Then the woman left her water jar and went back to the city. She said to the people, “Come and see a man who told me everything I have ever done! He cannot be the Messiah, can he?” They left the city and were on their way to him. John 4:28-30
This passage immediately follows “The woman said to him, ‘I know that Messiah is coming’ (who is called Christ) When he comes, he will proclaim all things to us. Jesus said to her ” I am he, the one who is speaking to you.”
This whole story invites wonder. First of all, Jesus spoke to a Samaritan, which was not a cultural custom for Jews, and not only that, she’s a woman. The woman leaves her water jar and runs into town to tell people about her experience. She would not have left her water jar had she not intended to come back. It was a basic necessity and there was no Dollar Store. So she was running off with the intention of coming back. (As an aside, John must have been with Jesus to notice the water jar in the first place, a little acknowledged item of the truth of the story.) When she returned with other Samaritans, they asked Jesus to stay. Jesus stayed for two days, during which time the Samaritans asked questions and Jesus talked. The Samaritans acknowledged him as Savior of the world. For us the story of the Samaritan woman at the well speaks to faith: how we have it; what reinforces it; what makes it grow. The woman was amazed by all that Jesus knew about her. She knew the Messiah was coming. Jesus had just identified himself as the Messiah. But she wasn’t so certain she didn’t ask “He cannot be the Messiah, can he?” When the people from the village were around Jesus and listened to him, they believed. They said to the woman that their belief was no longer just from what she said, but from what they saw and heard Jesus say. Don’t we all have experiences that reinforce the faith we were taught or experiences that lead us to search out for more? My faith has been strengthened by witnessing faith at work in other people. Is it so for you?