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Samaritan woman at the well 5 husbands

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Watercolour and ink portrait of Photini by Sarah Beth Baca. Used with permission of the artist. All rights reserved. Prints of this portrait and of other Bible women can be purchased here. It seems to me that people have been too quick to cast aspersions on some women of the Bible. Mary Magdalene has been wrongly labelled as a prostitute, and the Samaritan woman has been regarded as a loose woman.

SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Jesus and Samaritan woman at the well

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SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: John 4: Five Husbands of the Samaritan Woman at well, abpentucole.coma are explained.

The Samaritan Woman Story: An Alternative View (dr. Eli Lizorkin-eyzenberg And Lisa Loden)

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Jump to navigation. We used the reading from Year A since we have six people entering the church. Other parishes may have used the Year C Gospel, Luke This reading overflows with good news that "true worship" is not found in any building or cult but in the hearts of believers who worship God "in Spirit and in Truth.

Rather than highlight the Samaritan woman's inspired missionary leadership, preachers too often rant that she was a five-time divorcee before Jesus saved her from a dissolute life of sin.

I'm grateful that the deacon preaching at our parish Mass focused on an interpretation favored by New Testament scholar and Immaculate Heart of Mary Sr. Sandra Schneiders.

She points to Israel's use of spousal metaphors to describe God's passionate, covenant love for the chosen people. Samaritans had strayed from monotheism and episodically worshipped other gods. Schneiders suggests that Jesus was speaking metaphorically about Samaria's infidelity -- pointing out that Samaria's current "husband" was not a source of living water for the people. While different scholars have offered numerous interpretations of this puzzling text, there is no real consensus.

There are historical contradictions, however, that make taking it at face value a dubious enterprise at best. This is because in first century Palestine, a woman could not initiate divorce except in extremely rare circumstances.

Therefore the Samaritan woman's five former husbands must have either divorced her or died. This would have spelled disaster for her since women relied on the patriarchal household to survive.

While Jesus at first affirms the woman's reply that she has no husband, he then enigmatically implies that she does have one. But before branding her as a harlot or adulteress, we would be wise to remember that Roman marriage laws stipulated only the freeborn could marry, and then only to another freeborn person. This excluded from legal marriage the millions of freed persons former slaves who populated the empire. Living as a concubine could have been the Samaritan woman's only option if she and her "husband" were both freed persons, or if one was freeborn and the other freed.

While we will probably never know the exact historical circumstances underpinning the Samaritan woman's domestic situation, it is clear that Jesus paid no attention whatsoever to social mores that diminished women. Biblical scholar Jerome H. Neyrey spells out in detail just how unconcerned John's Gospel is about female propriety: "In John 4, all social taboos customarily separating males and females into separate worlds are systematically recognized, but broken and transformed.

This upsetting of cultural taboos, moreover, is conscious and intentional; it constitutes an essential part of the author's communication. First, a solitary Samaritan woman approaches Jesus at a public well at the wrong time of day. Since village women normally drew water only at dawn and dusk, a woman appearing alone at noon would have been considered improper.

Jesus speaks to her and a lengthy conversation ensues. The woman herself remarks on Jesus' impropriety.

Jews disliked and shunned Samaritans and it was considered inappropriate for men to speak to women outside their kinship circles in public. Second, when Jesus asks the woman to call her husband, Neyrey notes, "[She] went into the village marketplace where all the men are gathered.

The narrative does not say 'marketplace,' but from our knowledge of that culture, we would be culturally accurate in imagining males gathered together in an open-air space, such as a marketplace.

The message is clear. The Samaritan woman is as far removed from the proper matrona ideal of Greco-Roman culture as anyone could imagine. And yet she exhibits remarkable theological acumen sparring with Jesus over where true worship is found. Unlike the respected rabbi, Nicodemus John 3 , who meets secretly with Jesus at night and departs still doubting, the Samaritan woman meets him in broad daylight and departs a true believer. John's Gospel portrays her as the privileged recipient of Jesus' self-revelation as "Messiah" and the great "I Am" hearkening back to Moses pointing to Jesus' oneness with the divine.

