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Come See for Yourself
by Jonathan McKee

CLICK HERE for a simple PowerPoint for this message.
(Thanks to www.sxc.hu for the background art)

PASSAGE:

John 4:5-42 (NLT)

Eventually he came to the Samaritan village of Sychar, near the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. [6] Jacob's well was there; and Jesus, tired from the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime. [7] Soon a Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, "Please give me a drink." [8] He was alone at the time because his disciples had gone into the village to buy some food.
[9] The woman was surprised, for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans. She said to Jesus, "You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink?"
[10] Jesus replied, "If you only knew the gift God has for you and who I am, you would ask me, and I would give you living water."
[11] "But sir, you don't have a rope or a bucket," she said, "and this is a very deep well. Where would you get this living water? [12] And besides, are you greater than our ancestor Jacob who gave us this well? How can you offer better water than he and his sons and his cattle enjoyed?"
[13] Jesus replied, "People soon become thirsty again after drinking this water. [14] But the water I give them takes away thirst altogether. It becomes a perpetual spring within them, giving them eternal life."
[15] "Please, sir," the woman said, "give me some of that water! Then I'll never be thirsty again, and I won't have to come here to haul water."
[16] "Go and get your husband," Jesus told her.
[17] "I don't have a husband," the woman replied.
Jesus said, "You're right! You don't have a husband- [18] for you have had five husbands, and you aren't even married to the man you're living with now."
[19] "Sir," the woman said, "you must be a prophet ...
[25] The woman said, "I know the Messiah will come-the one who is called Christ. When he comes, he will explain everything to us."
[26] Then Jesus told her, "I am the Messiah!"
[27] Just then his disciples arrived. They were astonished to find him talking to a woman, but none of them asked him why he was doing it or what they had been discussing. [28] The woman left her water jar beside the well and went back to the village and told everyone, [29] "Come and meet a man who told me everything I ever did! Can this be the Messiah?" [30] So the people came streaming from the village to see him ...
[39] Many Samaritans from the village believed in Jesus because the woman had said, "He told me everything I ever did!" [40] When they came out to see him, they begged him to stay at their village. So he stayed for two days, [41] long enough for many of them to hear his message and believe. [42] Then they said to the woman, "Now we believe because we have heard him ourselves, not just because of what you told us. He is indeed the Savior of the world."

MAIN POINT: You can talk to others about what Christ personally did for you by following the example of the woman at the well.

SOUND BYTE: If you haven't experienced Christ, you have nothing to talk about.

RATIONALE:
  1. She experienced His grace.
  2. She expressed it to others.
  3. She invited them to hear more.
TALK:

Introduction

State Your Point - If you haven't experienced Christ, you have nothing to talk about.

Read vs. 5-26

Eventually he came to the Samaritan village of Sychar, near the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. [6] Jacob's well was there; and Jesus, tired from the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime. [7] Soon a Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, "Please give me a drink." [8] He was alone at the time because his disciples had gone into the village to buy some food.
[9] The woman was surprised, for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans. She said to Jesus, "You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink?"
[10] Jesus replied, "If you only knew the gift God has for you and who I am, you would ask me, and I would give you living water."
[11] "But sir, you don't have a rope or a bucket," she said, "and this is a very deep well. Where would you get this living water? [12] And besides, are you greater than our ancestor Jacob who gave us this well? How can you offer better water than he and his sons and his cattle enjoyed?"
[13] Jesus replied, "People soon become thirsty again after drinking this water. [14] But the water I give them takes away thirst altogether. It becomes a perpetual spring within them, giving them eternal life."
[15] "Please, sir," the woman said, "give me some of that water! Then I'll never be thirsty again, and I won't have to come here to haul water."
[16] "Go and get your husband," Jesus told her.
[17] "I don't have a husband," the woman replied.
Jesus said, "You're right! You don't have a husband- [18] for you have had five husbands, and you aren't even married to the man you're living with now."
[19] "Sir," the woman said, "you must be a prophet ...
(When I'm teaching this passage to students and I have limited time - I sometimes skip vs. 20-24. This isn't because they aren't important, but sometimes you need to choose how many things you want to teach in one talk. I skip over these verses in this talk to keep from going on a tangent. You can do what you want.)

[25] The woman said, "I know the Messiah will come-the one who is called Christ. When he comes, he will explain everything to us."
[26] Then Jesus told her, "I am the Messiah!"

