32) And what He has seen and heard, that He testifies; and no
one receives His testimony. (33) He who has received His
testimony has certified that God is true. (34) For He
whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God does not give the
Spirit by measure. (35) The Father loves the Son, and
has given all things into His hand. (36) He who believes
in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son
shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."
The subject of debate seems to have been whether the baptism of John, or that of Christ, was the most efficacious towards purifying – not a
matter of the ceremonial purifications of the Jewish law.
We cannot but believe that Jesus explained to those who offered
themselves to Him about the new birth that John’s baptism and this
preparatory baptism typified. In this way nothing would be more natural
than that some Jew*, a direct disciple, should be led to disparage the
work of John, contrasting it with that of which Jesus spoke; and that
thereupon John’s disciples, jealous for their master’s honor, should come
to him complaining of the position that Jesus had taken.
* The A.V. has “the Jews” – however the Greek word here is “Ioudaiou,”
which is singular.
Therefore, the R.V. has translated it “a Jew.” In this
case, it would most likely indicate a man who was a direct convert of
The friend of the bridegroom
|“The friend of the bridegroom” was the person
selected by the bridegroom to conduct the marriage negotiations on
|It was he who carried messages between the
bridegroom and the bride during the time of the betrothal.
|When, on the occasion of the marriage, they
were brought to see each other in a private room or under a
canopy provided for the purpose, the “friend of the
bridegroom” stood without, eager to catch the first
words of delight that came from the bridegroom’s lips,
expressive of the satisfaction he experienced on conversing
with his betrothed.
|This position John the Baptist claims for himself
figuratively. He is not the Christ, but bears a relation to him
similar to that borne by the “friend” to the bridegroom.
|He makes the arrangements for bringing
Christ, the bridegroom, to the Church, His bride.
|He waits with reverence and respect to hear
words of joy coming from the lips of Christ because He has
found a waiting and a willing Church.
|As the services of the “friend” only occupied a
short time, so the Baptist’s mission would soon be over. As he said
in verse 30, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”
John speaking about himself and Jesus.
EXCERPTS FROM FARRAR
|Two great Teachers, of whom one had testified to the other as the promised
Messiah, were baptizing large multitudes of people. Some Jew had annoyed
the disciples of John with a dispute about purification, and they vented
their perplexed and mortified feelings in a complaint to their great
The significant suppression of the name, the tone of irritation at what
appeared to them an encroachment, the scarcely subdued resentment that any
one should be a successful rival to him whose words had for a season so
deeply stirred the hearts of men, are all apparent in this querulous
|“Rabbi, He who was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou hast
borne witness, lo HE is baptizing, and all men are coming to HIM.”
And in the noble answer to it, all John’s inherent greatness
shone forth. He could not enter into rivalries, which would be a treachery
against his deepest convictions, a falsification of his most solemn words.
He remained them of his asseveration that
He was not the Christ, but only His messenger; he was not the Bridegroom,
but the Bridegroom’s friend, and his heart was even now being gladdened by
the bridegroom’s voice.
|God was the sole source of human gifts, and
in His sight there can be no such thing as human greatness.
Henceforth he was content to decrease; content that his little light
should be swallowed up in the boundless Dawn. He was but an earthly
messenger; but he had put the seal of his most intense conviction to the
belief that God was true, and had given all things to His Son, and that
through Him alone could eternal life be won.
(1) Therefore, when the Lord knew that the
Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than
John (2) (though Jesus Himself did not baptize, but His
disciples), (3) He left Judea and departed again to
Galilee. (4) But He needed to go through Samaria.
(5) So He came to a city of Samaria which is
called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son
Joseph. (6) Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus therefore,
being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. It was about
the sixth hour.
(7) A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her,
"Give Me a drink." (8) For His disciples had gone away
into the city to buy food.
(9) Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, "How
is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan
woman?" For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.
(10) 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."
(11) The woman said to Him, "Sir, You have
nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get
that living water? (12) Are You greater than our father
Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as
his sons and his livestock?"
(13) Jesus answered and said to her, "Whoever
drinks of this water will thirst again, (14) but whoever
drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the
water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water
springing up into everlasting life."
