Broken Barriers - The Gospel for All
John 4:4 He had to go through Samaria on the way. 5 Eventually he came to the Samaritan village of Sychar, near the field that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. 6 Jacob’s well was there; and Jesus, tired from the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime. 7 Soon a Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, “Please give me a drink.” 8 He was alone at the time because his disciples had gone into the village to buy some food.
9 The woman was surprised, for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans. She said to Jesus, “You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink?” 10 Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.”
In our world we categorize people and thus we make barriers between ourselves and others. In these categories we can quickly see all kinds of emotions driving them, like jealousy, hatred, and many others. Jesus was a barrier breaker and His pure message of love and truth would never allow the barriers we created in our own minds and our own "little" worlds. As I write this blog I realize that I too categorize people apart from how Jesus views them. One category that stands out in today's world is racism and that happens from all different people groups and all colors are guilty of it. One argument spawns another argument and no one wins the argument because we really are arguing from a slanted perspective and the Word of God blows all of that out of the water.
In the above scripture Jesus is returning to Galilee from Judea and his route will take Him through the dreaded Samaria!! Dreaded by Jews because of their hatred for the Samaritans and the history that could not be left behind. Samaritan's taught their people to hate the Jews and the Jews taught their people to hate the Samaritans all because of the past grievances that caused a hatred that could not be moved beyond. So Jesus, the Savior of The World, goes through Samaria and meets a Samaritan woman at Jacob's well and begins a conversation with her. He is not only breaking a barrier between Jews and Samaritans, but He is breaking another barrier of a man speaking to a woman. In verse 9 of the above scripture the verse is as follows 9 The woman was surprised, for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans. She said to Jesus, “You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink?” Hmmm. What can we learn from this meeting Jesus has with this woman? First of all, Jesus' thinking is far above any worldly prejudice that we have and His Kingdom way of thinking supersedes any previous barriers. Secondly, Jesus' life is about to be poured out in sacrifice for "ALL" the world and salvation is offered to all who come to Him for it. Thirdly, the pettiness we deal with on a human level is done away with and replaced with a desire to see the lost saved..
When we move beyond the temporal earthly issues that are created and fed by selfish, prideful people we begin to see life from a very different viewpoint. This viewpoint for believers is to follow the teaching of Jesus and share the Kingdom message with a lost and dying world. The change in the Apostle Paul's life is a glowing example that this change of heart and life CAN and WILL happen when we are changed by the presence of the Holy Spirit in our life. In Paul's letter to the Galatians He affirmed this change of heart by saying in Chapter 3 verse 28 There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.
So we can vividly see the only answer for all of the hatred and name calling we experience every day in our world is JESUS and only JESUS!! Don't get caught up in earthly battles that are me-centered and prideful. But look at things from this Kingdom Perspective and all the barriers between will melt away. But only with Jesus as our focus.
When our purpose matches with the purpose of Jesus the barriers will fall and true unity will be seen and understood by all. The gospel is for all and Jesus is the only barrier breaker who can make it happen. Time to get in on the heart of the matter and Jesus IS THE HEART. Just remember, Jesus never compromised the Word of God in breaking those barriers because He is the Word.....
The Pilgrimage Continues......