Fourth Sunday of the Holy Lent – The Samaritan Woman

“Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst”. John 4:14

The Gospel reading for the fourth Sunday of Lent is John 4:1-42. It is a story of repentance in which Jesus has an encounter with a person whose life changes as a result of this encounter. This story is only found in the Gospel of John.

This was a face to face meeting between the evasive soul of humanity (represented by the Samaritan woman) and the Lord Jesus Christ. Humanity is always searching for happiness and imagines that it will find it in the false jollities of the world. The meeting with Jesus documents for us a very important concept. “The human spirit that lives in the false jollities of the world is not satiated, but is always thirsty”

This Gospel reading tells us many things:

Repentance – Meeting with God must be through repentance. The Samaritan woman, who was a liar, an adulterer, and a person who had lived an immoral life having five husbands, repents and preaches Christ to her own people. Repentance results in freedom from the slavery of sin, and the Samaritan woman demonstrates her freedom by eagerly telling her own people about Christ, as if she had just been freed from jail.

After repentance comes filling by Living Water. The repentance of the Samaritan woman allowed her to gain the blessing of the living water. Through the fast we become filled by the waves of the Living Water. Meditating on God’s word is a streaming well of Living Water! Prayers are like are a streaming well. The love of Jesus is like a well. Let us drink and be filled and overflow from these wells of Living Water.

After repentance and being filled by Living Water comes prostrations through spirit and truth. The church through the journey of the Lent provides us many opportunities for prostrations. Prostrations carry humility and submission to the Kingship of Christ.

The love of Christ – the way Jesus deals with this woman was critical in her repentance. Jesus is patient, He does not condemn or accuse, but rather He uplifts and encourages. Jesus was a Jew and Jews had no dealings with Samaritans. Jesus shows us that He is here to break the barriers of communication in order to win our hearts. It is Jesus who initiates the conversation and our relationship with Him. The Samaritan woman became an evangelist for Christ. “The woman then left her water pot, went her way into the city” (John 4:28). We also must be converted to become dedicated and evangelists for God and those who prostrate to Him. Those who go on the Journey of the fast, become silent missionaries through their worship, humility and submission.

Jesus slowly reveals Himself to those who are ready and able to accept Him. He does not tell the Samaritan woman that He is Christ until she is spiritually ready. He gradually builds up to it, educating and teaching her in His loving way until she is prepared to accept Him as the Christ.