In this week’s Revised Common Lectionary text for the third Sunday in Lent, Jesus encounters a woman at a well in Samaria, a former territory of the defunct Northern Kingdom of Israel and now part of the disputed Palestinian West Bank.
The gist of the story is that Jesus asks the woman for water, then proclaims to her that he can give her ”living water” and more or less declares to her that he is Israel’s long-awaited Messiah.
John 4:5-42 is a long passage with several plot twists: Jesus breaking Jewish social codes by speaking to a) a woman who is b) a Samaritan, his declaration to the woman about her history with men, the differences between Jewish and Samaritan religious practices, the woman’s return from the well to the nearby city to rally the locals, and Jesus’ conversation with his disciples about sowing and harvesting.
Sadly, this passage is often used by Evangelicals to try to ”prove” Jesus’ messiahship and to double down on patriarchal tropes.
But what if the real point isn’t about any of that?
What if the real point is about the water?
This week at New Wineskins, we continue our Lenten collaboration with Justice & Jubilee by stripping away the many distractions presented in this popular story and focusing on what it means for Jesus to ask for water, and for him to offer water of a different kind.
Join us this Sunday, March 12, as we take a deep dive into Jesus’ use of water as a metaphor for liberation. Our discussion video from The Work of the People prompts us to consider the futility of seeking individual salvation without working for the liberation of all.
📺 Click here to watch this week’s video
For the full experience of our collaboration, see the schedule below…you’re welcome to participate in any or all of the following:
5:30pm ET: Justice & Jubilee Message & Music (YouTube livestream)
6:00pm ET: New Wineskins Happy Half-Hour (informal meet & greet time…see link below)
6:30pm ET: New Wineskins Presentation & conversation begin (see link below)
Join us for Lent with Justice & Jubilee!
Every week during Lent, Justice and Jubilee will host their regular YouTube live premier at 5:30pm (Eastern Time) and invite participants to join us in our New Wineskins Virtual Theology Pub powered by Zoom for Happy Half-Hour from 6:00-6:30pmET for a time of conversation and community.
We’ll then hold our regular 6:30pmET discussion focused on how we might look at the J&J topic through the lens of deconstruction, seeking to find deeper, perhaps unexpected meanings that inform our collective justice & liberation work.
Feb. 26: Tempted (Matthew 4:1-11) Mar. 5: Called (Gen 12:1-4a & John 3:1-17)
- Mar. 12: Quenched (Exodus 17:1-7 & John 4:5-42)
- Mar. 19: Anointed (1 Samuel 16:1-13 & John 9:1-41)
- Mar. 26: Raised (Ezekiel 37:1-14 & John 11:1-45)
- Apr. 2: Palm Sunday (Details TBA)
- Apr. 7: Good Friday (Details TBA)
- Apr. 9: Easter Sunday (Details TBA)
If you haven’t already signed up for our weekly email newsletter, now would be a great time to do it so you don’t miss any of this cool collaboration!
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Feature image: Jacob’s Well, West Bank, Palestine, 2019 (Image by Joe Webb. All rights reserved)