December 17 I Saturday
“The [Samaritan] woman said, ‘I know that Messiah’ (called Christ) ‘is coming. When He comes, He will explain everything to us.’ Then Jesus declared, ‘I, the One speaking to you–I am He.’” —John 4:25-26
The first evangelist that Jesus called in the Gospels is the Samaritan woman. We find this story, about six months into the ministry of Jesus, recorded in John 4. This was after the Passover in which Jesus and His disciples were in Jerusalem. It is interesting in Jesus’s return back to Galilee that He chose to go through Samaria, when many Jewish people would avoid Samaria altogether. Yet, Jesus did not do anything without a purpose.
When Jesus was in Samaria, He did not meet just any Samaritan woman; He met a woman who had been outcast by her society. Although it was not culturally appropriate at that time for Jewish men to talk to women publicly, Jesus not only spoke to the Samaritan woman, but He also showed her honour, value, worth and dignity. Then, He plainly revealed—for the first time—that He was the long-awaited Messiah.
After the Samaritan woman’s encounter with Jesus, John tells us, “Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, ‘Come, see a Man who told me everything I’ve ever done. Could this be the Messiah?’ They came out of the town and made their way towards Him….Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in Him because of the woman’s testimony, ‘He told me everything I’ve ever done.’ So when the Samaritans came to Him, they urged Him to stay with them, and He stayed two days. And because of His words many more became believers. They said to the woman, ‘We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this Man really is the Saviour of the world’” (John 4:28-30, 39-42).
The Samaritan woman believed in Jesus and went and told her community about Him. In doing so, she became the very first evangelist in the Gospels. It is interesting that up until this point, every time Jesus healed someone, He would instruct them not to tell anyone. But to this Samaritan woman, He revealed His Messiahship, knowing she would go and tell people about Him.
Jesus had an outcast Samaritan woman become the first evangelist He sent in the Gospels. This was not by mistake; Jesus went to Samaria, intentionally bringing His disciples to this place to call this woman. Our encounter with Jesus is not a mistake. No matter what our past may be, Jesus could use us to bring His good news to all the world. Like the Samaritan woman, may we have the same eagerness and zeal to tell others about Jesus Christ, who is the Saviour of the world.
Prayer: Lord God, it is not a mistake why You are in my life. You have saved me for Your kingdom purpose. I pray for those whom I tell about You that they, too, will believe in You. Thank You, Lord.