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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 8 No.20 Messages From Heaven! #6

 

He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:30

We saw last time that John the Baptizer testified that Jesus was the Son of God, and that “He” would increase while John himself would decrease. In fact, Herod would put John to death not long after this time, so let’s not miss the import of John’s message. While John was speaking of the physical realm, the principle is also true in the spiritual realm. When we come to Jesus in repentance and faith, yielding our will to His, and surrendering our control to Him—knowing the more we yield to Him the more His power and presence increase in our lives, and the more our will can decrease. It’s the same principle that Paul talked to the Galatians about:

I am crucified with Christ:

nevertheless I live;

yet not I,

but Christ liveth in me:

and the life which I now live

in the flesh

I live

by the faith of the Son of God,

who loved me,

and gave himself

for me.” Galatians 2:20

And we see this message painted out in the examples in John 4. Here we find a woman who was consumed with her own ways—ways of delusion, disappointment, doubt and discouragement due to a life out of control. Yet her life had a “changer” on the way, a Savior who would change her life, her heart and her influence. And on top of all of that, she was a woman of Samaria—those hated by the Jews– yet Jesus, in love, had an appointment there, a divine appointment with an outcast, immoral woman (Like me!).

And he must needs go through Samaria.”    John 4:4

Why would Jesus “need” to go through Samaria? Because there was someone there He intended to encounter with an amazing “Message from Heaven”! While John 3 finds Jesus revealing to Nicodemus that He had come to save those who would believe, and John the Baptizer clearly gave testimony that Jesus was/is the Son of God, Jesus intended to reveal even more truth at this ‘appointment’. Let’s dig in.

Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.

There cometh a woman of Samaria

to draw water:

Jesus saith unto her,

Give me to drink.

(For his disciples were gone away

unto the city to buy meat.)

Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him,

How is it that thou,

being a Jew,

askest drink of me,

which am a woman of Samaria?

for the Jews have no dealings

with the Samaritans.

10 Jesus answered and said unto her,

If thou knewest the gift of God,

and who it is that saith to thee,

Give me to drink;

thou wouldest have asked of him,

and he would have given thee

living water.

11 The woman saith unto him,

Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with,

and the well is deep:

from whence then

hast thou

that living water?

12 Art thou greater

than our father Jacob,

which gave us the well,

and drank thereof himself,

and his children,

and his cattle?

13 Jesus answered and said unto her,

Whosoever drinketh

of this water

shall thirst again:

14 But whosoever drinketh

of the water

that I shall give him

shall never thirst;

but the water

that I shall give him

shall be

in him

a well of water

springing up

into everlasting life.”    John 4:6-14

We find Jesus sitting alone at the well of Sychar, when this woman comes to draw water. The question comes to mind, why would she come alone, and why at noon rather than in the cool of the morning or evening? It is very likely that this woman’s past had caused her to be an outcast among the women of the town, and it was simpler for her to go and draw water at noon rather than to endure the snide remarks and rejection that would be normal fare if she went to draw water with the women of the city. We do know that she was there alone with Jesus for this encounter, and Jesus was never anywhere by chance or mistake! Amen!

Jesus begins the conversation with this woman with a simple request for a drink of water. Oh, how much we could learn from the Master about how to handle our encounters with people God sends our way. We don’t have to be a great orator or evangelist, we simply need to encounter people with the simple things of life, and be ready with the Good News as the opportunities presents itself. This woman, like us, is only seeing the physical, she is seeing only with her eyes, not her heart—yet! But Jesus has a plan as He piques her interest by talking about “water” that will spring up and quench thirst “eternally”! Now she becomes the one asking questions. Yet what He is about to reveal openly and clearly for the fist time, that we have a record of, is the greatest “Message from Heaven” ever, and this lowly, sinful Samaritan woman has been chosen to receive the message!

The woman saith unto him,

Sir, give me this water,

that I thirst not,

neither come hither to draw.

16 Jesus saith unto her,

Go,

call thy husband,

and come hither.

17 The woman answered and said,

I have no husband.

Jesus said unto her,

Thou hast well said,

I have no husband:

18 For thou hast had five husbands;

and he whom thou now hast

is not thy husband:

in that saidst thou truly.

19 The woman saith unto him,

Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.

20 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain;

and ye say, that in Jerusalem

is the place where men

ought to worship.

21 Jesus saith unto her,

Woman, believe me,

the hour cometh,

when ye shall neither

in this mountain,

nor yet at Jerusalem,

worship the Father.

22 Ye worship ye know not what:

we know what we worship:

for salvation is of the Jews.

23 But the hour cometh,

and now is,

when the true worshippers

shall worship the Father

in spirit

and in truth:

for the Father seeketh

such to worship him.