Summarize story in your own words: Check this out. Jesus goes to a well and meets this woman drawing water. They start talking about water and thirst and finally Jesus says, "I got some water you can have - that if you drink it - you'll never be thirsty again!"

She's excited and basically says, "Hook me up with this spiritual Gatorade!"

But then Jesus does something. The whole conversation so far has been about water, thirst and fulfillment. She wants the fulfillment that Jesus offered - never to be thirsty again. But instead of giving it to her ... Jesus confronts and gives her an opportunity to own up to her past. He says, "Go and get your husband."

She has a choice now. 1. Lie- maybe tell Jesus that her husband is out of town or that she's not married and lives alone. Or 2. Tell the truth- tell Jesus that really she's had five husbands and she's shacking up with some guy right now!

This was a big deal of course, because back then, laws existed that would have her killed for committing adultery. So it wouldn't be in her best interest to tell Jesus this. But for some reason, she fesses up to the truth, or a piece of it anyway. She tells him ... "I don't have a husband."

Jesus says, "I know, you've had five, and your shacking up with another guy right now." She's astonished that he knows. But the more astonishing thing is what happens next. JESUS STILL OFFERS HER THE ETERNAL LIFE! Despite her past, he still reveals himself as the Messiah.

So the first thing we see in this passage is ...

Point One: She experiences His grace - Jesus didn't hold her past against her. Despite her past, he revealed himself as Messiah anyway

If you haven't experienced Christ, you have nothing to talk about. And she experiences him in a big way. He forgives her for her past- and a rough past it was!

We all would like grace or forgiveness like that.

There's a Spanish story of a father and son who had become estranged. The son ran away, and the father set off to find him. He searched for months to no avail. Finally, in a last desperate effort to find him, the father put an ad in a Madrid newspaper. The ad read: Dear Paco, meet me
in front of this newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you. Your Father. On Saturday 800 Pacos showed up, looking for forgiveness and love from their fathers.

Let's face it. A lot of us have shady pasts. Jesus doesn't care about our past - but he cares where we are going.
Let's check out what happens next:

Read vs. 28-42

[28] The woman left her water jar beside the well and went back to the village and told everyone, [29] "Come and meet a man who told me everything I ever did! Can this be the Messiah?" [30] So the people came streaming from the village to see him ...

[39] Many Samaritans from the village believed in Jesus because the woman had said, "He told me everything I ever did!" [40] When they came out to see him, they begged him to stay at their village. So he stayed for two days, [41] long enough for many of them to hear his message and believe. [42] Then they said to the woman, "Now we believe because we have heard him ourselves, not just because of what you told us. He is indeed the Savior of the world."

Summarize story in your own words: After Jesus is willing to forgive the woman of her past and reveal himself as the Messiah, the one who was sent to save us, she runs and tells everyone what happened.

If you haven't experienced Christ, you have nothing to talk about.

First- she experienced His grace. Now ... that brings us to our next point.

Point Two: She expressed it to others - immediately she told others all about when she met Jesus- she simply told her story.

Look in verse 39, she told everyone, "He told me everything I ever did!"

I can just see some of the guys in the village getting real big eyes ... "Everything?!!"

And her nodding with wide eyes. "Yes- everything! But he is willing to forgive me for it all!"

"All of it?"

"All of it!"

Jesus has forgiven every one of us for our past. Are you excited about that?

I remember when I was really excited about ... (You can use a personal story here of when you found out something exciting: something on-sale, some good news of some kind, etc. and you let as many of your friends know about it as possible!)

When you are really excited about something, don't you feel like sharing your excitement with someone else? If you haven't experienced Christ, you have nothing to talk about. Well, Jesus has given you something to be excited about. Like the woman at the well, God has shown us his grace and forgiveness despite our past. And we can share that with others.

But you know - she did something else that we can do as well ...

Point Three: She invited them to hear more - maybe she didn't have all the answers, but she invited them to come hear for themselves.

In vs. 29 she says, "Come meet the man who told me everything I ever did!"

She invited them to see for themselves. Do you sometimes wish you could talk to your friends about what Jesus has done in your life, but you're afraid you don't have all the answers. Or maybe you just don't know what to say. Maybe you can invite them to church with you, to youth group with you, or to a Christian event where they will hear the Gospel message ... where they'll hear what Jesus did for us all!

