Third Sunday of Lent: Exodus 17:3-7; Romans 5:1-2,5-8; John 4:5-42

Look beyond Moses to Jesus.
We read, in Exodus 17:3-8, about God’s provision of water for His people in the wilderness. We read about Moses’ leadership. Jesus is greater than Moses. He is more than a leader. He is the Saviour. He is “living water”  (see notes on John 4 – Jesus meets the woman at the well).

 “While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).Is this no longer true just because a lot of people have lost interest in singing the song of salvation?
No! This was Good News in Paul’s day. It’s still Good News for today.
It will always be the Good News of God’s love. It will always be the great reminder of God’s “for ever” love (Psalm 136).

Jesus meets the woman at the well.
Here, we see Jesus at work, sharing the Gospel, leading the Samaritan woman to faith. we see Jesus, bringing many Samaritans to faith (John 4:39; John 4:41-42). Notice how the situation develops. Jesus does not set out with the specific goal of speaking about the deep things of the faith to the first to the first person he meets. The story begins with a weary Man – Jesus, sitting down beside the well (John 4:6). There was, however, a deeper dimension. Jesus is walking in the Spirit. He is in the centre of the Father’s will. He is ready to speak the Word of the Lord whenever the opportunity presents itself.
The story continues with a very natural conversation-opener. Jesus says to the woman, “Give Me a drink” (John 4:7). It soon becomes clear that the deeper dimension – Jesus is walking in the Spirit – is about to influence the direction of the conversation. When we are walking in the Spirit, we must be ready for conversations to move in the direction of the things of God. The Spirit will give us opportunities to share the Good News of Christ with others. Jesus speaks of “living water” (John 4:10). When we have the life of Christ within us, the life of the Spirit in our hearts, we will be given opportunities to share that life with others. We share this life as we speak for Jesus. This sharing will, however, be more than a matter of words. It will be a matter of life – sharing the life which God has put into our hearts, sharing the life of Jesus.
With His whole life centred on doing the Father’s will – “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work ” (John 4:34), Jesus is ready for this opportunity to give to the woman the “living water” which He alone can give. As we go around, here and there, with this intention – to do the Lord’s will, we can expect God to use us to bring blessing to others. In this story, how does God use Jesus to fulfil His purpose? This is not only the story of one woman. It is the story of “many Samaritans” and “many more” (John 4:39; John 4:41). When we are faithful in sharing Jesus with one person, who knows what may result from this?
Many more believe. This is not because of the woman’s testimony. It is because of the Lord’s own Word. This is the work of the Holy Spirit. We give our testimony. Through our weak words, the Holy Spirit gives His testimony. The Holy Spirit uses our inadequate words to point men and women to the Lord Jesus. As the Holy Spirit works, the Church is created. When Jesus leaves Samaria, he does not leave behind only one believer. Through His Word, there are many believers. He leaves behind many believers. What strength and encouragement these believers received from each other as, together, they rejoiced in their new-found faith – Jesus Christ is “indeed the Saviour of the world” (John 4:42). This is our faith. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, we must encourage one another to go on in this faith.

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