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John 4J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)

Jesus meets a Samaritan woman

1-7 Now when the Lord found that the Pharisees had heard that “Jesus is making and baptising more disciples than John”—although, in fact, it was not Jesus who did the baptising but his disciples—he left Judea and went off again to Galilee, which meant passing through Samaria. There he came to a little town called Sychar, which is near the historic plot of land that Jacob gave to his son, Joseph, and “Jacob’s Spring” was there. Jesus, tired with his journey, sat down beside it, just as he was. The time was about midday. Presently, a Samaritan woman arrived to draw some water.

8-9 “Please give me a drink,” Jesus said to her, for his disciples had gone away to the town to buy food. The Samaritan woman said to him, “How can you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.)

10 “If you knew what God can give,” Jesus replied, “and if you knew who it is that said to you, ‘Give me a drink’, I think you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water!”

11-12 “Sir,” said the woman, “you have nothing to draw water with and this well is deep—where can you get your living water? Are you a greater man than our ancestor, Jacob, who gave us this well, and drank here himself with his family, and his cattle?”

13-14 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again. But whoever drinks the water I will give him will never be thirsty again. For my gift will become a spring in the man himself, welling up into eternal life.”

15 The woman said, “Sir, give me this water, so that I may stop being thirsty—and not have to come here to draw water any more!”

16 “Go and call your husband and then come back here,” said Jesus to her.

17-18 “I haven’t got a husband!” the woman answered. “You are quite right in saying, ‘I haven’t got a husband’,” replied Jesus, “for you have had five husbands and the man you have now is not your husband at all. Yes, you spoke the simple truth when you said that.”

19-20 “Sir,” said the woman again, “I can see that you are a prophet! Now our ancestors worshipped on this hill-side, but you Jews say that Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship—”

21-24 “Believe me,” returned Jesus, “the time is coming when worshipping the Father will not be a matter of ‘on this hill-side’ or ‘in Jerusalem’. Nowadays you are worshipping with your eyes shut. We Jews are worshipping with our eyes open, for the salvation of mankind is to come from our race. Yet the time is coming, yes, and has already come, when true worshippers will worship in spirit and in reality. Indeed, the Father looks for men who will worship him like that. God is spirit, and those who worship him can only worship in spirit and in reality.”

25 “Of course I know that Messiah is coming,” returned the woman, “you know, the one who is called Christ. When he comes he will make everything plain to us.”

26 “I am Christ speaking to you now,” said Jesus.

27-30 At this point his disciples arrived, and were surprised to find him talking to a woman, but none of them asked, “What do you want?” or “What are you talking to her about?” So the woman left her water-pot behind and went into the town and began to say to the people, “Come out and see the man who told me everything I’ve ever done! Can this be ‘Christ’?” So they left the town and started to come to Jesus.

31 Meanwhile the disciples were begging him, “Master, do eat something.”

32 To which Jesus replied, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.”

33 This, of course, made the disciples ask each other, “Do you think anyone has brought him any food?”

34-38 Jesus said to them, “My food is doing the will of him who sent me and finishing the work he has given me. Don’t you say, ‘Four months more and then comes the harvest’? But I tell you to open your eyes and look to the field—they are gleaming white, all ready for the harvest! The reaper is already being rewarded and getting in a harvest for eternal life, so that both sower and reaper may be glad together. For in this harvest the old saying comes true, ‘One man sows and another reaps.’ I have sent you to reap a harvest for which you never laboured; other men have worked hard and you have reaped the results of their labours.”

39-42 Many of the Samaritans who came out of that town believed in him through the woman’s testimony—“He told me everything I’ve ever done.” And when they arrived they begged him to stay with them. He did stay there two days and far more believed in him because of what he himself said. As they told the woman, “We don’t believe any longer now because of what you said. We have heard him with our own ears. We know now that this must be the man who will save the world!”

Jesus, in Cana again, heals in response to faith

43-47 After the two days were over, Jesus left and went away to Galilee. (For Jesus himself testified that a prophet enjoys no honour in his own country.) And on his arrival the people received him with open arms. For they had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem during the festival, since they had themselves been present. So Jesus came again to Cana in Galilee, the place where he had made the water into wine. At Capernaum there was an official whose son was very ill. When he heard that Jesus had left Judea and had arrived in Galilee, he went off to see him and begged him to come down and heal his son, who was by this time at the point of death.

48 Jesus said to him, “I suppose you will never believe unless you see signs and wonders!”

49 “Sir,” returned the official, “please come down before my boy dies!”

50 “You can go home,” returned Jesus, “your son is alive and well.” And the man believed what Jesus had said to him and went on his way.

51-54 On the journey back his servants met him with the report, “Your son is alive and well.” So he asked them at what time he had begun to recover, and they replied: “The fever left him yesterday at one o’clock in the afternoon”. Then the father knew that this must have happened at the very moment when Jesus had said to him, “Your son is alive and well.” And he and his whole household believed in Jesus. This, then, was the second sign that Jesus gave on his return from Judea to Galilee.

J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)

The New Testament in Modern English by J.B Phillips copyright © 1960, 1972 J. B. Phillips. Administered by The Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England. Used by Permission.


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