The woman at the well desiring god
She is not a prostitute. She doesn't have a shady past. Yet when millions of Christians listen to her story this coming Sunday in church, they are likely to hear their preachers describe her in just those terms. Her story is told in the fourth chapter of the Gospel According to John. She is a Samaritan woman who Jesus encounters by a well.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: H. B. Charles - The Woman at the Well
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She is not a prostitute. She doesn't have a shady past. Yet when millions of Christians listen to her story this coming Sunday in church, they are likely to hear their preachers describe her in just those terms. Her story is told in the fourth chapter of the Gospel According to John.
She is a Samaritan woman who Jesus encounters by a well. Jews and Samaritans don't get along, and women and men in this culture generally keep a safe social distance from each other.
So she is doubly surprised when Jesus asks her for a drink. When she makes a remark to that effect, he offers her living water.
Confused, but intrigued, she asks about this miraculous water. He eventually invites her to call her husband, and when she replies that she has no husband, he agrees: "You have had five husbands, and the one you have now is not your husband" And that's it.
That's the sentence that has branded her a prostitute. Conservative preacher John Piper's treatment is characteristic. In a sermon on this passage, he describes her as "a worldly, sensually-minded, unspiritual harlot from Samaria, " and at another point in the sermon calls her a "whore. Yet there is nothing in the passage that makes this an obvious interpretation. Neither John as narrator nor Jesus as the central character supply that information. Jesus at no point invites repentance or, for that matter, speaks of sin at all.
She very easily could have been widowed or have been abandoned or divorced which in the ancient world was pretty much the same thing for a woman. Five times would be heartbreaking, but not impossible. Further, she could now be living with someone that she was dependent on, or be in what's called a Levirate marriage where a childless woman is married to her deceased husband's brother in order to produce an heir yet is not always technically considered the brother's wife.
There are any number of ways, in fact, that one might imagine this woman's story as tragic rather than scandalous, yet most preacher's assume the latter. The difficulty with that interpretation is that it trips up the rest of the story.
Immediately after Jesus describes her past, she says, "I see that you are a prophet" and asks him where one should worship. If you believe the worst of her, this is nothing more than a clumsy attempt to change the topic.
But if you can imagine another scenario, things look different. When the woman says, "I see you are a prophet," she is making a confession of faith. Because Jesus has "seen" her. He has seen her plight -- of dependence, not immorality. He has recognized her, spoken with her, offered her something of incomparable worth. He has seen her -- she exists for him, has worth, value, significance and all of this is treatment to which she is unaccustomed.
And so when he speaks of her past both knowingly and compassionately, she realizes she is in the presence of a prophet. For this reason only does she risk the central question that has divided Samaritans and Jews for centuries. This is no awkward dodge or academic diversion; this is a heartfelt question that gets to the core of what separates her from Jesus. And when Jesus surprises her with an answer that is simultaneously more hopeful and penetrating than she'd expected, she leaves her water jar behind to tell her neighbors about this man.
So if this seems at least as probable an interpretation as the more routine one, why do so many preachers assume the worst of her? I would suggest two reasons. First, there is a long history of misogyny in Christian theology that stands in sharp contrast to the important role women play in the gospels themselves. Women, the four evangelists testify, supported Jesus' ministry. They were present at the tomb when their male companions fled. And they were the first witnesses to the resurrection.
Yet from asserting that Eve was the one who succumbed to temptation conveniently ignoring that the author of Genesis says Adam was right there with her -- Gen.
I recognize this penchant is not unique to Christians. Given all his celebration of the "Feminine Divine," it's striking to note that he had only two female characters in his lengthy novel -- the love interest of his alter ego symbologist and an elderly nun who survives for all of two pages.
So apparently secular humanists can be chauvinists too! A second reason preachers cast this woman in the role of prostitute is that it plays into the belief that Christianity, and religion generally, is chiefly about morality. But this story is not about immorality; it's about identity. In the previous scene, Jesus was encountered by a male Jewish religious authority who could not comprehend who or what Jesus was.
In this scene, he encounters the polar opposite, and perhaps precisely because she is at the other end of the power spectrum, she recognizes not just who Jesus is but what he offers -- dignity. Jesus invites her to not be defined by her circumstances and offers her an identity that lifts her above her tragedy. And she accepts, playing a unique role in Jesus' ministry as she is the first character in John's gospel to seek out others to tell them about Jesus.
If preachers can rise above the misogyny and moralism that characterizes too much Christian theology, they have the opportunity to tell this woman's story for what it is: a story of the transforming power of love and the capacity to receive and live into a new identity. By doing so, preachers won't just be talking about this woman any more, they'll also be talking to and about us. And that's a sermon I, for one, would like to hear. Note: My thanks to Karoline Lewis for a very helpful conversation on this passage that prompted this reflection.
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Morse writes:. The alternative universe where an accident infuses the heroine with superhuman powers, however, seems to stand as a reasonable apologetic for the feminist agenda. This is a classic strawman argument: studies say that men and women are not exactly the same. Therefore, the feminist agenda is mythology only suitable for a fictional alternate universe. But the Bible itself contradicts that in the book of Judges.
After seeing the argument, I put out a call on Twitter to the men of the Christian faith to name the women who have led and theologically shaped them throughout their lives. I expected a handful of men to respond, but the outpouring of examples of godly women was overwhelming. At every single crossroad of my life, I've had a woman there walking me through it. Every single time I've hit the depths I've had gracious leaders helping me find clarity. Every time my faith has overwhelmed me a woman has been there to help ease the burden.
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This is the third book in a series of 3. What the author explains really well in this book is that our efforts, or our will driven actions are not the means by which we become more like Jesus. It is This book is a must for everyone! It is such a great resouce and inspiration. I highly recommend it for everyone you know!! David G. Benner PhD, York University is an internationally known depth psychologist, transformational coach and author whose life passion has been helping people walk the human path in a deeply spiritual way and the spiritual path in a deeply human way. Most people think of God's will as something to be found or as the receiving of guidance from God when making decisions. Too often, however, the problem is not that we don't know what God desires for our lives, but rather that we just don't want to do what we already know he wants.
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Today we will inaugurate a man to the presidency of the United States who is morally unqualified to be there. This is important to say just now because not to see it and feel it will add to the collapsing vision of leadership that enabled him to be nominated and elected. Not only that, but if we do not see and feel the nature and weight of this sorrow, we will not know how to pray for his presidency or speak as sojourners and exiles whose pattern of life is defined in heaven, not by the mood of the culture. So was Hillary Clinton because she approves of killing unborn children.
We want to provide valuable resources for you to grow deeper in your walk with the Lord. We pray that these books, blogs, podcasts, lock screens and other resources are a blessing to you in your relationship with the Lord. We were created to be well-watered women who live the abundant life Christ came to give us Isaiah , John
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Women preachers and apostles have been the popular topic of Christian debate for centuries. On the other hand, we have passages like Acts and Romans 16 showing us that Apostle Paul approves of women holding church leadership positions and teaching men. I know that Desiring God and its founder, John Piper, has earned an incredible amount of respect and influence over both new and seasoned Christians alike. There are incredible female pastors, church planters, deacons, and apostles who have lived out their vocational callings by the anointing and favor of God—with or without the approval of men.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: John Piper - Jesus respected women
Leer comentario completo. John and his wife, Noel, have five children and an increasing number of grandchildren. Learn more about his ministry at DesiringGod. Account Options Sign in. John Piper.