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Chapter 4
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4:1-4 As Jesus so gained knowledge, that the Pharisees heard that/: “Jesus makes and baptizes more disciples than John” – and yet Jesus at any rate did not Himself baptize (continually) however/but His disciples – He ‘let ... be’/left Judea and went again away into Galilee. But (continually) He had to come through, through Samaria.

Word for word: 4:1 (18 words in the Greek text) As so had/gained-knowledge-of the Jesus that heard the Pharisees that Jesus more disciples makes and baptizes than John 4:2 (9 words in the Greek text) and-yet-at-any-rate Jesus he/himself not baptized however the disciples his 4:3 (9 words in the Greek text) let-be the Judea and came/went-away again into the Galilee 4:4 'It-was-(continually)-necessary but him'/'But he-(continually)-had-to'come-through through the Samaria.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

Out of Kadesh towards the king of Edom Moses dispatched away messengers saying: “This is what your brother Israel says: ‘You have insight in every toil having found/befallen us. ... Having dispatched away a messenger (the Lord) led us out, out of Egypt. And now we are in Kadesh, a city out of a part of your frontiers. We will 'come by the side of'/pass through your earth/land. We will not come through, through fields, nor through vineyards, nor we will drink water out of your den/well.’” ... And Edom did not want to give/let Israel 'come by the side of'/pass through his frontiers. And Israel ‘leaned out’/’bent aside’ from him. (Num 20:14,16b-17a,21, Greek OT)

(Balaam said:) “Edom will be an inheritance (of Israel).” (Num 24:18a, Greek OT)

… (The foreign king) went away fleeing out of Judea. (Tobit 1:18a, S)

(Alexander) came through till tops of the earth. (1 Macc 1:3a)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said: “The one understanding the law of the Highest One throughout) will come through in ‘an earth’/’a land’ of alien nations, for he has tried good and bad things in men.” (Sir 39:4b)


The Latter Revelation:

(Joseph) feared to go away (to Judea), but having been given a matter downwards/’according to’ a dream he retired into the parts of Galilee. (Matt 2:22b)

(John the Baptist said:) “I indeed baptize you in water into/’for the purpose of’ a change of mind but the One coming behind me ... will baptize you in holy spirit and fire.” (Matt 3:11)

Having again ‘let ... be’/left (Peter, James and John, Jesus) having gone away prayed. (Matt 26:44a)

Jesus says to (Mariam (א*) from Magdala and the another/other Mary): "Do not fear! Withdraw and bring away a message to the (א*) brothers in order that they may go away into Galilee, and there they will behold Me." (Matt 28:10)

Having 'let ... be'/left (the Pharisees and) having again stepped in (the boat) (Jesus) went away 'into on'/to the other side. (Mark 8:13)

It became/’came about’ in the completing together/’in connection’ with the days of the taking up (of Jesus), and/that He Himself ‘set fast’/directed His (א,*א,A) face to go into Jerusalem. And He dispatched away messengers before His face. And having gone they came into, into a city (א*) of Samaritans as/to make ready for Him. (Luke 9:51-52)

(Jesus) did not baptize/dip Himself before the breakfest/meal. (Luke 11:38b)

It became/’came about’ in the go/going (of Jesus) into/to Jerusalem, (that) He (continually) came through, through a middle of Samaria and Galilea. (Luke 17:11)

(Jesus said to His apostles:) "You will take ability, on the Holy Spirit's having come against, against you, and you will be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in every/all Judea and Samaria and till (the) last/end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

Peter utters towards (the Jews): “Change your minds and let yourselves, everyone/each of you, be baptized on/’for the sake of’ the name of Jesus Christ into/’for the purpose of’ a letting be (alone) of your misses (of the mark of God).” (Acts 2:38a)

So indeed the ones having been sown asunder came through bringing the saying (as) a good little message. But/and having come down into the city of Samaria Philip proclaimed Christ to them. (Acts 8:4-5)

... Samaria had received (and received) the saying of God. ... Having descended (to Samaria Peter and John) prayed on account of (the Samaritans), in that way that they might take holy spirit. For nor yet it ‘was (continually) falling (and having fallen)’/’fell (and had not fallen)’ upon them, not on anyone, but being (and having been) only baptized they (continually) ‘began under’/’were ready’ into/’for the purpose of’ the name of the Lord Jesus. (Acts 8:14a,15-16)

And yet (God) did not let Himself be without witness (in) doing good ... (Acts 14:17a)

(Paul and Barnabas and some other men) ... (continually) came through both Phoenicia and Samaria describing out/’to the full’ the turning next to of the nations. (Acts 15:3a)