24 God is a Spirit:

and they that worship him

must worship him

in spirit

and in truth.

25 The woman saith unto him,

I know that Messias cometh,

which is called Christ:

when he is come,

he will tell us

all things.

26 Jesus saith unto her,

I that speak unto thee am he.” John 4:15-26

What an amazing encounter; yet this woman (again like most of us) is still perceiving only the physical, and she asks for this water, but why?

Sir, give me this water,

that I thirst not,

neither come hither to draw.

She simply wanted to have her physical needs met, and to save her time and energies for other things than having to come to the well every day to draw water. But what Jesus had to tell her would go much farther and be of more import than to simply save a few steps, and meet physical needs. Jesus was talking about greater water than H2O! But what a unique way to turn her attention to the spiritual; Jesus now asks about her personal life. “Go, call thy husband, and come hither”! Jesus turned her attention to her heart condition, and while her answer was still in the physical somewhat, Jesus uses this opportunity to reveal himself to the brokenness within her heart. In her answer that “I have no husband”, she has finally opened her heart to The One who already knew her condition, but He is leading her to see her own condition as God sees it. And only when we see our lost, sinful condition, will we recognize our need for a Savior.

As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.” Romans 3:10-11

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Romans 3:23

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23

Jesus was bringing this precious woman—this outcast from her society, but loved by God—to encounter the Savior of the world, the Son of God, in fact Jesus would give her a distinction that would amaze even His disciples. He was not only talking to a woman (something that wasn’t done in that day), but He was talking to a Samaritan woman, an immoral woman. What did Jesus have to say to her?

For thou hast had five husbands;

and he whom thou now hast

is not thy husband:

in that saidst thou truly.

Jesus knew this woman and her issues, and this revelation is finally getting her thoughts to turn to her real need, not just her “thirst”! She begins to question who this man is, who can tell her the truth about herself. Yet, I find it most interesting that she attempts to distract Jesus from her own “sin”, and brings up the subject of “denominational” differences (so to speak)—who is right about where to worship! But Jesus is not deterred from His mission of revealing Himself to her. He answers her question with the truth of “Who” God really is—The God who is seeking those who desire to worship Himin spirit and in truth”! And remember, we know “WHO” truth is—Jesus! And this woman is about to find that out! Amen, and Praise the Lord—He’s still revealing Himself to sinners today!

But the hour cometh,

and now is,

when the true worshippers

shall worship the Father

in spirit

and in truth:

for the Father seeketh

such to worship him.

God knows how to reach those willing to hear and receive His “message”! And God knows those who are truly His own—those who truly receive His saving grace!

Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.”    2 Timothy 2:19

This precious woman is about to understand, while she has asked Jesus if He is greater than Jacob, now she asks about the promised Messiah, knowing that “he will tell us all things”! Finally, she has asked the right question, of the right person, and HE is about to reveal to this precious outcast woman the truth of the ages—redeeming grace!

Jesus saith unto her,  

I that speak unto thee am he”!!!!!

Jesus IS the Messiah—the Lamb of God, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (See John 1:29)! And that my friends, IS the “Message From Heaven”, and it is the message that we must share with confidence and boldness. Let’s be busy about the “Father’s business”! The days are short and the time of HIS coming is near—we surely want to hear “well done” when He comes for us!

But let’s not miss the rest of the story. What was the woman’s response—because as great as the message IS, we must respond in repentance and faith to the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord as the payment for OUR SIN!!! Those who receive Jesus for who HE IS, can’t help but share the truth of His life-changing, transforming power. What did this woman do?

The woman then left her waterpot,

and went her way into the city,

and saith to the men,

29 Come, see a man,

which told me

all things that ever I did:

is not this the Christ?

30 Then they went out of the city,

and came unto him.” John 4:28-30

She spread the message! And I find it interesting that when she went to share the message she had just heard and received, she says that Jesus “told me all things that ever I did”, yet Jesus’ conversation only dealt with one of her issues—yet when we come to Jesus HE cleanses us of ALL sin! He cleans us up from top to bottom, and that’s what this woman had found in Him, and she readily shares the Good News. And at her testimony they went out to hear Him, invite Him into their city and received His message. It’s amazing what can happen when we encounter the Savior and receive His salvation and then share it with others.

And many of the Samaritans

of that city

believed on him

for the saying of the woman,

which testified,

He told me all that ever I did.

40 So when the Samaritans were come unto him,

they besought him

that he would tarry with them:

and he abode there two days.

41 And many more believed

because of his own word;

42 And said unto the woman,

Now we believe,

not because of thy saying:

for we have heard him ourselves,

and know that this is indeed

the Christ,

the Saviour of the world.

So let’s be bold to share the “Message From Heaven”-Jesus!