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John 4 International Children’s Bible (ICB)

Jesus and a Samaritan Woman

The Pharisees heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more followers than John. (But really Jesus himself did not baptize people. His followers did the baptizing.) Jesus knew that the Pharisees had heard about him. So he left Judea and went back to Galilee. On the way he had to go through the country of Samaria.

In Samaria Jesus came to the town called Sychar. This town is near the field that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there. Jesus was tired from his long trip. So he sat down beside the well. It was about noon. A Samaritan woman came to the well to get some water. Jesus said to her, “Please give me a drink.” (This happened while Jesus’ followers were in town buying some food.)

The woman said, “I am surprised that you ask me for a drink. You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan.” (Jews are not friends with Samaritans.[a])

10 Jesus said, “You don’t know what God gives. And you don’t know who asked you for a drink. If you knew, you would have asked me, and I would have given you living water.”

11 The woman said, “Sir, where will you get that living water? The well is very deep, and you have nothing to get water with. 12 Are you greater than Jacob, our father? Jacob is the one who gave us this well. He drank from it himself. Also, his sons and flocks drank from this well.”

13 Jesus answered, “Every person who drinks this water will be thirsty again. 14 But whoever drinks the water I give will never be thirsty again. The water I give will become a spring of water flowing inside him. It will give him eternal life.”

15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water. Then I will never be thirsty again. And I will not have to come back here to get more water.”

16 Jesus told her, “Go get your husband and come back here.”

17 The woman answered, “But I have no husband.”

Jesus said to her, “You are right to say you have no husband. 18 Really you have had five husbands. But the man you live with now is not your husband. You told the truth.”

19 The woman said, “Sir, I can see that you are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain. But you Jews say that Jerusalem is the place where people must worship.”

21 Jesus said, “Believe me, woman. The time is coming when you will not have to be in Jerusalem or on this mountain to worship the Father. 22 You Samaritans worship what you don’t understand. We Jews understand what we worship. Salvation comes from the Jews. 23 The time is coming when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth. That time is now here. And these are the kinds of worshipers the Father wants. 24 God is spirit. Those who worship God must worship in spirit and truth.”

25 The woman said, “I know that the Messiah is coming.” (Messiah is the One called Christ.) “When the Messiah comes, he will explain everything to us.”

26 Then Jesus said, “He is talking to you now. I am he.”

27 Just then his followers came back from town. They were surprised because they saw Jesus talking with a woman. But none of them asked, “What do you want?” or “Why are you talking with her?”

28 Then the woman left her water jar and went back to town. She said to the people, 29 “A man told me everything I have ever done. Come see him. Maybe he is the Christ!” 30 So the people left the town and went to see Jesus.

31 While the woman was away, the followers were begging him, “Teacher, eat something!”

32 But Jesus answered, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.”

33 So the followers asked themselves, “Did somebody already bring Jesus some food?”

34 Jesus said, “My food is to do what the One who sent me wants me to do. My food is to finish the work that he gave me to do. 35 You say, ‘Four more months to wait before we gather the grain.’ But I tell you, open your eyes. Look at the fields that are ready for harvesting now. 36 Even now, the one who harvests the crop is being paid. He is gathering crops for eternal life. So now the one who plants can be happy along with the one who harvests. 37 It is true when we say, ‘One person plants, but another harvests the crop.’ 38 I sent you to harvest a crop that you did not work for. Others did the work, and you get the profit from their work.”[b]

39 Many of the Samaritans in that town believed in Jesus. They believed because of what the woman said: “He told me everything I have ever done.” 40 The Samaritans came to Jesus and begged him to stay with them. So he stayed there two days. 41 Many more believed because of the things he said.

42 They said to the woman, “First we believed in Jesus because of what you told us. But now we believe because we heard him ourselves. We know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

Jesus Heals an Officer’s Son

43 Two days later, Jesus left and went to Galilee. 44 (Jesus had said before that a prophet is not respected in his own country.) 45 When Jesus arrived in Galilee, the people there welcomed him. They had seen all the things he did at the Passover Feast in Jerusalem. They had been at the Passover Feast, too.

46 Jesus went to visit Cana in Galilee again. This is where Jesus had changed the water into wine. One of the king’s important officers lived in the city of Capernaum. This man’s son was sick. 47 The man heard that Jesus had come from Judea and was now in Galilee. He went to Jesus and begged him to come to Capernaum and heal his son. His son was almost dead. 48 Jesus said to him, “You people must see signs and miracles before you will believe in me.”

49 The officer said, “Sir, come before my child dies.”

50 Jesus answered, “Go. Your son will live.”

The man believed what Jesus told him and went home. 51 On the way the man’s servants came and met him. They told him, “Your son is well.”

52 The man asked, “What time did my son begin to get well?”

They answered, “It was about one o’clock yesterday when the fever left him.”

53 The father knew that one o’clock was the exact time that Jesus had said, “Your son will live.” So the man and all the people of his house believed in Jesus.

54 That was the second miracle that Jesus did after coming from Judea to Galilee.

Footnotes:

  1. 4:9 Jews . . . Samaritans. This can also be translated “Jews don’t use things that Samaritans have used.”
  2. 4:35-38 Look at . . . their work. As a farmer sends workers to harvest grain, Jesus sends his followers out to bring people to God.
International Children’s Bible (ICB)

The Holy Bible, International Children’s Bible® Copyright© 1986, 1988, 1999, 2015 by Tommy Nelson™, a division of Thomas Nelson. Used by permission.

John 4 New International Version (NIV)

Jesus Talks With a Samaritan Woman

Now Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that he was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples. So he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee.

Now he had to go through Samaria. So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about noon.

When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, “Will you give me a drink?” (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)

The Samaritan woman said to him, “You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?” (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.[a])

10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”

11 “Sir,” the woman said, “you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his livestock?”

13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”

16 He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.”

17 “I have no husband,” she replied.

Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. 18 The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.”

19 “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. 20 Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”

21 “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22 You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”

25 The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.”

26 Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.”

The Disciples Rejoin Jesus

27 Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman. But no one asked, “What do you want?” or “Why are you talking with her?”

28 Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, 29 “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” 30 They came out of the town and made their way toward him.

31 Meanwhile his disciples urged him, “Rabbi, eat something.”

32 But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.”

33 Then his disciples said to each other, “Could someone have brought him food?”

34 “My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work. 35 Don’t you have a saying, ‘It’s still four months until harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. 36 Even now the one who reaps draws a wage and harvests a crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together. 37 Thus the saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. 38 I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor.”

Many Samaritans Believe

39 Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. 41 And because of his words many more became believers.

42 They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

Jesus Heals an Official’s Son

43 After the two days he left for Galilee. 44 (Now Jesus himself had pointed out that a prophet has no honor in his own country.) 45 When he arrived in Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him. They had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, for they also had been there.

46 Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. 47 When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.

48 “Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”

49 The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”

50 “Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.”

The man took Jesus at his word and departed. 51 While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. 52 When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him.”

53 Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and his whole household believed.

54 This was the second sign Jesus performed after coming from Judea to Galilee.

Footnotes:

  1. John 4:9 Or do not use dishes Samaritans have used
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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