(Paul and Timothy) came through ... having been hindered by the Holy Spirit to talk the saying in Asia. (Acts 16:6)

Paul spoke: "John baptized (with) a baptism of a change of mind, saying to the people ‘in order that’/that they might believe into/’for the purpose of’ the One coming after him, this is into/’for the purpose of’ Jesus." Having heard (the disciples in Ephesos) were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. And on Paul's having put/laid hands/’his hands’ on them, the Holy Spirit came against them. (Acts 19:4-6a)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

And John was a witness saying that/: "I have viewed (and view) the Spirit as a pigeon descending out of heaven, and It stayed against Him. And I did not know (and had not known) Him, however/but the One having sent me to baptize in the (P66,א,*א) water, that One spoke to me: ‘(The One) against whom you – according to the circumstances - may behold the Spirit descending and staying against Him, this One is He baptizing in holy spirit.’" (Joh 1:32-33)

(The disciples of John) came towards John and spoke to him: “Rabbi, the One who (continually) was in company with you on the other side of the Jordan, to whom you have been (and are) a witness, behold, this One baptizes and all come towards Him.” (John 3:26)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

The expression ”he must” … has in John at different occasions a deeper sense of a mission according to God's plan. (René Kieffer "Johannesevangeliet" p 102; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

The verb ‘afêken’ carries a sense of 'to leave to itself, to abandon'. With the reaction of 'the Jews' in mind Jesus abandons Jerusalem and Judea, 'his own home'. (Birger Olsson "Structure and Meaning in the Fourth Gospel" p 127)

Although not only in the New Testament, but in 1 Macc. x. 30, and in the writings of Josephus, Western Palestine is divided into the provinces of Judea, Samaria, and Galilee, the Rabbis, whose ideas were shaped by the observations of Judaism, ignore this division. For them Palestine consisted only of Judaea, Peraea, and Galilee. Samaria appears merely as a strip intervening between Judaea and Galilee, being ‘the land of the Cuthaeans’. Nethertheless it was not regarded like heathen lands, but pronounced clean. (Alfred Edersheim "The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah Part I" p 398)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: LarsOlov Eriksson, F. Godet, Birger Thureson, David F. Wright.


My own comments and speculations:

In a restoration perspective we see how Israel, who was not allowed to come through, through the closely related Edom, now – in the person of Jesus – must come through, through the closely related Samaria (cf. Num 24:18).

Jesus did not baptize in water from down, from the earth. He is the One baptizing in Holy Spirit from above, from heaven. Men baptize in water. God baptizes in Holy Spirit.

Paul said to the believers in Corinth: "Christ did not dispatch me away to baptize however/but to bring a good little message ." (1 Cor 1:17a)


Greek words:

aperchomai (go away; “literally”: come away) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Tobit 1:18(S); Matt 2:22; 26:44; Mark 8:13; John 4:3 – Tobit 10:13(14); Judith 2:22; 7:32; 8:16; 1 Macc 6:57; 7:20; 9:36; 11:61; 2 Macc 14:34; Sir 14:19; Epistle of Jeremiah v 57. Matt 4:24; 5:30; 8:18-19,21,32-33; 9:7; 10:5; 13:25,28,46; 14:15-16,25; 16:4,21; 18:30; 19:22; 20:4(5); 21:29-30; 22:5,22; 25:10,18,25,46; 26:36,42; 27:5,60; 28:10; Mark 1:20,35,42; 3:13; 5:17,20,24; 6:27(28),32,36-37,46; 7:24,30; 9:43; 10:22; 11:4; 12:12; 14:10,12,39; Luke 1:23,38; 2:15; 5:13-14,25; 7:24; 8:31,37,39; 9:57,59-60; 10:30; 17:23; 19:32; 22:4,13; 23:33; 24:12,24; John 4:8,28; 5:15; 6:1,22,66,68; 9:7,11; 10:40; 11:28,46,54; 12:19,36; 16:7; 18:6; 20:10. Acts 4:15; 5:26; 9:17; 10:7; 16:39; 23:32; Rom 15:28; Gal 1:17; Jas 1:24; Jude v 7; Rev 9:12; 10:9; 12:17; 16:2; 18:14; 21:1,4.

