By: Sarah Joyner
John 4:10, “…if you knew the gift of God…you would have asked him…” (ESV)
In his commentary on John 1-12 titled Be Alive, Warren W. Wiersbe offers a glimpse into the relationship between the Jews and Samaritans. He says, “So intense was their (Jews’) dislike of the Samaritans that some of the Pharisees prayed that no Samaritan would be raised in the resurrection!” (47). But Jesus brought with Him a revolution, and it is in His actions that we find a new way for loving all of our neighbors (those we find easy to like and those we find more difficult to like).
In John 4:7-10 Jesus meets the Samaritan woman at the well and asks her for a drink. The passage reads:
“A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, ‘Give me a drink.’ (For his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, ‘How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?’ (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) Jesus answered her, ‘If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water’” (ESV).
Jesus knows that the Samaritan woman is unaware of who He is, so He walks her through a series of points that will help her realize just who it is she is talking to. At one point, He tells her that if she would only ask Him, He would provide her with living water, a living water that will quench her thirst so that she is never thirsty again, a living water that will bless her with eternal life. He also talks to her about her past and current life situations as well as her theological beliefs. It is near the end of their conversation that the woman realizes she is in the presence of the Christ and runs to her hometown where she tells everyone what had happened and brings them to Jesus so they can witness Him too.
The statement that catches my attention in their conversation is when Jesus says, “If you knew the gift of God…you would have asked him…” Jesus has within Him the living water (the Holy Spirit) which He will gladly bless the Samaritan woman with, and which will quench her spiritual longing to know God forever, and all she has to do is know who she is speaking to and ask Him for the living water of which only He can provide.
How many people are living in ignorance of the gift that Jesus can offer them? How many people travel to the well for water on a daily basis instead of looking up and asking Jesus for the living water he carries within? And how many of us, who have known the gift of God and have received the living water have responded like the Samaritan woman, who ran to tell her whole town so that they too might have a chance at receiving the living water?
Lord, we thank you for never giving up on us and for going out of your way so that we might know you and the living water you have to offer. We thank for filling us with your Holy Spirit and satisfying our spiritual thirst. And we ask that you help us to be more like the Samaritan woman who could not contain her excitement and immediately ran to tell others about who and what she had found. And Lord we pray that the eyes and ears of those we run to will be opened to your Truth.