On her word, "Many of the Samaritans of that town began to believe in him This text is the longest conversation Jesus has with any woman in all four Gospels.

Many scholars believe a female missionary probably evangelized Samaria and there were many Samaritan members in the diverse community for whom John's Gospel was written.

For John, the Samaritan woman represents the consummate "outsider" who, after her transformative encounter with Jesus, becomes not only an "insider" but also a leader, publicly proclaiming Jesus the Messiah to both men and women via village communication channels.

Along the way the narrative deliberately highlights and then discounts stereotypical female behaviors to which she does not conform. Yet her non-conformity presents no obstacle to her acceptance and subsequent leadership in Jesus' kinship network. For me, the most compelling piece of "good news" in this passage is that the Samaritan woman's search for true worship comes to fruition in her lengthy dialogue with Jesus. Her joyful embrace of Jesus' teaching slakes his hunger to fulfill God's will "on earth as in heaven.

The woman's search for true worship "in Spirit and in Truth" is at last fulfilled. Jesus recognizes that he did not sow the hunger for God that already existed within her. But he did reap what another had sown. As for the Samaritan woman, she now joins a group of sowers and reapers "gathering crops for eternal life" John Joseph, Sr.

Christine Schenk served urban families for 18 years as a nurse midwife before co-founding FutureChurch, where she served for 23 years.

She holds master's degrees in nursing and theology. Editor's note: We can send you an email alert every time Christine Schenk's column, Simply Spirit, is posted. Go to this page and follow directions: Email alert sign-up. Send your thoughts and reactions to Letters to the Editor. Learn more here. Join now. Blog Simply Spirit. Clueless preaching about the Samaritan woman misses the point Mar 3, Join the Conversation Send your thoughts and reactions to Letters to the Editor.

Enter your email address to receive free newsletters from NCR. Email address. Spirituality Clueless preaching about the Samaritan woman misses the point. Most Recent Vine and branches May 12, Britain says churches can't open until July; bishops not happy May 12, In southern Nigeria, nuns put TB, leprosy patients on road to recovery May 12, Safety a priority as Vatican Museums eyes reopening, official says May 12, Francis calls for investment in healthcare, 'the primary common good' May 12, Copy Desk Daily, May 12, May 12, Francis, the comic strip May 12, Quick Reads Britain says churches can't open until July; bishops not happy May 12, At morning Mass, Pope offers prayers for unemployed May 11, Pope accepts resignation of Cincinnati auxiliary bishop accused of negligence in priest's case May 7, Bishops criticize actions of their predecessors in Nazi Germany May 7, Beatifications for May, June postponed due to pandemic May 6, Buffalo diocese seeks halt to outstanding sex abuse lawsuits May 5, Taking a new approach to the Bible this Lent Mar 27, God is in our midst and is working through us Mar 23, A Samaritan apostle Mar 18,

A better picture for the Samaritan woman at the well with five previous husbands

There are positive and negative aspects to visualizing the stories of the Bible as you read. Often, I will have a running movie in my head as I read, and it makes for an immersive encounter with the text. On the flip side, sometimes my assumptions about the characters are way off and reveal an unhealthy bias. Such may be the case with the story of Jesus and the woman at the well in Samaria, in John 4.

When Jesus was traveling from Judea to Galilee, he took an unusual route. He went through Samaria.

When Jesus speaks with the Samaritan woman in John , is the passage about her husbands literal, or symbolic of the five different tribes that were settled in her town? The Samaritan woman, unlike other individuals who speak with Jesus in the Gospel of John, is never named. Some interpreters have taken this anonymity as an invitation to view her as an abstraction, a symbol of Samaria itself. If she is a symbol, the thinking goes, then surely her five husbands could represent the five locations in Samaria that settlers are supposed to have been brought according to 2Kings

Spiritual Rebirth: The Samaritan Woman at the Well

Start free trial. It was about noon. How can you ask me for a drink? Where can you get this living water? Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life. What you have just said is quite true. When he comes, he will explain everything to us. Could this be the Messiah? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.

