John 4:15
The woman said to him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come here to draw.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(15) Come hither.—The Sinaitic and Vatican and some other MSS. read, “come through hither,” or as Alford, who adopts the reading, renders it, “come all the way hither.” Godet also adopts the reading, but renders it, in the service of a forced explanation, “pass by here,” thinking that the woman was on her way home from work at meal-time, and that this accounts for her presence at the well at noon. He regards this as sans doute, but the reading itself is at least uncertain, and is probably to be explained by its first syllable being added from the last syllable of the previous word; and the translation is more than uncertain.

The woman understands the words in their physical sense. How many a toilsome hour, how many a weary journey would she be saved!

4:4-26 There was great hatred between the Samaritans and the Jews. Christ's road from Judea to Galilee lay through Samaria. We should not go into places of temptation but when we needs must; and then must not dwell in them, but hasten through them. We have here our Lord Jesus under the common fatigue of travellers. Thus we see that he was truly a man. Toil came in with sin; therefore Christ, having made himself a curse for us, submitted to it. Also, he was a poor man, and went all his journeys on foot. Being wearied, he sat thus on the well; he had no couch to rest upon. He sat thus, as people wearied with travelling sit. Surely, we ought readily to submit to be like the Son of God in such things as these. Christ asked a woman for water. She was surprised because he did not show the anger of his own nation against the Samaritans. Moderate men of all sides are men wondered at. Christ took the occasion to teach her Divine things: he converted this woman, by showing her ignorance and sinfulness, and her need of a Saviour. By this living water is meant the Spirit. Under this comparison the blessing of the Messiah had been promised in the Old Testament. The graces of the Spirit, and his comforts, satisfy the thirsting soul, that knows its own nature and necessity. What Jesus spake figuratively, she took literally. Christ shows that the water of Jacob's well yielded a very short satisfaction. Of whatever waters of comfort we drink, we shall thirst again. But whoever partakes of the Spirit of grace, and the comforts of the gospel, shall never want that which will abundantly satisfy his soul. Carnal hearts look no higher than carnal ends. Give it me, saith she, not that I may have everlasting life, which Christ proposed, but that I come not hither to draw. The carnal mind is very ingenious in shifting off convictions, and keeping them from fastening. But how closely our Lord Jesus brings home the conviction to her conscience! He severely reproved her present state of life. The woman acknowledged Christ to be a prophet. The power of his word in searching the heart, and convincing the conscience of secret things, is a proof of Divine authority. It should cool our contests, to think that the things we are striving about are passing away. The object of worship will continue still the same, God, as a Father; but an end shall be put to all differences about the place of worship. Reason teaches us to consult decency and convenience in the places of our worship; but religion gives no preference to one place above another, in respect of holiness and approval with God. The Jews were certainly in the right. Those who by the Scriptures have obtained some knowledge of God, know whom they worship. The word of salvation was of the Jews. It came to other nations through them. Christ justly preferred the Jewish worship before the Samaritan, yet here he speaks of the former as soon to be done away. God was about to be revealed as the Father of all believers in every nation. The spirit or the soul of man, as influenced by the Holy Spirit, must worship God, and have communion with him. Spiritual affections, as shown in fervent prayers, supplications, and thanksgivings, form the worship of an upright heart, in which God delights and is glorified. The woman was disposed to leave the matter undecided, till the coming of the Messiah. But Christ told her, I that speak to thee, am He. She was an alien and a hostile Samaritan, merely speaking to her was thought to disgrace our Lord Jesus. Yet to this woman did our Lord reveal himself more fully than as yet he had done to any of his disciples. No past sins can bar our acceptance with him, if we humble ourselves before him, believing in him as the Christ, the Saviour of the world.The woman said ... - It may seem strange that the woman did not yet understand him, but it shows how slow sinners are to understand the doctrines of religion. 15-18. give me this water, &c.—This is not obtuseness—that is giving way—it expresses a wondering desire after she scarce knew what from this mysterious Stranger. I am not of their mind, who think that this woman understood our Saviour speaking about spiritual water, only she had a mind to talk; and indeed it is hard to conceive how a woman of her education, and way of life, should understand any such thing; but it is plain that she did not understand him in what he was discoursing about, but doth, as it were, deride him, believing that he had no such thing to bestow. She taketh no notice of the water which our Saviour had spoken of, springing up to eternal life; but regarding only the present life, and her ease in that, desires favour of Christ only to supply her wants in this life, and that she might live more at ease: so true is that of the apostle, Romans 8:5, They that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh. The woman saith unto him, Sir,.... See Gill on John 4:11;

give me this water, that I thirst not. The Syriac and Persic versions add, "again":

neither come hither; the Ethiopic version adds here, "again";

to draw. This she said also, in the same sneering and scoffing way, as her talking of not thirsting and coming thither to draw water, shows; and it is as if she had said, pray give me some of this fine water you talk of, that I may never thirst again; and so have no occasion to be at all this fatigue and trouble, to come daily to this well for water: though some think, that she now spoke seriously, having some little knowledge of what our Lord meant by living water, but with a mixture of much ignorance, and that she heartily desired it; but the reason she gives, shows the contrary.

