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Farming For Eternity

Gospel of John  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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“Why Are You Talking With Her?”

Jesus had been talking to the Samaritan woman…having a Gospel conversation…
Just as the conversation between Jesus and the woman reaches its high point the disciples return. None of them ask, “Why are you talking with her?” The disciples didn’t say it but they were certainly thinking it!
Jewish thought — For a rabbi to talk with a woman, even his own wife, was at best a waste of time and at worst a diversion from his study and teaching…and therefore potentially a great evil that could lead one to hell!
“One of their sayings ran, “A man shall not be alone with a woman in an inn, not even with his sister or his daughter, on account of what men may think. A man shall not talk with a woman in the street, not even with his own wife, and especially not with another woman, on account of what men may say.”
The Pillar New Testament Commentary: The Gospel according to John 9. Jesus and the Samaritan Woman (4:1–42)

Some rabbis went so far as to suggest that to provide their daughters with a knowledge of the Torah was as inappropriate as to teach them lechery, i.e. to sell them into prostitution

Some rabbis went so far as to suggest that to provide their daughters with a knowledge of the Torah was as inappropriate as to teach them lechery, i.e. to sell them into prostitution
Add to this fact that the woman was a Samaritan…and in the disciples eyes you have an unexplainable moment in the life of their teacher.
Some
Carson, D. A. (1991). The Gospel according to John (p. 227). Leicester, England; Grand Rapids, MI: Inter-Varsity Press; W.B. Eerdmans.
The disciples didn’t understand what Jesus was doing but they had learned enough to know that He always had a good reason for what He did…so they kept their mouth shut.
One of their sayings ran, “A man shall not be alone with a woman in an inn, not even with his sister or his daughter, on account of what men may think. A man shall not talk with a woman in the street, not even with his own wife, and especially not with another woman, on account of what men may say.
Morris, L. (1995). The Gospel according to John (p. 243). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
He had just revealed to her that He was the Messiah. She wanted to believe this and was convinced, on account of His supernatural knowledge of her life, that He was. She leaves her water jug and runs into town to tell folks she thinks she has found the Messiah.
She is so excited about what has happened that she cannot be slowed down…These people who she undoubtedly avoided…as we can see from the time of day she went to the well and the fact she went alone…she now cannot wait to see and tell them of what has happened to her...
She tells the people in town, “Come see a man who told me everything I ever did.” Of course this is not technically the case…He did not rehearse every moment of her existence on earth…but He did highlight the pain she had been carrying around…the moments most significant to her…Her messy and sinful personal life was most important in her thought about her life.
She asks the question, “Could he be the Messiah?” She says these words tentatively…She hopes it to be the case and is looking for confirmation of her hopes.
The people are impressed with her excitement and her testimony of her conversation with Jesus…and so they set out to see Him for themselves.
We might stop at this moment and consider what we have read so far…Jesus took someone society has cast off and deemed of little value…someone who had been abused, used and discarded…
Because a woman's vocal cords are shorter than a man's she can actually speak with less effort than he can. Shorter vocal cords not only cause a woman's voice to be more highly pitched, but also require less air to become agitated, making it possible for her to talk more with less energy expended. 
Because a woman's vocal cords are shorter than a man's she can actually speak with less effort than he can. Shorter vocal cords not only cause a woman's voice to be more highly pitched, but also require less air to become agitated, making it possible for her to talk more with less energy expended. 
But no…it wasn’t because of her vocal chords…or her outstanding character…or her position within the community...
Because a woman's vocal cords are shorter than a man's she can actually speak with less effort than he can. Shorter vocal cords not only cause a woman's voice to be more highly pitched, but also require less air to become agitated, making it possible for her to talk more with less energy expended. 
Jesus took someone society has cast off and deemed of little value…someone who had been abused, used and discarded…
Because a woman's vocal cords are shorter than a man's she can actually speak with less effort than he can. Shorter vocal cords not only cause a woman's voice to be more highly pitched, but also require less air to become agitated, making it possible for her to talk more with less energy expended. 
He took her and loved her…gave her value...made her feel valued…and ultimately made her one of His own…and subsequently one of His ministers of God’s grace.
This is what the sermon is about this morning…God loves you…you are valuable to Him…He wants to save your life from sin…He wants you to be a part of His family…He wants to make you a part of what He is doing in the world today.
Don’t ever put God in a box…Don’t ever limit, by a small estimation of self and God, what He can do for and with you!
This is what the sermon is about this morning…God loves you…whoever you are…He deems you valuable

