Go Get Your Husband! The Intriguing Story of the Woman at the Well

‘…well said…you spoke truly.’ John 4:17,18 NKJV

A Word for Today

In His talk with the Samaritan woman, Jesus offered something better than actual water which she could have given him from the well. He showed great interest in this woman who had had five husbands and was currently sleeping with one who was not. She wasn’t a person that in their custom he should have been speaking to, yet he was not afraid to go against the traditions of the day.

Let’s revisit the story:

It was around noon that Jesus came to a well in Samaria. He and his disciples had left Judea where the disciples of John were trying to decide who had more baptisms (not the focus of this story). And they were tired and hungry. Jesus decided to stay at this well while his disciples went in search of food. It was at this point ‘the woman’ came into focus.

This woman, who’s name was not mentioned in the narrative, was a Samaritan. The fact that five husbands had already gone before suggests a high degree of attractiveness. At this point she was courting a brave sixth. As she approached the well, she caught Jesus’ attention….

Hebrews 4:15 says, ‘For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.’ This scenario at the well might have presented danger to an unsuspecting visitor. The disciples were no where around. The Man was tired. Thirsty. And met a woman who supposedly knew how to acquire husbands.

Upon asking for a drink of water, the astonished Samaritan replied, ‘How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me?’ Jesus’ response was baffling to her, no doubt. He had Living Water, but it wasn’t the water that he needed to quench his thirst. The Living Water that he offered described in John 7: 37-39 referred to the Holy Spirit. For this she was ready to receive but not before Jesus made the request—‘Go get your husband.’ Why? Had the conversation gone too far?

As it was established that no husband existed, Jesus proceeded to explain the meaning of a ‘true worshipper.’ With little regard for her ethnic and religious background, or sex, he declared, ‘God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.’

As the disciples returned and discovered their Master conversing with the Samaritan woman, they marveled. After accepting that Jesus is the Messiah, she ran off to tell others.

In the book ‘Our Father Cares,’ p. 53, the author states:

‘The Lord desires that His word of grace be brought home to every soul. To a great degree this must be accomplished by personal labor. This was Jesus’ method. His work was largely made up of personal interviews. Through one soul the message was then extended to several others. If we follow in the footsteps of Jesus, we must seek to help others as He did.’

Three takeaways:

  1. Being left alone is not an excuse to fall prey to temptation. Staying with the pack has its benefits, but our salvation is an individual process.
  2. Be filled with Living Water. Even when our physical needs are not being met, it is the presence of the Spirit that can keep us from falling. It is also the presence of the Spirit that can allow us to witness effectively.
  3. Share good news to all regardless of nationality, sex, ethnicity, or other socio-demographics. Kindness can have a ripple effect. The acceptance and knowledge of Christ as our Savior is not information that can be contained. It must be passed on.

A Prayer for Today

Lord, give us the courage to spread the good news of your saving grace. Fill us with your Spirit. Help us to be true worshippers in spirit and in truth. Cover us and protect us from the adversary who like a roaring lion seeks to devour. Thank you for inspiring us and showing us the way to witness to all. In Jesus’ name, amen.


References: John 4:1-30; John 7:37-39; Hebrews 4:15; EGW Our Father Cares. ‘Fill My Cup Lord,’ Richard Blanchard, SDA Hymnal 493.