John 4:37-42
John 4:37 (KJB)
And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth.
This statement is very true in Christianity. When we send Bibles or Christian material to other people, maybe in other countries, we are planting the seed by sending the material and when the materials arrive, they will be placed in the hands of those who do evangelism. We will sow the seed but another will reap and that is how it has been and will be till the end. (1 Cor 3:6 KJV) I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 1 Cor. 3:6 adds another dimension to the fact that one sows and another reaps. It is that God gives the increase. Just as God grows the physical crops we see on farms, He also gives the increase in spiritual things. We may sow 1000 Bible tracts but maybe only 50 will become saved. Salvation is in the hands of the Lord and our responsibility is to be faithful in getting the Word out.
John 4:38 (KJB)
I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.
Here Jesus speaks to His disciples that they will reap where they bestowed no labor. They have entered into the labors of those who came before them. Jesus was speaking of men like Moses and the other prophets who came before them. We can also include men like King David and King Solomon. The spiritual road had been paved in Israel for about 1500 years and even going back further to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. So the disciples will be bringing the Gospel to the people and because of their past, the road has already been paved. It was not like they were walking into a completely pagan town or country. God had been dealing with Israel for 1500 years since Moses and about 500 years before Moses, so there was at least 2,000 years of prior spiritual activity. As Jesus teaches them about evangelism, when He goes back to Heaven and sends the promise of the Holy Spirit, they will be ready to evangelize in places where there was no Gospel preached.
John 4:39 (KJB)
And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.
I am sure that if this woman was married five times and the man she was now living with was not her husband, she would definitely have been a subject of discussion around town every now and then. People who knew her would definitely know her past. Here she comes into town and tells the people that she met a stranger who knew everything about her and her past. This testimony of the omniscience of Jesus had caused many of the Samaritans to believe. This definitely had to be of divine origin because with a person that has a past like this, it would be hard to take their words for truth. This is a perfect example of the message being the important thing and not the messenger. God uses the most unlikely people to bring the message of the Gospel to others. Then if people believe, you know that it is the message which brings change and not the messenger.
John 4:40 (KJB)
So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days.
Normally the Samaritans would have nothing to do with the Jews because of the way the Jews thought of them but here the lines of prejudice have been eliminated as the Samaritans had asked Jesus to remain with them. The woman had prepared the way for Jesus by her testimony. Jesus was not only a Jew but He was the long awaited Messiah. True Christianity breaks down all racial and prejudicial barriers. (1 John 4:18 KJV) There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. I am sure as John penned 1 John 4:18, that he probably had this scene in mind when he saw the prejudicial barriers between the Jews and Samaritans crumble in an instant because of Jesus. Different races of people are a tremendous creation of God. I remember some years ago at a church function an elderly Asian Indian woman had prepared a dish called Curry Goat. I gave it a try and it was absolutely delicious. Here was a good example of a real ethnic Indian dish. One more, I went to a party in Highland Park, NJ many years ago and my friend and I were the only non-Jews there and it was the first time I ever had falafel. I loved it! I think I ate most of the bowl.
John 4:41 (KJB)
And many more believed because of his own word;
Then while Jesus was there for the two days, He must have spoken much and because of this many more believed in Him. Now it had gone beyond the testimony of the woman and now the people had come to hear Jesus speak directly to them and many became saved because they believed. It is like someone handing out tracts and giving the people a small amount of Scripture verses and commentary and they go buy a Bible and then get the whole story, from start to finish. The Samaritans heard the living Word of God and today we read the living Word of God in the King James Bible.
John 4:42 (KJB)
And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.
They initially believed her testimony about Jesus but now since He came into their town to speak to them, they were given much more beyond the testimony of one person. She told them about Jesus and they came to Him and asked Him to stay. The result was that many of them had become saved. They recognized Him as the Christ or the Messiah. He must have preached some tremendous messages to them because they were definite in their beliefs that Christ, who was sitting with them, was the Saviour of the world. It is good to hear the testimony of others about Christ but when we become saved, the testimony then becomes ours as well and it becomes a living testimony. They knew He was Christ because of the inward testimony given by the Holy Spirit.