Priorities

In order to be a part of what God is doing in the world around us…we must first become His follower…and then…make sure our priorities right so He and His work come first.
H. L. Hunt made millions as a Texas oilman. He was an aggressive businessman with little regard for time. His chief confidant, John, might be called in the middle of the night as quickly as in the middle of the day. One night at 2:00 AM, Hunt phoned John. He excitedly declared, “John, I just made the greatest trade of my life. I traded the here for the hereafter… I just got saved.” If you have never trusted Christ as your Saviour, you need to trade the here for the hereafter. You need to be saved. It is the wisest decision you will ever make.
One night at 2:00 AM, Hunt phoned John. He excitedly declared, “John, I just made the greatest trade of my life. I traded the here for the hereafter… I just got saved.”
If you have never trusted Christ as your Saviour, you need to trade the here for the hereafter. You need to be saved. It is the wisest decision you will ever make.
Competition for church attendance — All over the country this morning there are youth sporting events taking kids out of worship…not just for a Sunday but Sunday after Sunday after Sunday…Jesus is relegated to a postscript…He is someone to be worshipped when there is time…someone to be served when it is convenient. Folks wonder why their walk with Christ is anemic…why their families are troubled…why their life is a mess…their life is spiritually as it would be if they stopped eating physical food.
Do you know Jesus? Are you a follower of Him? If so…we can continue on with our story for today...
While the woman was headed to town and gathering a crowd the disciples are concerned that Jesus would eat the food they had gone to town to get. Jesus had to still be hungry, and thirsty but He isn’t concerned about it. He is meditating upon His conversation with the woman and uses the moment to teach His disciples about priorities. “I have food you know nothing about.”
Competition for church attendance — All over the country this morning there are youth sporting events taking kids out of worship (so much ministry here)…not just for a Sunday but Sunday after Sunday after Sunday…Jesus is relegated to a postscript…He is someone to be worshipped when there is time…someone to be served when it is convenient. Folks wonder why their walk with Christ is anemic…why their families are troubled…why their life is a mess…their life is spiritually as it would be if they stopped eating physical food.
My Food — The food Jesus is referring to is to do the will of the Father. This is a reference to verse which the disciples would have been very familiar. “Man does not live by bread alone but by every word the at comes from the mouth of the Father.”
Deuteronomy 8:3a HCSB
He humbled you by letting you go hungry; then He gave you manna to eat, which you and your fathers had not known, so that you might learn that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.
“‘The creative will of God, realized in obedience, sustains life’ (Barrett, p. 241). If in his dealings with the Samaritan woman Jesus was performing his Father’s will, there was greater sustenance and satisfaction in that than in any food the disciples could offer him.”
‘The creative will of God, realized in obedience, sustains life’ (Barrett, p. 241). If in his dealings with the Samaritan woman Jesus was performing his Father’s will, there was greater sustenance and satisfaction in that than in any food the disciples could offer him
There are a lot of Christians walking around malnourished because they have not participated in God’s will around them. We need to participate in God’s life…be a part of what He is doing on the earth…our spirit needs this like our physical body needs material food to eat.
It is not enough to read the Bible and pray. It is not enough to go to church regularly. Not enough to be baptized and take communion.
The Christian life is one of obedience to God and participation in His life and work. If you aren’t doing that you will be anemic, weak and spiritually sick.
Carson, D. A. (1991). The Gospel according to John (p. 228). Leicester, England; Grand Rapids, MI: Inter-Varsity Press; W.B. Eerdmans.
The priority of Jesus’ life is to do the will of the Father. It is the major concern of His life. He is single-minded about it. He is using this moment to teach and encourage His disciples to do the same.
It is not enough to read the Bible and pray. It is not enough to go to church regularly. Not enough to be baptized and take communion. The Christian life is one of obedience to God and participation in His life and work. If you aren’t doing that you will be anemic, weak and spiritually sick.
Milt Rood worked for years and years in Spokane as a car salesman. He was also very active with the Union Gospel Mission work with juvenile delinquents. Week by week he'd patiently teach the Word and pray with young boys in trouble. One week Milt went into the Hospital for exploratory surgery. The doctors found he was full of cancer. They sewed him up again and sent him home. He died within a week. After the funeral, Ron Kinley remarked, "It's interesting that at the funeral no one ever asked how many cars he had sold!" 
Milt Rood worked for years and years in Spokane as a car salesman. He was also very active with the Union Gospel Mission work with juvenile delinquents. Week by week he'd patiently teach the Word and pray with young boys in trouble. One week Milt went into the Hospital for exploratory surgery. The doctors found he was full of cancer. They sewed him up again and sent him home. He died within a week. After the funeral, Ron Kinley remarked, "It's interesting that at the funeral no one ever asked how many cars he had sold!" 
Where are your priorities? What is your life about? Are you on mission with God? Working for eternity?
Four Months — “Four more months and then the harvest” was likely an old farmer’s adage...The agricultural year was divided into six two-month periods, seedtime, winter, spring, harvest, summer, and the time of extreme heat. Thus four months elapsed between the end of seedtime and the beginning of harvest. This might well have given rise to a proverbial saying indicating that there is no hurry for a particular task.
The seed may be planted, but there is no way of getting around the months of waiting. Growth is slow and cannot be hurried. But Jesus did not share this view when applied to spiritual things. He had an urgent sense of mission and these words convey something of it to the disciples.
How many literary people today can cite all the rural adages now current? Modern rural sayings exist that are not embodied in formal literary works, and we have no reason for thinking it was otherwise in the first century. There is evidence, moreover, that the agricultural year was divided into six two-month periods, seedtime, winter, spring, harvest, summer, and the time of extreme heat. Thus four months elapsed between the end of seedtime and the beginning of harvest. This might well have given rise to a proverbial saying indicating that there is no hurry for a particular task. The seed may be planted, but there is no way of getting around the months of waiting. Growth is slow and cannot be hurried.83 But Jesus did not share this view when applied to spiritual things. He had an urgent sense of mission and these words convey something of it to the disciples.
Morris, L. (1995). The Gospel according to John (pp. 246–247). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
The time for being a part of what God is doing is now…Billy Graham
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God is calling us to immediate action. The time to love is today…share the Gospel today…pray today…help someone today…today today today…you never know if you will ever have a tomorrow.
Harvest a crop for eternal life — Winning souls will matter for eternity. You will be doing something with your life that makes a difference, not for today, tomorrow or next year but forever…for all time and then beyond time into the eternal.
I sent you to reap what you have not worked for — Jesus says you are reaping a harvest for which you did not sow at all. We stand and build upon the faithfulness and obedience of those who came before us…the work they did with Christ. We reap where they sowed and we sow where future generations will reap.
We are in affect still participating and doing ministry with Topsy Brown, Wally Tingley, and long after we will be participating and doing ministry with those who follow us…because we both sow and reap.
The disciples were standing on the witness and ministry of all of the prophets and people of God from the beginning to John the Baptist…and we stand upon the shoulders of every believer in Christ who has come since…And we sow so those who come behind us might reap too.
We reap and sow and rejoice. We rejoice over the souls harvested in our generation…and we rejoice over the souls who will come to Christ in future generations because of our faithfulness to sow now.
This year is going to be a joyful and challenging one for us as a church…We celebrate 50 years this year…We celebrate the faithfulness of previous generations who sacrificed much…served the Lord greatly with strong faith…building a ministry used by Christ to win souls in our generation…We are the beneficiaries…and we are reaping in so many instances where they have sown.
But it isn’t just the reaping that we are called to do. We are called to sow. The hardest work in the production of a crop is sowing. The sacrifices and hard work required in sowing cannot be ignored or left undone. We must be single minded…we must be a part of God’s work and win souls both today…and tomorrow.
We are in affect still participating and doing ministry with Topsy Brown, Wally and Jean Tingley, Floyd and Ida Gilbert, Bob Petty. We will be participate and do ministry with those who follow us…because we both sow and reap.

