There are many stories in the Bible of showing grace to others and Jesus showing grace to His people. One of my favorites is the story of the “Woman at the Well” found in John 4.
Here is a Samaritan woman, a woman who is an outcast even in a place considered to be a polluted land. She arrives at Jacob’s Well to draw water and has the most incredible, life-changing encounter. She encountered Grace face to face.
Here is this man disobeying the law and talking to a woman in public. Not only is she a Samaritan woman, but He is a Jew. We can hear her shock in the following verses:
7 A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” 8 (For his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.) 9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) John 4:7-9
Then, Grace answers.
10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” 11 The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and his livestock.” 13 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again.[b] The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” 15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water.” John 4: 10-15
Jesus goes on to share His knowledge of her lifestyle. He knows she has been married five times. He knows she is currently living with a man who is not her husband. He knows all of these things, but He extends God’s love to her in spite of her.
He extends God’s love to us in spite of us.
That is grace.
I heard it defined like this, “ Grace refreshes the soul which is caught in sin and suffering.” That is what He did for the Samaritan woman. The law wasn’t important to Him. Extending grace to all was.
This grace which we see fully expressed in the forgiveness of sins and salvation, is meant to be shared. Even the Samaritan woman, wrapped up in His loving grace, left her water jar behind to share the news.
- When was the last time you recognized God’s grace?
- What area of your life do you need to extend grace to yourself?
- Think of someone in your life whom you would consider an outcast. How can you extend them grace?
“Grace Wins” by Matthew West (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3a1WKcB7umU)
“Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone” by Chris Tomlin (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-4NFvI5U9w)
“This is Amazing Grace” by Phil WIckham (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFRjr_x-yxU)