(You can use this story or your own personal story. If you use this one - just change the reference from the first person to "there was a girl in a youth group in California who ...") Allison was in a youth group I worked with. She grew up in a home where they didn't go to church or talk about God. She was a pretty messed up kid who hung around a tough crowd of girls. But another friend brought her to youth group once and she heard about a mission trip to Mexico where they were going to work with poor people. Allison liked helping others, so she signed up for the trip.

When she got there she was astonished with the poverty. Allison grew up in a home where she had everything. She had tons of clothes and tons of spending money, even enough to support her little drug habit. But here in Mexico she saw little children covered in dirt, playing in the same clothes every day. Despite their surroundings, these children had the biggest smiles on their faces. Allison spent the week with them, watching these children come to the small church in the village and laugh and sing songs, praising Jesus' name. Allison couldn't understand why these poor children were smiling. What did they have to smile about? Allison did understand one thing. She had everything she wanted, and she DIDN'T have a smile like that. But she wanted it. So right there in Mexico, she got down on her knees in the dirt and gave her life to Jesus.

When she got back to school her friends began to notice a change in her. They asked her what was different. So she told them. "You see I went down to Mexico and saw all these poor children who had absolutely nothing. But there was something different about them. They all had a huge smile on their face. And do you know what the smile was from?"

All her friends nodded their heads no. "No- what was it?"

"It was Jesus. They all had Jesus in their life. And I know this might sound trippy, but I have him now too. And look!" Allison smiled bigger than she ever smiled in her entire life.

Her friends chuckled at first. "Are you serious?"

Allison quickly replied, "Serious as a heart attack! I found Jesus!"

"Well ... is he in Mexico?"

"No ... you can find him here too. Come, I'll show you."

That next Tuesday Allison walked into youth group with four of the SCARIEST LOOKING GIRLS I've ever seen. They had on combat boots and piercings where no-one should have peircings. They came in saying, "If this is good enough for Allison, this is good enough for me."

I saw some girls that you thought you'd never find in church, start going to church because a girl named Allison (restating your main points) 1) experienced His grace, 2) expressed it to others, 3) and she invited them to hear more.

If you haven't experienced Christ, you have nothing to talk about.

Some of you tonight maybe want to experience God's grace. You are excited to hear about a God who is willing to forget your past- but cares about your future.

Some of you have experienced God's grace, but you just haven't expressed it to others. Maybe you feel God convicting your heart tonight to tell your story to others.

Some of you don't know exactly how to talk to others about Jesus, but you know how to invite a friend somewhere. Maybe God is calling you to invite a friend to youth group, church, or an upcoming event where they can hear about Jesus.

Let's close our time together by praying for this right now.


OUTLINE:

Introduction

State Your Point - If you haven't experienced Christ, you have nothing to talk about.

Read vs.5-26

Summarize in your own words

Point One: She experienced His grace- Jesus didn't hold her past against her. Despite her past, he revealed himself as Messiah anyway.

We all would like grace or forgiveness like that- Paco Story

Read vs. 28-42

Summarize in your own words

Point Two: She expressed it to others - immediately she told others all about when she met Jesus- she simply told her story.

Discuss vs. 39

Personal story

Point Three: She invited them to hear more- maybe she didn't have all the answers, but she invited them to come hear for themselves.

Explain vs. 29

Close with Allison story or your own personal story


Jonathan McKee Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices, If I Had a Parenting Do Over, 52 Ways to Connect with Your Smartphone Obsessed Kid; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He has over 20 years youth ministry experience and speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers and parents on his websites, TheSource4YM.com and TheSource4Parents.com. You can follow Jonathan on his blog, getting a regular dose of youth culture and parenting help. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.



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Comments on this post

   Jackson Whitehurst         3/28/2016 6:43:54 PM

This is wonderful narrative of Jesus's encounter with the woman at the well.

   Olbin         5/12/2015 7:05:45 PM

what a good way to present this story. I will definitely use this in Sunday school this week. Thank you for your commitment and ideas that you share with us to make youth easy. God bless.

   Paul         5/18/2012 3:00:41 PM

Beatiful way of narrating the bible story to the youth.Thanks Pastor.

   Chris Finlayson         8/17/2011 7:22:52 AM

I love the simplicity if the Gospel. I wish there were more messages on here. These are great tools to spar from.