The Urgency of Evangelism
“But He needed to go through Samaria.” (John 4:4)
Some time after Christ’s encounter with Nicodemus, He made the decision to leave Judea and head north toward Galilee. Between Judea in the south and Galilee in the north, there is a small section of Israel known as Samaria. Samaria was an area that was heavily influenced by the Babylonians. When the Babylonians captured Israel, they repatriated the land with some of their own men who remarried the native Jewish women. Their resulting offspring became the people known as Samaritans.
The Jews looked down on the Samaritans because they felt they were “half-breeds.” The Samaritans even adopted their own places and customs of worship in an attempt to set themselves apart from the Jews. The Jews showed their contempt for the Samaritans by crossing the Jordan River to avoid going through Samaria on their way to or from Judea. Jesus knew all about the history and the racism, but the Scripture says, “He needed to go through Samaria.” But why?
There was a woman in Samaria who needed to be saved. She was a woman with a bad reputation, and that’s why she was at the well during the middle of the day when Jesus stopped to rest. She attempted to conceal her sin, but Jesus knew all about her five husbands and the live-in boyfriend she was currently with. The woman placed her faith in Jesus and the rest is history. Jesus exemplified the urgency of evangelism – going to places and talking to people that everyone else had cast aside. I wonder if you and I exemplify that same kind of love and urgency to see others won to Christ?