Our stories of redemption and restoration can lead others to encounter the living water, quenching their spiritual thirst and bringing new life. So don't hesitate to share your experiences with others.
John 4:39-42 — The Evangelist — Aneel Aranha
Hello and welcome to the Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha. Today we will reflect on John 4:39-42. Listen.
Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. And because of his words many more became believers.
They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”
What an amazing story! This is what happens when we encounter Christ! We become evangelists!
The Samaritan woman's encounter with Jesus changed not only her life but the lives of others in her community. Her encounter led her to testify about him to people — even those who may have held her in contempt — leading them to their own encounter with the Messiah.
Let us look at the steps that took place.
One, she met Jesus in what may have seemed a chance encounter, but there are no coincidences when it comes to God. It was a divine appointment.
Two, they had a conversation deeper than the well she went to draw water from that pierced her to the depths of her being. She realized her emptiness and how much she needed to be filled.
Three, she discovered that the person she was talking to was the long-awaited Messiah, but instead of being condemned, she met love and forgiveness and mercy.
Four, in an instant, she went from a life of shame and rejection because of her past choices to a woman filled with hope and purpose.
Five, she wanted to share the joy of her salvation with others and went about speaking of her experiences. She drew many people to Christ because of her testimony! She became an evangelist!
Who is an evangelist? An evangelist is someone who shares their personal experiences with Jesus and invites others to have their own encounter with him. Rather than trying to convert people through persuasive arguments or pressure, an evangelist relies on the power of their own testimony to draw people to Christ. "Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did," the Samaritan woman told the townspeople. "Could this be the Messiah?" (John 4:29).
Some believed in Jesus because of what she said. Others were more skeptical. But curious, they invited Jesus to stay with them. His words convinced them of who he was, and they became believers. This is the ripple effect of faith.
As modern-day believers, we can follow the model of the Samaritan woman and become evangelists in our own lives. By sharing our personal experiences of Jesus and the hope we have found in him, we can create opportunities for others to explore their faith and encounter the Savior. Rather than merely convincing others with arguments, our authentic witness can inspire curiosity and openness to discovering Jesus for themselves.
God bless you as you go about doing so.