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Lesson # John 4:15-18
Study Material - John 4:15-18
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
15 The woman said to Him, 'Sir, give me this water, so I will not be thirsty, nor come all the way here to draw.' 16 He said to her, 'Go, call your husband, and come here.' 17 The woman answered and said, 'I have no husband.' 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; this you have said truly.'
Jesus intended this message for eternal life and a happy and fulfilling spiritual life after salvation. But the woman is still confused, or at least misinterpreting what He has to say. She is somewhat hesitant and expectant all at the same time. 'Give me this water', for what purpose? So she won't be thirsty again and won't have to haul water again. But she is still focused on the water in the well.
Even though her intentions were most likely well meant, the carnal person can think only in terms of carnal ends. She wants to ease her labor and work load as well as ease her need for water which is caused by her work.
So now Christ changes the subject to focus her attention on the things she is interested in and to which she can relate. Her husbands, her several husbands in fact as well as the current live in she has. A carnal person cannot focus on spiritual matters, and Christ has given her spiritual information which she did not grasp. So Jesus redirects her focus on her own sinful life. The heart must first see the sin and the failure before it can see the path out of the failure.
Jesus does not accuse her, or even condemn her for her many husbands. The circumstances of her husbands is not even mentioned. It is irrelevant. Too many people will try to remind you of your past failures, and keep reminding you in order to keep you down in the dust as it were. People are unforgiving and cruel. But here Christ simply redirects her attention to her personal life and allows her to evaluate herself. He also give her a chance to redeem herself, as we will see.
He instructs her to get her husband and bring him to the well. Why would He need the husband? Actually He doesn't want the husband, but He wants her to confront her own personal life by herself.
He could have meant, 'Call your husband, that he may teach you, and help you to understand these things, which you are ignorant of 'The wives that will learn must ask their husbands, 1 Cor 14:35, who must dwell with them as men of knowledge, 1 Peter 3:7. Or He could have meant, 'Call your husband, that he may learn with you; that then you may be heirs together of the grace of God. Or He could have meant 'Call your husband, that he may be a witness to what passes between us.' Christ would thus teach us to provide honest things in the sight of all men, and to study that which is good.
Remember that in the spiritual life, there is neither male nor female. These references are intended to teach us, all of us, that our state is one of loss and failure. That we need to look to one with wisdom and authority in which to learn. And that someone is Christ, our spiritual husband, and doctrine is the wisdom through which we learn and grow up.
So the actual husband is not required. Actually he does not exist in her case. But the principle of the husband and her respect for him, or perhaps in her case, her disrespect for a husband, is the issue. She has had five husbands prior to the current man she is living with. Living with someone outside of wedlock is a sin of course, and that is where she is in her life. In sin. Christ does not call for her to be stoned because of her sins. He does not condemn her for her past marriages, or even the number of them. Christ does not elaborate on them, whether they were legitimate marriages, whether she was divorced, or whether she initiated the divorce, whether she was a woman that was taken advantage of, or whether she was a woman that was hard to get along with.
She is honest in her answer, but incomplete in her answer. She has no husband, but she is living with someone and that is a not acceptable in the society of the day. Unlike today when living with someone outside of marriage is sort of a normal way of life and acceptable in society, or at least no big deal is made of the arrangements people choose. But to her, an admission of this kind of sin would not be wise.
Christ calls her on her answer and her honesty. He also gains her attention with His knowledge of her life. Five husbands and a current live in. Now He has her attention. Before they just had a conversation wherein she was not getting the picture from the conversation. Now He shocks her into focusing on what He has to say. Possibly in her community her reputation was known, but how could a perfect stranger, and a Jew at that, possibly know about her life.
We need to first see our flaws before we can be brought to Christ. Some people need just a little nudge. Some need quite a jolt. But the principle is the same. If we first recognize the futility of a life without God, then we are ready to receive Bible information which will guide us to the life God wishes us to have.
To remain stubborn against God is foolish. To acquire some degree of humility and then listen to the teaching of doctrine is the beginning of wisdom. Christ now has her attention.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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