John 4 Notes.docx

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Religious Studies
Stephen Westerholm

John 4 - [MISSING ] - Hermeneutic of good will - Hermeneutic of suspicion - The Good Samaritan: - Illuminating story about life in which we can see ourselves - Compare ourselves to the Samaritan, tells us how we should act in situations in our lives - Typical selves and ask if we’ve been like the priest and levite or been like the Samaritan - Stories in john are also not supposed to just make us see them at stories of the past but relate them to the present - John’s term for signs was miracles and the point of calling it signs is that there’s more to the miracles than the miracles themselves, they point to something - Figures with whom Jesus speaks seem to be a representative figure and see analogies in our own lives to what they say, what we need to know, what Jesus had to say to them - In the end, the writer wasn’t interested in nicodemus but what he represented – convo showed inadequacy of life in the flesh and the need for a rebirth (John 3) o Nicodemus was there to ask all the (dumb) questions so Jesus could answer o Nicodemus is there for the first 10 verses then disappears as Jesus goes in a monologue o He was just a representative of ‘the best the world can offer’ To what extent is John interested in the Samaritan woman as a person? - Samaritan woman unlike Nicodemus is present throughout the whole chapter - John 4 works better as a dialogue than John 3 - Woman takes on more of a personality herself than Nicodemus did - She is also meant to be a representative figure 1) She’s a woman: something the story makes something of; Rabbi counseled against 1 of 1 conversations with women due to the issue of morality and temptation  only mention is when says the disciples were surprised she was talking to a women 2) Immorality: She had 5 husbands and was living with one who was not her husband  may suggest adultery, the one she`s with now may not be her husband but she may have a husband.. but he is not him  typical of Jesus to associate with this type of person; “taxcollectors, sinners, prostitutes”  refers to the obviously notoriously dishonest or immoral  often criticized of Jesus throughout the Gospels – Jesus says those who are healthy do not need a doctor  Jesus’ ministry was directed to those in greatest need of Him, not the righteous – “ seek and save those who are loft”  emphasis of the story doesn’t lie here Jesus doesn’t dwell on it but is an important characteristic of her 3) She’s an outsider, not a Jew: the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans  mentioned straight from the beginning of their conversations  makes a point that distinctions between Jews and Samaritans is of the past / will fade?  she is representative of an outsider - 3 mentions of the Samaritans in Luke’s gospel 1) The Good Samaritan 2) 10 lepers who Jesus healed, only one came back to thank him, he was a Samaritan 3) Jesus going through the region of Samaria on their way up to Jerusalem  not received well by the Samaritans The Samaritans and Jews - 12 Tribes of Israel – for a time they were all united under one monarch (Saul, David, Solomon) - After solomon’s reign, they split into two regions: - Southern region of Judah stayed faithful, capital was in Jerusalem o Referred to as Judah o Fell to the bablylonians 587-586 BC - Northern region were not faithful to the descendants of David, had their own monarchs and kings and dynasties, none of which lasted more than 4 generations o Referred to as Israel o That whole region was referred to as Samaria o Northern kingdom fell to the Assyrians in 722-721 BC o Assyrians deported much of the population and no more is known about them o Assyrians also brought people in from other nations and settled them in the northern kingdom o Southern region viewed northern region as fake, not true descendants since they included outsiders, considered their worship as fake o Offered to help at a certain time but Southern region rejected it which began tension between the two groups o Built their own temple but people of Judah burned that temple  Gerizim Jesus and the Woman’s
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