afiêmi (let be) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 26:44; Mark 8:13; John 4:3; Acts 14:17 - Tobit 10:5,7(8); 11:2; 14:6; Judith 6:13; 1 Macc 1:48; 10:28,30,32-33,42; 13:16,19,39; 15:5,8; Wisdom of Solomon 10:14; Sir 2:11; 6:27; 27:19; 28:2. Matt 3:15; 4:11,20,22; 5:24,40; 6:12,14-15; 7:4; 8:15,22; 9:2,5-6; 12:31-32; 13:30,36; 15:14; 18:12,21,27,32,35; 19:14,27,29; 22:22,25; 23:13,23,38; 24:2,40-41; 26:56; 27:49-50; Mark 1:18,20,31,34; 2:5,7,9-10; 3:28; 4:12,36; 5:19,37; 7:8,12,27; 10:14,28-29; 11:6,16,25; 12:12,19-20,22; 13:2,34; 14:6,50; 15:36-37; Luke 4:39; 5:11,20-21,23-24; 6:42; 7:47-49; 8:51; 9:60; 10:30; 11:4,42(P45,א*); Luke 12:10,39; 13:8,35; 17:3-4,34, 18:16,28-29; 19:44; 21:6; 23:34; John 4:3,28,52; 8:29; 10:12; 11:44,48; 12:7; 14:18,27; 16:28,32; 18:8; 20:23. Acts 5:38; 8:22; Rom 1:27; 4:7; 1 Cor 7:11-13; Heb 2:8; 6:1; Jas 5:15; 1 John 1:9; 2:12; Rev 2:4,20; 11:9.

dierchomai (come through) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) 1 Macc 1:3; Sir 39:4; Luke 17:11; John 4:4; Acts 8:4; 15:3; 16:6 – Esther 6:11; Tobit 1:21; 5:10; Judith 6:6; 13:10; 16:9; 1 Macc 3:8; 11:62; 12:10; Matt 12:43; Mark 4:35; 10:25; Luke 2:15,35; 4:30; 5:15; 8:22; 9:6; 11:24; 19:1,4; John 4:15. Acts 8:40; 9:32,38; 10:38; 11:19; 12:10; 13:6,14; 14:24; 15:41; 17:23; 18:23,27; 19:1,21; 20:2,25; Rom 5:12; 1 Cor 10:1; 16:5; 2 Cor 1:16; Heb 4:14.

Ioudaia (Judea) (NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Tobit 1:18; Matt 2:22; John 4:3 –2 Macc 1:1, Bel and the Dragon v 33(Theod); Matt 2:1,5; 3:1,5; 4:25; 19:1; 24:16; Mark 3:7; 10:1; 13:14; Luke 1:5,26(א*); Luke 1:65; 2:4; 3:1; 4:44; 5:17; 6:17; 7:17; 21:21; 23:5; John 4:47,54; 7:1,3; 11:7. Acts 1:8; 2:9; 8:1; 9:31; 10:37; 11:1,29; 12:19; 15:1; 21:10; 26:20; 28:21; Rom 15:31; 2 Cor 1:16; Gal 1:22; 1 Thess 2:14.

kaitoige (and yet at any rate) John 4:2. This particle does not occur in the rest of the Bible. However, we have the word “kaitoi” (and yet) in 4 Macc 2:6; 5:18; 7:13 and in Acts 14:17. Furthermore we have the expression “kai ge” (and at any rate) in Acts 2:18 and 17:27.

pleiôn (more) (in the NT + one example in the Apocrypha) John 4:1 – Epistle of Jeremiah v 18; Matt 5:20; 6:25; 12:41-42; 20:10; 21:36; 26:53; Mark 12:43; Luke 3:13 (pleon); 7:42-43; 9:13; 11:31-32,53; 12:23; 21:3; John 4:41; 7:31; 15:2; 21:15 (pleon). Acts 2:40; 4:17,22; 13:31; 15:28 (pleon); 18:20; 19:32; 20:9; 21:10; 23:13,21; 24:4,11,17; 25:14; 27:12,20; 28:23; 1 Cor 9:19; 10:5; 15:6; 2 Cor 2:6; 4:15; 9:2; Phil 1:14; 2 Tim 2:16; 3:9; Heb 3:3; 7:23; 11:4; Rev 2:19.

Samareia (Samaria) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Luke 17:11; John 4:4; Acts 1:8; 8:14 – Tobit 14:4; Judith 1:9; 4:4; 1 Macc 3:10; 10:38; 2 Macc 15:1. John 4:7; Acts 8:1,5,9; 9:31; 15:3.


Additional studies:

Deut 2:26-27; Judges 11:16-20; 1 Kings 16:24,28; 2 Kings 17:24-26; Ezek 16:46; 1 Macc 5:48; Matt 4:12; Mark 1:14; Luke 4:14,43; 17:11; John 1:43; 2:1; 3:22; 4:43,54; 7:1,9; 1 Cor 1:13-15.


