Commentary and reflection questions for this weekend’s sermon can be found here.
A helpful way to prepare for worship this weekend will be to compare and contrast the encounters of Jesus and Nicodemus (chapter 3) and with the Samaritan woman (chapter 4). Nicodemus is male, a Jew, a Pharisee, highly regarded, a leader, a teacher and probably very wealthy. He comes to Jesus in the middle of the night and apparently leaves in silence.
The woman is female, nameless, a Samaritan (generally despised by Jews), and maybe despised by her neighbors because of their perceptions of her past. She comes to Jesus in broad daylight and has a remarkable, insightful conversation. Then she hurries back to tell others about her experience with Jesus.
But Nick and the woman have some things in common. He and the woman misunderstand Jesus’ words by taking him too literally. Then Jesus uses their confusion as an opportunity to enter into a life-giving dialogue about fresh, new ways to relate to God. The stories tell us that even shady women and dubious gentlemen who meet Jesus can invite others to “come and see” him—and that’s great news for us!
I hope you’ll come to worship so I can see you ‘round the Table this weekend.