Jesus’ Encounter with the Samaritan Woman in Its Narrative Context
Most of the episodes in the first of part of John’s Gospel, the so-called Book of Signs (1:19-12:50), involve Jesus’ interaction with Jewish religious authorities and institutions. Jesus’ self-revelation through “signs,” John’s word for Jesus’ miraculous acts, and through sayings, particularly the “I am” discourses, occurs in the context of critical and often hostile interaction with Jewish religious authorities. Consider how John’s account of Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan woman (4:1-42) fits within a narrative that presents a sustained critique of Jewish religious authorities and institutions.
- Note how Jesus turns the Samaritan woman’s remark about the religious reason for division between Jews and Samaritans into a critique of religion institution in general. How do Jesus’ comments about worship in Jerusalem relate to his action at the temple and his proclamation about it in chapter 2?
- How do Jesus’ comments about the Jerusalem temple in chapters 2 and 4 relate to testimony about the activity of God’s Logos in the prologue (1:18)? Note the statement, “The Word (Logos) became flesh and lived among us” (1:14; NRSV). The Greek word translated “lived” literally means “pitched a tent.” For a discussion of what this means in a Jewish context, see Dorothy Ann Lee’s comments in NIB One Volume Commentary, p. 713. Note the reference to “my tent” in Sirach 24:8, in the midst of verses describing the work of Wisdom. In the sections “Christology” and “Background of the Prologue” in Introducing Jesus and the Gospels (277-279), Murphy discusses parallels between the work of Wisdom in Jewish scripture and Christ’s work as the Logos. Consider how John’s Gospel affirms the universal scope of the redemptive work of the Logos in contrast to Sirach’s description of God creating a dwelling place for Wisdom in the Jerusalem temple.
- Comparing Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan woman with his encounter with Nicodemus. Does the Samaritan woman understand Jesus’ testimony about himself and his work any better than Nicodemus? How does her action after her encounter with Jesus compare with that of Nicodemus? Consider how this episode focuses on the relation of faith to understanding, a theme that arises later in episodes involving Jesus interaction with his disciples (6:60-71) and his brothers (7:1-8).
- Note the interpretative comment for 4:16-19 in NISB. Based on your analysis of how 4:1-42 functions within narrative structure of John’s Gospel, do you agree with Gail O’Day’s judgment that John’s account of Jesus and the Samaritan woman “has been consistently misinterpreted”? If this judgment is correct, why is it? Is Jesus’ critique of religious authorities and institutions in John’s Gospel relevant to Christian churches today?
ckean theory arguably allows for the emergence of a political vacuum where necessity for the use of executive prerogative as suspending law but not creating new law, or necessity as excusing illegal conduct without rendering it legal, or suspending law, may allow for the exploitation of such a political gap by the executive without the adjudication of the legislature. In this way, one cannot acknowledge the legitimacy of extralegal action without weakening the conviction that legitimate action must accord with the law; by imbuing such authority to the executive, it may call into question the natural and authoritative law as set into place by the representatives of the legislature, thus undermining their jurisdiction over the regulation of the scope of prerogative. Furthermore, Locke’s prerogative theory is largely dependent upon the the legislature as representative of the people, and wider society as elected officials. The enforcement of both natural laws and the executive are, according the Lockean theory, dependent upon the support of the common good; “Such consent is expressed not only through voluntary compliance with a rule, but also through its persistent recognition as authoritative coupled with consistent efforts to adjudicate violations and coerce compliance.” Thus, it is critical that governments are charged by the consent of the individual, in order for the just execution of such prerogative powers at the hand of the executive; “i.e. the consent of the majority, giving it either by themselves, or their representatives chosen by them”. In this way, “the true basis of any “law,” whether constitutional or international, appears to be relatively universal acceptance of—or consent to—a rule within a relevant community.” It may however be considered that by endowing the executive with such scope regarding the use of prerogative that a state of tyranny may emerge as these powers become unchecked and thus exploited. This may occur situationally where it becomes difficult to distinguish between legitimate use of prerogative and tyranny; moreover alluring “the exercise of power beyond right”. It is in this case, Locke states, that dispute may emerge between the executive and the legislature; rule by legislation and rule by prerogative each preserve the political community and reflect its foundation out of the state of nature. Therefore, one may argue that therefore, the executive and the legislature do not easily coexist in the constitution, furthermore providing no means to judge the rightful use of prerogative. Others may consider Locke’s power to act outside of normal law >GET ANSWER