J.E. Botha "Reader 'entrapment' as literary device in John 4:1-42"; Neotestamentica 24.1 (1990): 37-48.

John Broadus "True Spiritual Worship: John 4:1-42"; Southern Baptist Journal of Theology 2.4 (Winter 1998): 24-33.

Patrick L. Dickerson "The Sources of the Account of the Mission to Samaria in Acts 8:5-25"; (The Journal) Novum testamentum 39.3 (1997): 210-234.

David S. Dockery "Reading John 4:1-45: Some Diverse Hermeneutical Perspectives"; Criswell Theological Review 3.1 (1988): 127-140.

(Original version 2007-12-01; 2009-02-08; 2010-10-14; 2013-10-24; 2014-10-01)

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4:5-6a ... * (א*) being said/called Sychar, ‘neighbour of’/’hard by’ the little district, which Jacob gave to his son Joseph. But it/there (continually) was the spring of Jacob.

Word for word: 4:5 (13 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) being-said Sychar neighbour (of)-the little-district which gave Jacob (to)-the Joseph the son his. 4:6a was-(continually) but there spring (of)-the (of)-Jacob.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

Jacob came into Salim, a city of Shechem ... And he acquired the portion/part of the field, where he there ‘caused ... to stand’/’set up’ his tent, from the side of Hamor, father of Shechem. ... (Gen 33:18a,19, Greek OT)

(Israel said to Joseph:) "I give you Shechem, lifted/taken out (as one portion) over/’more than’ your brothers, which I took out of a hand of Amorites in/with my dagger and a bow." (Gen 48:22, Greek OT)

Israel came into Ailim, and there (continually) were twelve springs of waters and seventy trunks of dates, but/and there they threw up a wall to the side of, to the side of the waters. (Ex 15:27, Greek OT)

The priest shall carry (the burnt offering) to opposite the Lord and ‘propitiate out’/propitiate (the woman who has brought forth a child) and make her clean from the spring of her blood. (Lev 12:7a, Greek OT)

(In the desolate district at a well) Israel sang this song on account of the well: "’Begin/’spring up’ out of it, (O), well. Leaders dug it! Kings of nations hewed it out." (Num 21:17-18a, Greek OT)

(The sons of Israel) led/brought up the bones of Joseph out of Egypt, and they dug (them) down in Shechem in the portion of the field, which Jacob acquired from the side of the Amorites, the ones dwelling in Shechem, (for) one hundred lambs. And he gave it to Joseph in a portion. (Joshua 24:32, Greek OT)

Noah, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, our fathers … took women out of their brothers, and they were blessed in their children, and their seed will inherit earth. (Tobit 4:12b, BA)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus) comes in company with (His disciples) into a little district being said/called Gethsemane. (Matt 26:36a)

(The woman said:) “If – according to the circumstances – I may touch and/namely if – according to the circumstances – His garments, I will be saved.” And straight/’straight off’ the spring of her blood was dried. (Mark 5:28-29a)

Having gone (the messengers) came into, into a city (א*) of Samaritans as/to make ready for (Jesus). (Luke 9:52b)

(Jesus said to a lawyer:) “Which of these three (the priest, the Levite and the Samatarian) seems you to have become (and become) a neighbour of/to the one having fallen in, into/’into the hands of’ the robbers?” (Luke 10:36)

Having dispatched away (messengers) Joseph called (together) the company, his father Jacob and every/all the kinsfolk. (Acts 7:14a)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

Jacob's well is only 250 ft. from Shechem. (Raymond E. Brown "The Gospel according to John" p 169)

Sichar or Sychar, the ancient Shechem, (lay) within the tribe of Ephraim in an excellent beautiful, although narrow dell of a mountain between the arid and bare mountain Ebal in the north and the fruitful mountain Gerizim in the south. (H.M. Melin "Nya Testamentet" p 155; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Lisa Bysell, Henry Daniel-Rops, Jan Danielson, Per Ericsson, Erik Gustaf Geijer, Gunnar Granberg, Lennart Gustavsson, Alf Henrikson, Edvard Johansson, Bo E. Karlson, Lars-Olof Larsson, Olle Larsson, Harry Lenhammar, Martin Lindström, Karl Lundblad, Henrik Sjögren, Gösta Weiler, Peter Wieselgren, Emile Zola.


My own comments and speculations:

The name Sychar possibly means "intoxication". This place is unknown in the area at issue in Samaria. Perhaps we in the name Sychar has a combination of the first syllable in the Greek Sychem (= Shechem) and the last syllable in the modern Askar, which is near Shechem. Compare My own comments and speculations to John 3:22-24.