The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
John 4:15-16. The woman as yet having no apprehension of the higher meaning of the water spoken of (against B. Crusius, Lange), yet being in some degree perplexed, asks, not in irony, as Lightfoot and Tholuck think, but sincerely, for this wonderful water, which at any rate must be of great use to her.

Jesus breaks off suddenly, and commences, by a seemingly unimportant request, “Call thy husband,” to lay hold of the woman in her inner life, so that the beginnings of faith in Him might be connected with His supernatural knowledge of her peculiar moral relations. This process must be accompanied with the awakening in her of a sense of guilt (see John 4:29), and thus pave the way for μετάνοια; and who dare deny that, besides the immediate object, this may have been included in the purposes of Jesus? though He does not directly rebuke, but leaves the feeling to operate of itself (against Strauss and most others).

φώνησ. τ. ἄνδρα σου] We are not to ask here what the husband was to do (Chrysostom, Euthymius Zigabenus: “that he might partake with her of the gift of salvation that was before her;” so also Lücke); because the command was only an apparent one, not seriously intended, for Jesus knew the relations of the woman, and did not merely discover His prophetic gift by the answer she gave, as Lücke and Godet quite gratuitously assume. The τ. ἄνδρα σου was the sore spot where the healing was to begin. According to Lange, L. J. II. p. 530 f., it would have been unseemly if Jesus, now that the woman showed a willingness to become His disciple (?), had continued to converse longer with her in her husband’s absence; His desire, therefore, was in keeping “with the highest and finest sense of social propriety.” But the husband was nothing more than a paramour!

ἐλθέ] in the sense of come back, as the context shows. See Hom. Od. a. 408, β. 30; Xen. Anab. ii. 1. 1, v. 1. 4; Bar 4:37; Tob 1:18; Heind. ad Plat. Prot. p. 310 C. Comp. John 14:18; Luke 19:13.John 4:15. The woman, with her mind still running on actual water, says Κύριεἀντλεῖν. She is attracted by the two qualities of the water, and asks it (1) ἵνα μὴ διψῶ, (2) μηδὲ ἔρχωμαι ἐνθάδε ἀντλεῖν.15. She still does not understand, but does not wilfully misunderstand. This wonderful water will at any rate be worth having, and she asks quite sincerely (not ironically) for it. Had she been a Jew, she could scarcely have thus misunderstood, this metaphor of ‘water’ and ‘living water’ is so frequent in the Prophets. Comp. Isaiah 12:3; Isaiah 44:3; Jeremiah 2:13; Zechariah 13:1; Zechariah 14:8. But the Samaritans rejected all but the Pentateuch.

to draw] Same word as in John 2:8-9; peculiar to this Gospel.John 4:15. Δός μοι, give me) The woman asks for the water, as the Jews asked bread, ch. John 6:34, “Lord evermore give us this bread,” for the support of the body. By this time the matter is come to that point, that the woman says, give; to whom before the same word had been addressed [by Jesus] “Give Me to drink,” John 4:7.—ἔνθαδε, hither) with toil. She wishes to have at home that fountain.Verse 15. - The woman has not yet emerged out of the region of her physical desires and her daily requirements, and needs a deeper apprehension of her real necessities. By reason of the subsequent narrative she ought not to be credited now with impertinence or irony (Lightfoot, Tholuck). She could not understand the miraculous water of which the Stranger spake, but had some dim notion that he might be able to deliver her from her toilsome and exhausting life. She replies to him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come all the way hither to draw. The Lord had spoken of eternal life, and she is content to have temporal satisfaction to the extent of thirsting no more. Some commentators, with Lange and Hengstenberg, suppose that the journey to Jacob's well was in her mind a quasi-religious act, the insufficiency of which to meet her case is at length becoming apparent. This view seems to us inconsistent with the sudden change of metaphor and alteration of his method of approach to this woman's consciousness and need. He resolved rather to search her heart and reveal her to herself - to bring forth from its hiding place the torpid conscience, and reveal to her the grievous need in which she stood of that Divine cleansing, healing, nutrition, refreshment, which he had been sent into the world to supply. This reflection renders the reply of Jesus less obscure than its abrupt transition seems to imply.
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