Be a Spark

Many Samaritans believed in Jesus as their Messiah…not just because of what the woman had told them but because of what they saw and heard from Jesus Himself after they came to Him.
But the spark was the testimony of that single voice…the voice of an outcast, sinner, broken person who was radically changed by an encounter with the love and grace of Jesus.
That is all God has called us to do really…all that He has called us to be…a spark. We are the conversation starters…we are His hands, feet and mouthpiece in a world which desperately needs to see see, hear and feel the touch of Jesus.
And there isn’t a person here beyond the grace of God to know Jesus and be a spark which might lead someone else to do the same.
H. L. Hunt made millions as a Texas oilman. He was an aggressive businessman with little regard for time. His chief confidant, John, might be called in the middle of the night as quickly as in the middle of the day.
H. L. Hunt made millions as a Texas oilman. He was an aggressive businessman with little regard for time. His chief confidant, John, might be called in the middle of the night as quickly as in the middle of the day. One night at 2:00 AM, Hunt phoned John. He excitedly declared, “John, I just made the greatest trade of my life. I traded the here for the hereafter… I just got saved.”If you have never trusted Christ as your Saviour, you need to trade the here for the hereafter. You need to be saved. It is the wisest decision you will ever make.
One night at 2:00 AM, Hunt phoned John. He excitedly declared, “John, I just made the greatest trade of my life. I traded the here for the hereafter… I just got saved.”
Have you been saved? Are you living saved? Are you on mission with God so that those around you might see Christ in
If you have never trusted Christ as your Saviour, you need to trade the here for the hereafter. You need to be saved. It is the wisest decision you will ever make.
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