The Greek word for “neighbour” is “plêsios”. We could say that Sychar is a neighbour to the little district of Jacob/Josef. Cf. the good Samaritan (Luke 10:36-37).

The connection of Jacob(Israel)/Joseph to Samaria - and not to the Jews in Judea - is furthermore realized, if we bear in mind that the city Samaria was the capital of the north kingdom Israel from 882 B.C. to the destruction of Israel 722 B.C. Concerning the restoration of Ephraim (Sichem was situated within the district of Ephraim's tribe), see My own comments and speculations to John 11:53-54).

The Targum says that the well in Beer was dug by Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

Jacob's spring in Samaria is a type of Jesus' well of living, spiritual water (John 4:10). And Joseph, who in the Gospel of John sometimes is a type of the apostle John, has a near connection to this place.


Greek words:

Iakôb (Jacob) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Tobit 4:12(BA); Matt 1:16; John 4:5-6; Acts 7:14 – Judith 8:26; 1 Macc 1:28; 3:7,45; 5:2; 2 Macc 1:2; Sir 23:12; 24:8,23; 36:10(13); 44:23; 45:5,17; 46:14; 47:22; 48:10; 49:10; Baruch 2:34; 3:37; 4:2; Prayer of Manasseh v 1,8. Matt 1:2,15; 8:11; 22:32; Mark 12:26; Luke 1:33; 3:34; 13:28; 20:37; John 4:12; Acts 3:13; 7:8,12,15,32,46; Rom 9:13; 11:26; Heb 11:9,20-21.

pêgê (spring) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Mark 5:29; John 4:6 – Esther 1:1i(A9); 10:3c(F3); Judith 6:11; 7:3,7,12,17; 12:7; Wisdom of Solomon 11:6; Sir 21:13; Baruch 3:12; The Song of Praise of the Three Men v 55; John 4:14; Jas 3:11; 2 Pet 2:17; Rev 7:17; 8:10; 14:7; 16:4; 21:6.

plêsios (neighbour) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Luke 10:36; John 4:5 – Esther 9:19; Tobit 2:8; Judith 3:9; 7:18; 2 Macc 6:11; Sir 5:12; 6:17; 9:14; 10:6; 16:28; 17:14; 18:13; 19:14,17; 22:23; 25:1,18; 27:18; 28:2,7; 29:1-2,14,20; 31:15,31; 34:22(26); Epistle of Jeremiah v 43; Susanna v 61(Theod); Matt 5:43; 19:19; 22:39; Mark 12:31,33; Luke 10:27,29; Acts 7:27; Rom 13:9-10; 15:2; Gal 5:14; Eph 4:25; Jas 2:8; 4:12.

Sychar (Sychar) John 4:5. Cf. Sychem (Shechem) in Gen 33:19; 48:22; Joshua 24:32 and Acts 7:16.

chôrion (little district) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha, the NT) Matt 26:36; John 4:5 – 2 Macc 11:5; 12:21; Mark 14:32; Acts 1:18-19; 4:34; 5:3,8; 28:7.


Additional studies:

Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

George Ernest Wright "The Samaritans at Shechem"; Harvard Theological Review 55 (1962): 357-368.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-08; 2010-10-15; 2013-10-25; 2014-10-01)

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4:6b-7 So Jesus, bothering (and having bothered) ‘out of’/’in consequence of’ the way of the journey, sat ‘in this way’/so (continually) still on the spring. It (continually) was as a sixth hour. A certain (א,*א) woman ‘out of’/from Samaria comes to ladle out water. Jesus says to her: “Give Me to drink.”

Word for word: 4:6b (16 words in the Greek text) the so Jesus bothering-(and-having-bothered) out-of the way-of-the-journey sat-(continually)-still in-this-way on the spring. (an)-hour was-(continually) as (a)-sixth. 4:7 (15 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus) comes (a)-certain woman out-of the Samaria (to)-ladle-out water. says (to)-her the Jesus: give me (to)-drink.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(Abraham said to his boy/slave:) “You shall go into my earth/land, where I became/’was born’ and into my tribe and you shall take a wife for my son Isaac from there.”... (The slave) brought the camels to rest outside the city to the side of the well of the water. ... (Rebekah) went out ... having the water-pot upon her shoulders. ... Having descended against the spring she fulfilled the water-pot and ascended. The boy/slave ran against (her) into a meeting together with her and spoke: "Let me drink small/’a little’ water out of your water-pot." (Gen 24:4,11a,15b,16b-17, Greek OT)