(15) The woman said to Him, "Sir, give me this
water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw."
(16) Jesus said to her, "Go, call your husband,
and come here."
(17) The woman answered and said, "I have no
Jesus said to her, "You have well said, 'I have no husband,'18 for
you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not
your husband; in that you spoke truly."
(19) The woman said to Him, "Sir, I perceive that
You are a prophet. (20) Our fathers worshiped on this
mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one
ought to worship."
(21) Jesus said to her, "Woman, believe Me, the
hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in
Jerusalem, worship the Father. (22) You worship what you
do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews.
(23) But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true
worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the
Father is seeking such to worship Him. (24) God is
Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."
(25) The woman said to Him, "I know that Messiah
is coming" (who is called Christ). "When He comes, He will tell us
(26) Jesus said to her, "I who speak to you am
(27) And at this point His disciples came, and
they marveled that He talked with a woman; yet no one said, "What do
You seek?" or, "Why are You talking with her?"
(28) The woman then left her waterpot, went her
way into the city, and said to the men, (29) "Come, see
a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the
Christ?" (30) Then they went out of the city and came to
(31) In the meantime His disciples urged Him,
saying, "Rabbi, eat."
(32) But He said to them, "I have food to eat of
which you do not know."
(33) Therefore the disciples said to one another,
"Has anyone brought Him anything to eat?"
(34) Jesus said to them, "My food is to do the
will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work. (35) Do
you not say, 'There are still four months and then comes the
harvest'? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the
fields, for they are already white for harvest! (36) And
he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life,
that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together.
(37) For in this the saying is true: 'one sows and another
reaps.' (38) I sent you to reap that for which you have
not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their
(39) And many of the Samaritans of that city
believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, "He
told me all that I ever did." (40) So when the
Samaritans had come to Him, they urged Him to stay with them; and He
stayed there two days. (41) And many more believed
because of His own word.
(42) Then they said to the woman, "Now we
believe, not because of what you said, for we ourselves have heard
Him and we know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the
The country of Samaria occupied a rough square of some 40 miles north and
south by 35 miles east and west.
The western flank, generally poor country, falls away from the summits in
a slope more gradual than that of the Judean highlands. Access is easy,
and little history gathered round slopes so indefensible and sterile.
Over the divide, the one conspicuous pass is that in which
between Mounts Ebal and Gerizim. It crosses the range and merges into the
valley swinging south to Jordan, dividing the eastern flank of Mount
Ephraim into two portions, a close-piled bulwark of high country to the
south, and an open series of broad valleys to the north.
The country was too open for successful defense. Hence, the frequency with
which the chariot is mentioned in the annals of the northern kingdom, and
ease with which surrounding paganism poured into the life of the northern
He needed to go through Samaria
Being already in the north of Judaea, He chose the route that led
The fanaticism of Jewish hatred, the fastidiousness of
Jewish Pharisaism, which led His countrymen when traveling alone to avoid
that route could have no existence for Him, and were things rather to be
discouraged than approved.
From Jerusalem to Galilee through Samaria, according to Josephus, was 3
The pilgrims traveled this route usually only in caravans.
||This was the ancient city of
||It seems to have been situated at the foot of Mt. Gerizim, in the
province of Samaria, on which the temple of the Samaritans was built.
||It was about 10 miles from Shiloh, 40 from
Jerusalem, and 52 from Jericho.
||It probably got the name of Sychar, which signifies “drunken” from the
drunkenness of its inhabitants.
With this crime the Prophet Isaiah (Isa. ch. 28) solemnly charges the
Ephraimites, within whose limits the city stood.
||Sychar is remarkable in the Scriptures:
||This is where Abram first stopped on his
coming from Haran to Canaan.
||This is where God first appeared to Abram and
promised to give the land to his seed.
||This is where Abram first built an altar to
the Lord, and called upon His name.
||Jacob bought this field from the children of Hamor, the father of
||There Jacob built an altar, which he
dedicated to “El Elohey Yishrael,” the strong God,
the covenant God of Israel.
||This land Jacob left as a private or over
plus inheritance to Joseph and his children.