Samaritan woman at the well

Jump to navigation. We used the reading from Year A since we have six people entering the church. Other parishes may have used the Year C Gospel, Luke This reading overflows with good news that "true worship" is not found in any building or cult but in the hearts of believers who worship God "in Spirit and in Truth. Rather than highlight the Samaritan woman's inspired missionary leadership, preachers too often rant that she was a five-time divorcee before Jesus saved her from a dissolute life of sin.

In the gospel of John, Jesus a Galilean engages in a most unusual conversation with a Samaritan woman at a well.

Search This Site. This is also the longest private conservation Jesus had with anyone in the New Testament John It was about noon. It was not geographically necessary for Jesus to go through Samaria, and Jewish travelers normally traveled around Samaria.

Who were the Samaritan woman’s five husbands?

Through the conversation with the Samaritan woman, we see that Jesus is the fulfilment of the Law; the Torah, the first five Books of the Bible, represented by the five Husbands in her past life and he in fact is the fleshed Word of God offering new life, and salvation for all. For you have had five husbands; and he whom you now have is not your husband: in that said you truly. The Samaritan woman, unlike other individuals who speak with Jesus in the Gospel of John, is never named. She was an alien and a hostile Samaritan, merely speaking to her was thought to disgrace our Lord Jesus.

The Samaritan woman at the well is a figure from the Gospel of John , in John — The woman appears in John 4 :4—42, However below is John — But he had to go through Samaria. So he came to a Samaritan city called Sychar , near the plot of ground that Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired out by his journey, was sitting by the well.

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By Rev. John Trigilio, Jr. Kenneth Brighenti. The Samaritan woman at the well is no angel. Mixed up with a wrong crowd, this poor woman from Samaria has quite a reputation. The story also shows that a well of grace is ready to refresh the soul parched by sin and suffering and that Jesus comes to save the sick and to serve those who still need both physical and spiritual healing — not only the converted. In some Christian religions, including Catholicism and Orthodox, seeking forgiveness is the basis for the sacrament of Reconciliation confession.

Feb 21, - The woman at the well is an example of Christian witness and her to call her husband, and he asserts that she has had five husbands.

F lorence came to my house twice a week, selling vegetables. She carried on her back a bag weighing nearly 40 pounds. With its strap across her forehead and the load on her back, she hunched along dirt roads about two hours each way to the cluster of houses where my husband and I lived in Kijabe, Kenya.

The Samaritan Woman of Sychar (John 4)

Whosoever drinketh of this water, shall thirst again; but he that shall drink of the water that I will give him, shall not thirst for ever: But the water that I will give him, shall become in him a fountain of water, springing up into life everlasting. The woman saith to him: Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come hither to draw. He is not speaking about H2O.

Why Did The Samaritan Woman At The Well Have So Many Marriages?

His disciples performed an ancient Jewish ritual of ceremonial washing with water, just as did John the Baptist and his disciples. When it became clear to Jesus that the crowds were growing large, but especially when he heard that this alarmed Pharisees very much, he decided it was time to go to Galilee to continue his ministry vs. The pictures come here. Perhaps, at this point a short geography lesson would be helpful.

There is a shorter Lectionary option, but reading the full narrative of the woman at the well is crucial to understanding her significance. She is an open, engaged recruiter of disciples in Christ, and she is a model for women preachers.

By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy , Privacy Policy , and our Terms of Service. Biblical Hermeneutics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professors, theologians, and those interested in exegetical analysis of biblical texts. It only takes a minute to sign up. When the Samaritan woman finally accepts Jesus' offer of living water, he says to her: "Go, call your husband and come here.

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The Samaritan Woman and the Power of Women Preachers

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