Jacob went into earth/land of upstickings/east. ... And he beholds, and behold, a well in the plain, but/and there were (continually) three little flocks of sheep being brought to rest upon it. ... Jacob spoke (to the shepherds). "It is still much/high day." ... (On) his still talking (with) them and/also Rachel a daughter of Laban ‘(continually) came’/’was coming’ in company with the sheep of her father. (Gen 29:1b-2a,7a,9, Greek OT)

Having come into the earth/land of Midian Moses sat down upon the well. But to the priest of Midian it/there (continually) were seven daughters to be shepherds to the sheep of their father ... . Having become/come to the side of (the well) they (continually/repeatedly) ladled out (water) (Ex 2:15b-16a, Greek OT)

(… Israel said to Moses:) ”Give us water, in order that we may to drink.” ... (The Lord said to Moses:) “I stand (and have stood) before you there upon the rock.” (Ex 17:2a,6a, Greek OT)

(David said: “The Lord) will drink out of a torrent in/by the way. Because of this He will heighten (His) head.” (Ps 110:7, Greek OT)

(The sons of Israel) (continually) had not water (enough) to drink … because they (continually) gave them to drink in a measure. (Judith 7:21b, cf. also Judith 7:22)

(Solomon said to the Lord:) “Dispatch (the wisdom) out, out of holy heavens and send her from the throne of Your glory, in order that being together (with me) by the side of me, she may bother, and I may gain knowledge of what is well-pleasing by the side of You.” (Wisdom of Solomon 9:10)

(Solomon said to the Lord:) ”Your people indeed might/would be tried (during) an incredible way of journey.” (Wisdom of Solomon 19:5a)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said to His disciples:) “The one who – according to the circumstances – may give to one of these small ones (following Me) only a cup of cold (water) to drink, into/’for the purpose of’ a name of a disciple, amen, I say to you, he may not/certainly not perish/lose his wage.” (Matt 10:42)

(Jesus said to the crowds:) "’According to day’/’day after day’ I (continually/repeatedly) sat still in the sanctuary teaching ..." (Matt 26:55b)

From a sixth hour it became darkness * (א*) till a ninth hour. (Matt 27:45)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) “The one who – according to the circumstances – may give you a cup of water to drink in My (א*) name, because you are of Christ, amen I say to you that/: 'He may not/certainly not perish/lose his wage.'” (Mark 9:41)

The Pharisees and * (א,*א) the scribes (continually) grumbled towards (Jesus') disciples, saying: "Because of what do you eat and drink in company with the toll collectors and missers (of the mark of God)?" (Luke 5:30)

A certain Samaritan, going on the way, came ‘according to’/downwards (the half dead man), and having beheld (him), he was moved in his inward parts. (Luke 10:33)

Having taken nourishment/food (Saul) was stable/strong in (himself). (Acts 9:19a)

Going on their (P74, א,* א, A; their = the men of Cornelius) way and drawing near the city Peter ascended against/on the building around a sixth hour to pray. (Acts 10:9b)

(Paul said to the elders in Ephesos:) “In this way you must bothering take ‘in stead’/’part with’ the ones being weak, to both/also recollect the sayings of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself spoke: 'It is happy to give rather than to take.'” (Acts 20:35b)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

Since the Jews often likened the Torah to a well or a spring, they were able to see a transferred meaning in "draw", namely "acquire knowledge, learn". (Birger Olsson "Structure and Meaning in the Fourth Gospel" p 129)

(Jacob) did all things for the sake of the younger (sister), she who had the handsome eyes, Rachel, who prefigured the Church, for which Christ endured patiently. (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Father Vol I, p 493)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Liselotte J. Andersson, Fredrik Brosché, Peter Carelli, Charles Dickens, Fjodor Dostojevskij, Johannes Gossner, Claes-Göran Holmberg, Carl Vilhelm Jakobowsky, Erik Johannesson, Eyvind Johnson, Lars-Olof Larsson, Olle Larsson, Anna Maria Lenngren, Verner Ohlin, Sigrid Rosell, Gunnar E. Sandgren, Enar Skillius, August Strindberg, A.M. Strinnholm, Bengt Taranger, Thecla Wrangel.


My own comments and speculations:

As the boy/slave of the father Abraham asked a woman for water, so also the Son of the Father does. And as the halfdead man got help from a certain Samaritan, so also the wearied Jesus expects help from a certain Samaritan.

Isaac, Jacob and Moses got wifes in connection with a journey and a visit at a well. Now also Jesus will get a bride in a similar way.

The Greek word for “way of journey” only occurs here in the Gospels. This word is used in Wisdom of Solomon (18:3; 19:5) about Israel's “way of journey” in the wilderness.