||Jacob’s well was there
A quote from Mr. Maundrell:
This report was from the 18 hundreds. Since then the well has been
repaired to some extent, and buildings have been built around it. The well
itself is now inside a building.
|“About one-third of an hour from Naplosa, the
ancient Sychar and Sychem, stood Jacob’s well. If it be inquired, whether
this be the very place, seeing it may be suspected to stand too remote
from Sychar for the women to come and draw water, we may answer – that, in
all probability, the city extended farther in former times than it does
now, as may be conjectured from some pieces of a very thick wall, the
remains perhaps of the ancient Sychem, still to be seen not far from
hence. Over it stood formerly a large church, erected by the Empress
Irene; but of this the voracity of time, assisted by the hands of the
Turks, has left nothing but a few foundations remaining. The well is
covered at present with an old stone vault, into which you are let down by
a very strit hole; and then, removing a broad flat stone, you discover the
well itself. It is dug in a firm rock, is about three yards in diameter, and thirty five in depth, five feet of which we found full of water.
At this well the narrow valley of Sychem ends, opening itself into a wide
field, which probably is part of the ground given by Jacob to his son
Joseph. It is watered by a fresh stream, running between it and Sychem, which makes it exceedingly verdant and fruitful.”
The sixth hour
12:00 noon, which was the ordinary time of dinner among the Jews.
A woman of Samaria came
||Held in low esteem by the Jewish
||Despised by the Jews
||For drawing water was not performed by
women of station
(their servants performed that service)
||Of ill Repute
||Or she would have come to the well at
the early hour when the other women came
Jews have no dealings with Samaritans
Racially the Samaritans are difficult to identify:
||In 721 B.C. Sargon of Assyria destroyed Samaria.
||On the walls of the royal palace at Dur-Sarraku (Khorsabad) he recorded
the fact, and his subsequent policy of depopulation, deportation, and
“In my first year of reign…the people of Samaria…to the
number of 27,290 I carried away…The city I rebuilt – I made it greater
than it was before. People of lands which I had conquered I settled
therein. My tartan I placed over them as governor.”
||The newcomers from the north may be presumed to
have intermarried with the Israelite remnant, and ultimately
the population took the general name of Samaritans.
The completeness of the devastation left by the Assyrian invasion is
evident from the infestation of wild beasts of which the immigrants
complained. Superstitiously, the intruders concluded that “the god of the
land” was angry at their presence and their ignorance of His propitiatory
rites. They sent to the Assyrian monarch and asked him to select a priest
from among the deportees to instruct them in the necessary ritual of
worship. The king (Esarhaddon) acceded to the request, and some
instruction in the faith of Jehovah penetrated the stricken district. It
was a mixed religion that resulted – “They feared Jehovah, and served
their own gods.”
After the return from captivity, enmity became inveterate between the
Samaritans and the Jewish remnant of Ezra and Nehemiah.
||On the strength of their worship of Jehovah,
the Samaritans sought a share in the rebuilding of the temple in
Jerusalem, but were firmly rebuffed.
||Sanballat son-in-law was Manasseh, grandson of the Jewish high priest, and Nehemiah’s drive for racial purity led to the expulsion of this young
man from Jerusalem.
||By Manasseh’s emigration with a considerable band
of dissident Jews to Samaria, the rift between the peoples,
politically and religiously, was made permanent.
||Manasseh persuaded the Samaritans to abandon many
of their idolatrous practices, and with Sanballat building on Mt. Gerizim of a temple for his
son-in-law, the sect of the Samaritans was established.
||It was from this time that Samaria became a refuge
for malcontent Jews, with the consequent use of “Samaritan”
as a term of abuse for a dissident rebel.
The religion of the Samaritans was based on the Pentateuch alone
(Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy).
The firm answer of Jesus (v. 21-23) stressed:
||The incompleteness of the Samaritan tradition.
||Their inadequate revelation.
||The common transience of the cherished beliefs of
both Samaritan and Jew.
