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The Conversion of the Woman of Samaria.

The Conversion of the Woman of Samaria.

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Published by glennpease
BY REV. WILLIAM CHARLES ROBERTS, D.D.. LL.D.



John iv. 13-15: "Whosoever drinketh of this water shall
thirst again : but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall
give liim shall never thirst ; but the M'ater that I shall ^ive
him shall be iu him a well of water springing up into everlast-
ing life."
BY REV. WILLIAM CHARLES ROBERTS, D.D.. LL.D.



John iv. 13-15: "Whosoever drinketh of this water shall
thirst again : but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall
give liim shall never thirst ; but the M'ater that I shall ^ive
him shall be iu him a well of water springing up into everlast-
ing life."

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Published by: glennpease on Mar 07, 2013
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THE CONVERSION OF THE WOMAN OF SAMARIA.
BY REV. WILLIAM CHARLES ROBERTS, D.D.. LL.D.
John iv. 13-15: "Whosoever drinketh of this water shallthirst again : but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shallgive liim shall never thirst ; but the M'ater that I shall ^ivehim shall be iu him a well of water springing up into everlast-ing life."IN this chapter is found a fine photograph set-ting forth with astonishing accuracy everyparticular of the scene at Sychar. Instyle and finish, if not in minuteness of de-tail, it stands almost alone. " It is not," saysone commentator, " a monument composed of an aggregate of stones, but, like the patriarch'spillar at Bethel, a glorious monolith ù its hiero-glyphics the riches of redeeming love andmercy." It is a master exhibition of Christ'scondescension and readiness to forgive.The subject suggested by it is the Conversionof a Disreputable Villager ù the Woman of Samaria.73NEW TESTAMENT CONVERSIONS. 73Notice, first, the place of her abode. Thisis called Shechern, Sychar, or in modern times,Nablous. It was not an inviting place. Thoughassociated in early times with the pitching of Abraham's tent; with the purchase of a buryingplace by Jacob; with the reading of the cursesand the blessings by the Levites, and with theresting place of Joseph's bones, yet it had bythis time acquired an unenviable reputation. Itwas one of the cities which belonged to Jero-boam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin.Its name had been changed to Sychar, meaningdrunken or foolish, on account of the wicked-ness of its citizens. Jesus afterwards forbadehis disciples to go to any of the cities of theSamaritans. Nevertheless, he went there nowhimself; thus rising above dispensational bar-riers and overstepping the limitations of hismission, in order to take pity on one of thatlost race.From among the vicious of this place theSaviour had resolved to gather some trophiesof redeeming grace. He concluded that he mustshow even there the omnipotence of that love
 
which was to change the lion into a lamb, theoutcast into a child, and the alien into an heir.He must i)lant some trees of righteousness atthe foot of the Mount of Curses, and preservea remnant of the God-forsaken Samaritans. Ja-cob's well must send forth richer blessings thanthe water it furnished the Shechemites.74 NEW TESTAMENT CONVERSIONS.Notice, secondly, Christ's meeting a disrepu-table woman of the place. These two personsform almost the sole actors in this memorablescene. They were as different from each otheras light and darkness, and 3'^et fellowshipsprang up between them. They were as far fromeach other morally and spiritually as the poles of the earth, and yet they were brought together bya mysterious spiritual power. They were mem-bers of two antagonistic nations, and yet theirnational prejudices now melted like snowflakesin the midday sun. They were devotees of rival religions, and 3^et the worst rivalry yieldedat this time to peace and concord.The more conspicuous of the two of course isthe weary stranger, who sat on Jacob's well.Here you catch a full view of the Saviour'shumanitj'. You can see the dust of the road,clinging to his sandals, and the large beads of sweat standing on his brow. You can readweariness in his limbs and heaviness in his eyes.You can feel that that hungry and thirsty one,who flings himself on the grass or sits on themasonry beside the well, is bone of your boneand flesh of your flesh.There is a world of comfort in all this.Christ could have called the ravens to bringhim food, and the clouds to distil of their con-tents to quench his thirst. lie might haveturned the stones of the valley into bread, andopened fountains of water on the rocky sidesNEW TESTAMENT CONVERSION'S. 75of Ebal and Gerizim ; he might have summonedangels to minister to his wants, but he preferredasking a poor woman of S3'char to do it. Hewas willing to put himself under obligation toone who was despised by his people on accountof her birth, life and religion. Here is truehumanity. Kindness and heartfelt sympathylay beneath that heaving heart ; tenderness and
 
love were shrouded in the soul of that wearyman ; grace and mercy were blended most beau-tifully in that face wrinkled with care.Our Saviour to-day wears in glory the samehuman form. He is changed as to his out-ward appearance, but not as to his heart's innerworkings. The weary pilgrim who cast him-self on the well at Sychar is enthroned amidhis redeemed ones in heaven. The divine Shep-herd who is to-da}' leading his flocks to livingfountains is, in the sympathies of his glorifiedmanhood, the same Saviour who sat on Jacob'swell. When the cries of the tried and temptedof earth reach his ears, they receive the lovingresponse of a human heart.There is not only humanity, but humilitydisplayed in this incident. Though a man, wear^^with travel, 3'et he might have shared the feel-ing of his race in despising a Samaritan. Hemight have given her a shekel of silver for thecuj) of water, and thereby put her under obliga-tion to him, but instead of that, he asked of hera favor, showing thereby that he did not despise76 NEW TESTAMENT CONVERSIONS.her on account of her poverty, religions con-nections, or manner of life. Tiiere is no surerªway of putting ourselves on equality with ourfellow-men than by asking of them a favor. If we would touch the heart of the humble andcast down, if we would win the confidence andsympathies of the lowly, we must condescendto ask of them a service. Our gifts to themlead them to feel the distance existing betweenus, but their gifts to us cause them to feel thatthey stand on the common level of humanitywith us.There is not only humanit}^ and humility butcharity here displayed. It astonished the dis-sipated Samaritan. " How is it that thou, be-ing a Jew " (his dress, tongue and appearancebetraying him); " askest drink of me, whicham a woman of Samaria ? " Tlie Jews and theSamaritans had been for ages bitter enemies.It, therefore, surprised this woman to find aJew able to rise above the prejudices of his race.It touched her heart, and gave her a better viewof life. It disposed her to hearken favorablyto what the stranger had to say.During this interview, Christ rose from beinga son of Abraham to being the Son of the

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