Concerning “as/about the sixth hour”, see My own comments and speculations to John 4:16-18.

Paul said to the believers in Philippi: “’Beginning under’/being in a shape of God, (Jesus Christ) ‘was not in command’/’did not state’ to be equal (with) God (as) a rapture, however/but emptied Himself, having taken a shape of a slave, having become in ‘a likeness of’/’one like’ men." (Phil 2:6-7a)


Greek words:

(h)ektos (sixth) (in the NT + one example in th Apocrypha) Matt 27:45; John 4:6; Acts 10:9 – 2 Macc 7:18; Matt 20:5; Mark 15:33; Luke 1:26,36; 23:44; John 19:14; Rev 6:12; 9:13-14; 16:12; 21:20.

kathezomai (sit still) (in the NT) Matt 26:55; John 4:6 – Luke 2:46; John 6:3(P66,א,*א); John 11:20; 20:12; Acts 6:15; 20:9.

kopiaô (bother) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Wisdom of Solomon 9:10; John 4:6; Acts 20:35 – 1 Macc 10:81; Sir 6:19; 16:27; 24:34; 31:3-4; 33:18; 43:30; 51:27; Matt 6:28; 11:28; Luke 5:5; 12:27; John 4:38; Rom 16:6,12; 1 Cor 4:12; 15:10; 16:16; Gal 4:11; Eph 4:28; Phil 2:16; Col 1:29; 1 Thess 5:12; 1 Tim 4:10; 5:17; 2 Tim 2:6; Rev 2:3.

(h)odoiporia (way of journey) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Wisdom of Solomon 19:5; John 4:6 – 1 Macc 6:41; Wisdom of Solomon 13:18; 18:3; 2 Cor 11:26. (Cf. “hodoiporeô-go on a way” in Acts 10:9).

pinô (drink) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Judith 7:21; Sir 26:12; Luke 5:30; John 4:7 – Esther 1:7; 4:16,17x(C28); Tobit 7:10-11,14; 8:20; Judith 12:11,13,17-20; 1 Macc 11:58; 2 Macc 15:39; Sir 9:10; 24:21; 31:27,29; Bel and the Dragon v 6-7(Theod),24; Matt 6:25,31; 11:18-19; 20:22-23; 24:38,49; 26:27,29,42; 27:34; Mark 10:38-39; 14:23,25; Luke 1:15; 5:33,39; 7:33-34; 10:7; 12:19,29,45; 13:26; 17:8,27-28; 22:18,30; John 4:9,12-14; 6:53-54,56; 7:37; 18:11. Acts 9:9; 23:12,21; Rom 14:21; 1 Cor 9:4; 10:4,7,21,31; 11:22,25-29; 15:32; Heb 6:7; Rev 14:10; 16:6.


Additional studies:

Gen 24:13-14; Sir 26:12; Matt 10:5; Mark 6:31; Luke 9:52-56; 10:30-37; John 8:48.


Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

J. Duncan M. Derrett "The Samatarian Woman's Purity (Jn. 4:4-42)"; The Evangelical Quarterly 60.4 (Oct.-Dec. 1988): 291-298.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-09; 2010-10-18; 2013-10-27; 2014-10-01)

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4:8 For His disciples had gone (and went) away into/to the city, in order that they might/would buy nourishments/food.

Word for word (11 words in the Greek text): the for disciples his had-gone-(and-went)-away into the city in-order-to norishments/food they-might-buy.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(Moses) dispatched away a delegation out of the desolate (district) of Kedemoth towards Sihon, the king of (the) Heshbonites, (with) peaceful sayings, saying: "I will come to the side of through your earth/land. ... You will give me back food (for) silvermetal, and I will eat, and you will give me back water (for) silvermetal, and I will drink." (Deut 2:26-27a,28a, Greek OT)

The famine (was) powerful/'very great' in Samaria (in the time of the prophet Elijah). (1 Kings 18:2b, Greek OT)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said to the twelve:) “You may not go away into a way of/to (the) nations and you may not come into, into a city of Samaritans, but go rather towards the sheep being (and having been) perished of a house of Israel.” … You may not acquire gold but/and not silver but/and not copper into your girdles, … for the worker (is) worthy of his nourishment/food.” (Matt 10:5b-6,9,10b)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "Give (the crowd) you/yourselves to eat!" And they says to Him: "Having gone may we buy breads/bread ... ?” (Mark 6:37b)

And (Jesus) dispatched away messengers before His face. Having gone they came into, into a city (א*) of Samaritans as/to make ready for (Jesus). (Luke 9:52b)

Having taken nourishment/food (Saul) was stable/strong in (himself). (Acts 9:19a)

(Barnabas and Paul said to the crowds:) “And yet (God) did not let Himself be without witness (in) doing good, giving rains to you from heaven and seasonable fruit-bearing times, fulfilling your hearts with nourishment and cheerfulness.” (Acts 14:17)


Exegetes, evangelists and others: Examples of quoted authors in the Swedish version: Gunnar Carlsson, Hjalmar Fernström, Mats Fritzell, Lennart Gustavsson, S.E. Hagberg, Sive Hallgren, Alf Henrikson, Barbro Jern, Inge Kvarnström, Johanna Svensdotter, Gustaf Wikner.