The greatness of Jesus is shown in the story, for at no time had the
bitterness between Samaritan and Jew been greater:
||At one Passover during the governorship of Coponius (A.D. 6-9), when, according to annual custom, the gates of the temple were opened at
midnight, some Samaritans had intruded and polluted the holy place by
scattering human bones in the porches.
||Samaritans were thereafter excluded from the
||They were cursed in the temple.
||Their food was considered unclean, even as
||The whole situation narrated in John 4 is therefore
||The buying of food in Sychar
||The conversation at Jacob’s well
||The subsequent evangelization of the area
||It is a magnificent illustration of the emancipation
that Christianity was to being to those grown immobile in the bondage
Marveled that He talked with the woman
Their astonishment was not only because of the non-relationship of the
Jews and the Samaritans, but also because it was unusual for a Jewish
teacher to converse with women in a public place. The rabbins expressed
their contempt for women by teaching that they were not to be saluted or
spoken to in the street, and they were not to be instructed in the law.
|Jesus & Nicodemus
|John & his Disciples
|Jesus & the Samaritan Woman
|Unless one is born again, he cannot SEE
the kingdom of God."
||He that believeth not shall not SEE
|Unless one is born of water and the
Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God
||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
The water that I shall give him
will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting
|We speak what We know and testify what We
have seen, and you do not receive Our witness.
||And what He has seen and heard, that He
testifies; and no one receives His testimony.
||We know what we worship
|No one has ascended to heaven but He who
came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven.
|Whoever believes in Him should not perish
but have eternal life.
||He who believes in the Son has
|He who believes in Him is not condemned;
but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not
believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
||He who does not believe the Son shall not
see life, but the wrath of God abides on him
||God is Spirit, and those who worship Him
must worship in spirit and truth.
Compare the spiritual bread of which Jesus spoke when His disciples
wanted Him to eat (4:31-34)
||Thomas calls Jesus both Lord and God
||Jesus is called both the Christ, and
the Son of God
||The throne is said to be that of both
God and the Lamb,
whom are both referred to in that same verse as “Him.”
God is Spirit
The Greek has it: “pneuma o Theos” – or “God is spirit:”
||Absolutely free from all limitations of space and
||The nature and not the personality of
God is described, just as in the phrases,
|“God is light”
|“God is love”
||(1 John 4:8)
||This premise is drawn from a true interpretation
of the Old revelation (Isaiah 31:3),
but the conclusion that follows belongs to the New
In Spirit and In Truth
As he made all creatures, so all owe Him obedience and reverence; but, to
be acceptable to his infinite Spirit, the worship must be:
||Of a SPIRITUAL
||It must spring from the heart,
through the influence of the Holy Ghost.
||Not only in sincerity, but
performed according to that Divine Revelation that He has given men
The words describe the characteristics of worship in one complex phrase
and not in two co-ordinate phrases. Worship involves:
||An expression of feeling
||A conception of the object towards whom the feeling
Lift up your eyes and look at the fields ... white for harvest
Grain, when ripe, turns from a green to a yellow or light
color, indicating that it is time to reap it.
By lifting up their eyes the disciples could see a harvest already white
(the approaching Samaritans in their white desert robes), the result
of his sowing.
Excerpts from Farrar
From the NKJV
|He a Jew,
He a Rabbi,
|talking to “a woman,”
and that woman a Samaritan,
and that Samaritan a sinner!
Yet they (His disciples, returned from town)
dared not question Him. The sense of His majesty, the love and the faith
His very presence breathed, overshadowed all minor doubts or wondering
Meanwhile the woman, forgetting even her water-pot in her impetuous
amazement, had hurried to the city with her wondrous story. Here was one
who had revealed to her the very secrets of her life. Was not this the
The Samaritans instantly flocked out of the city at her words, and while
they were seen approaching, the disciples urged our Lord to eat, for the
hour of noon was now past, and He had had a weary walk. But all hunger had
been satisfied in the exaltation of His ministry. “I have food to eat,” He
said, “which ye know not.” Might they not have understood that, from
childhood upwards, He had not lived by bread alone? But again we find the
same dull, hard, stolid literalism. Their Scriptures, the very idiom in
which they spoke, were full of vivid metaphors, yet they could hit on no
deeper explanation of His meaning than that perhaps some one had brought
Him something to eat. How hard must it have been for Him at every turn to
find even in His chosen ones such a strange incapacity to se that material
images were but the vehicles for deep spiritual thoughts. But there was no
impatience in Him who was meek and lowly of heart.
