Answers for the Gospel of John Chapter 4

About These Answers 

Questions and Answers

1. What was it that persuaded Jesus to leave Judea as shown at the beginning of Chapter 4 of the Gospel of John?

Jesus learned that a dispute arose among the Jews that pitted John the Baptist and his ministry against each another

2. What do we learn of the background of the Samaritan people from the following II Kings 17:22-41?

  • They sinned despite the LORD warning them through the prophets
  • So they were taken from their homeland into exile in Assyria
  • The king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath and Sepharvaim and settled them in the towns of Samaria to replace them
  • They took over Samaria and lived in its towns, and did not worship the LORD
  • God sent lions among them which killed them, so the king of Assyria sent a priest taken captive from Samaria to teach the people about the Lord
  • Nevertheless, each national group made its own gods in the several towns where they settled, and set them up in the shrines the people of Samaria had made at the high places
  • They worshiped the LORD, but they also served their own gods in accordance with the customs of the nations from which they had been brought and persisted in their former practices, even while these people were worshiping the LORD, they were serving their idols.

3. Do you see any irony in verses 7 through 15; If so, what is it?

Jesus asks the woman for a drink of water because he has nothing to draw water with; yet, then offers her living water, which if she drinks it she, will never thirst.

Questions and Answers

1. Describe what do you think may have been the Samaritan woman’s changing perception of Jesus from his questions or statements to her as outlined below:

  • "Will you give me a drink?"She thought he was very strange, perhaps crazy
  • "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."Now she really thought he was crazy because not only was he asking her for a drink but said he could give her a drink but had nothing to draw water with
  • "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."Now she thinks “OK let’s see what he can do”
  • "You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true."Now she realizes that the man she is speaking to is a prophet

2. What about a person’s physical appearance, social standing or cultural differences causes you to hesitate to speak to them, associate with them or tell them of Jesus Christ? Share an experience when have you been able to overlook these aspects of a person or when someone has overlooked your circumstances to share the gospel.

I grew up in a culture of prejudice towards others. By the grace of God, I realized that God is no respecter of persons and that includes me. We are all sinners and myself especially, how can I judge another person?

3. Read the following verses Jeremiah 2:13, Jeremiah 17:13, Gospel of John 7:37-39 and Revelation 7:17.

What did Jesus meant by the term “living water” in Chapter 4 verse 10 of the Gospel of John and “the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” in Chapter 4 verse 14 of the Gospel of John?

The Holy Spirit is the living water and the spring of water welling up to eternal life.

Questions and Answers

1. Why did Jesus ask the woman to call her husband and come back in verse 16 if he knew she had no husband as shown in verse 17 and 18?

She still was looking for her physical needs to be met. He wanted to demonstrate that he knew her physical state and circumstances but he wished to address her spiritual needs. He got her attention and she could remedy her situation best if she were with the man she was with at Jesus side. Her spiritual need was related to her continued sin of adultery.

2. The woman basically agreed Jesus was right about the man she was with was not her husband in her statement "Sir…I can see that you are a prophet.” What are the possible reasons for her turning the conversation to the difference of places of worship?

  • Possibility 1 – She wanted to test him, she thought she knew the answer
  • Possibility 2 – This question really bothered her, she did not know the answer
  • Possibility 3 – She tried to divert attention from herself and her spiritual needs

3. List 5 truths from Jesus’ statement to the woman in verses 21 through 24.

Here are 8 truths:

  1. Time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem.
  2. Samaritans worship what you do not know
  3. Jews worship what we do know
  4. Salvation is from the Jews
  5. Time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth
  6. The Father seeks true worshipers who will worship Him in spirit and truth
  7. God is spirit
  8. God’s worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth

Questions and Answers

1. Do you think the woman believed Jesus’ statement of these truths in verses 21-24? Why or why not?

No, she still does not believe because she states the “when the Messiah comes he will explain everything to us” in verse 25.

2. In Chapter 4 verse 29 the woman said to the townspeople "Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Christ?" What strikes you about how she explains her conversation with Jesus?

That she does not mention that he told her he was the Christ

3. List 3 things the woman actually knows about Jesus based on her encounter with him.

Here are 5 things

  1. That he was a Jew
  2. That he was thirsty
  3. That he had nothing to draw water with
  4. That he knew things about her that she did not reveal to him
  5. That he said he was the Christ

Questions and Answers

1. List 5 things Jesus tells his disciples in verses 35-38.

Here are 9 things

  1. Open your eyes
  2. The fields are ripe for harvest
  3. Even now the reaper draws his wages
  4. Even now the reaper harvests the crop for eternal life
  5. The result of the harvest is that the sower and the reaper may be glad together
  6. Therefore the saying one sows and another reaps is true
  7. I sent you to reap what you have not worked for
  8. Others have done the hard work
  9. You have reaped the benefits of their labor

2. Why did Jesus say what is related in verses 34-38 to his disciples and what lesson for daily living do we learn from this?

  • He wanted them to concentrate on the spiritual work that needed to be done in saving the Samaritan townspeople as opposed to addressing their physical hunger
  • We should focus on our spiritual food more than our physical food and we should seek to gain spiritual health more so than physical health

3. Contrast the focus and results of Jesus to the focus and results of his disciples.

Jesus focus was the spiritual needs of the Samaritan woman and the townspeople, the result was many became believers and he did the will of the Father

The disciples focus was their need for physical food – they got food.

Questions and Answers

1. Read Matt 13:53-58 and Mark 6:1-6. What are the three examples Jesus gives for the types of people who would not honor him?

  1. Those from his hometown
  2. From his relatives
  3. In his own house

2. Why is it hard for a prophet to be honored in his own country?

Because people know or think they know the prophet based on their human perception of what they have learned of him through their natural mind or 5 senses. It is easier to believe someone is holy if you know little about him. It seems that a holy person cannot be holy based on man’s standards of perception – only by God’s.

3. What actions indicated the faith of the royal official?

  • He traveled about 15 miles to Cana and begged Jesus to heal his son
  • He asked again after Jesus’ rebuke
  • He took Jesus at his word when he told him his son would live