And then pointing to the inhabitants of Sichem, as they streamed to Him
over the plain, He continued, “You talk of there being yet four months to
harvest. Look at these fields, white already for the spiritual harvest. Ye
shall be the joyful reapers of the harvest that I thus have sown in toil
(12) Now when Jesus
heard that John had been put in prison,
(14) Now after John was
put in prison,
(19) But Herod the tetrarch,
being rebuked by him concerning Herodias, his brother Philip's
wife, and for all the evils which Herod had done, (20)
also added this, above all, that he shut John up in prison.
He departed to Galilee. (13)
And leaving Nazareth, He came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is by
the sea, in the regions of Zebulun and Naphtali, (14) that it
might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying:
(15) "The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali,
By the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan,
Galilee of the Gentiles:
(16) The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light,
And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death
Light has dawned."
(43) Now after the two days
He departed from there and went to Galilee. (44) For
Jesus Himself testified that a prophet has no honor in his own
(45) So when He
came to Galilee, the Galileans received Him, having seen all the
things He did in Jerusalem at the feast; for they also had gone to
From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, "Repent, for the
kingdom of heaven is at hand."
preaching the gospel of
the kingdom of God, (15) and saying, "The time is
fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe
in the gospel."
the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee.
||That it was a town of considerable size in the days
of Jesus is shown by a number of facts:
|A Tax collector had his office there (Mark
|A high officer of the king (Herod Antipas)
had his residence there and built a synagogue for the people
there (Matt. 8:5-13; Luke 7:1-10).
|Jesus made His headquarters during
His ministry here:
||Here He healed the
centurion’s palsied servant.
||Here the man sick of the
palsy was let down to Him.
||Here He healed the
||Here He called Matthew to
||Here was delivered the
discourse on the Bread of Life, following the feeding of
||Here were delivered many
||In spite of Jesus’ striking works and teachings,
the people did not repent, and Jesus predicted the complete ruin of
the place (Matt. 11:23,24; Luke 10:15).
||His prophecy was so completely fulfilled that the
town has disappeared and its very site is a matter of debate.
(46) So Jesus came again to Cana of Galilee where He
had made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman whose son
was sick at Capernaum. (47) When he heard that Jesus had
come out of Judea into Galilee, he went to Him and implored Him to
come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death.
(48) Then Jesus said to him, "Unless
you people see signs and wonders, you will by no means believe."
(49) The nobleman said to Him, "Sir, come down
before my child dies!"
(50) Jesus said to him, "Go
your way; your son lives." So the man believed the word that
Jesus spoke to him, and he went his way. (51) And as he
was now going down, his servants met him and told him, saying, "Your
(52) Then he inquired of them the hour when he
got better. And they said to him, "Yesterday at the seventh hour the
fever left him." (53) So the father knew that it was at
the same hour in which Jesus said to him, "Your son lives." And he
himself believed, and his whole household.
(54) This again is the second sign Jesus did when
He had come out of Judea into Galilee.
An officer in the service of the king (Herod Antipas).
“basilikos” is used by Josephus for any person employed at court.
Vulgate translates it regulus, a little king.
have conjectured that this office was Chuze, “Herod’s steward” (Luke 8:3),
or Manaen, Herod’s foster brother (Acts 8:1).
Signs and Wonders
They mark the two chief aspects of miracles:
||The Spiritual aspect
||whereby they suggest some
deeper truth than meets the eye, of which they are in some sense
symbols and pledges.
||The External aspect
||whereby their strangeness arrests
Except ye see signs
This was spoken not to the nobleman only, but to the Galileans
The Samaritans had believed without any miracle.
The Galileans, he said, were less disposed to believe him than
even they were; and... unless they continually saw miracles,
they would not believe.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)
The second sign
This is not the second sign that Jesus did in His ministry.
It is the
second sign He did in Cana.
Separated by the visit to Jerusalem.
the two He had worked miracles in Judaea and Capernaum.