My own comments and speculations:

In a restoration perspective we can see how in the time of the prophet Eliah the famine in Samaria is contrasted by the food to buy in the Samarian city.


Greek words:

agorazô (buy) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Mark 6:37; John 4:8 – 1 Macc 12:36; 13:49; Sir 20:12; 37:11; Baruch 1:10; Epistle of Jeremiah v 24; Matt 13:44,46; 14:15; 21:12; 25:9-10; 27:7; Mark 6:36; 11:15; 15:46; 16:1; Luke 9:13; 14:18-19; 17:28; 19:45; 22:36; John 6:5; 13:29; 1 Cor 6:20; 7:23,30; 2 Pet 2:1; Rev 3:18; 5:9; 13:17; 14:3-4; 18:11.

trofê (nourishment) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 10:10; John 4:8; Acts 9:19; 14:17 – Judith 12:9; 1 Macc 1:35; 6:57; 13:21; Wisdom of Solomon 13:12; 16:3,20; 19:21; Sir 41:1; Matt 3:4; 6:25; 24:45; Luke 12:23; Acts 2:46; 9:19; 27:33-34,36,38; Heb 5:12,14; Jas 2:15.


Additional studies: John 4:31.

Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

J. Duncan M. Derrett "The Samatarian Woman's Purity (Jn. 4:4-42)"; The Evangelical Quarterly 60.4 (Oct.-Dec. 1988): 291-298.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-09; 2010-10-19; 2013-10-28)

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4:9-10a The woman, the Samaritan woman, * (א*) says to Him: “How (is it that) You, being a Jew, demand to drink from the side of me, being a woman, a Samaritan woman?” * (א*). Jesus answered and spoke to her: “If you knew the benefit of God and who the One is saying to you: ‘Give me to drink’, you had – according to the circumstances - demanded/asked Him.”

Word for word: 4:9 (17 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) says (to)-him the woman the Samaritan-woman: how you (a)-Jew being from-the-side-of me (to)-drink (you)-demand (a)-woman (a)-Samaritan-woman being: 4:10a (24 words in the Greek text) answered Jesus and spoke (to)-her: if (you)-'knew-(and-had-known)'/knew the benefit (of)-the (of)-god and who is the-(one) saying (to)-you: give me (to)-drink, you according-to-the-circumstances demanded him


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(On) (Jacob's) still talking (with the shepherds) and/also Rachel a daughter of Laban ‘(continually) came’/’was coming’ in company with the sheep of her father. ... (And) having come to/forward Jacob rolled away the stone from the mouth of the well and gave the sheep of Laban, his mother's brother, to drink. (Gen 29:9a,10b, Greek OT)

(Moses) delivered/helped (the seven daughters) and ladled out to them and gave their sheep to drink. ... (The daughter who became Moses' woman) brought forth a son, and (Moses) 'named on his name'/'gave him the name' Gershom, saying that/: “I am an outsider in an alien earth/land.” (Ex 2:17b,22, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Moses:) “Lead/bring the people together, and I will give them water to drink.” … And from well into Manthana/Mattanah. (Num 21:16b,18b, Greek OT)

The leaders of the lineages of Israel spoke towards (the enemies in Samaria): "(There is) not (anything) ‘to us and to’/’between us and’ you (on account of) the thing to build a house to our God, because we ourselves ... will build a house to the Lord, our God ... ." (Ezra 4:3b, Greek OT)

They will talk (with Ephraim/Samaria) through disregard of lips, through ‘the other’/another tongue, saying ... : "This is quiet for the one being hungry." (Is 28:11-12a, Greek OT)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) "In/with two nations my soul was indignant, and the third is not a nation: The ones being seated in/on a mountain of Samaria and Philistines and the foolish people dwelling in Shechem." (Sir 50:25-26)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said to the twelve:) “You took as a benefit, as a benefit give.” (Matt 10:8b)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "The one receiving you receives Me, and the one receiving Me receives the One having dispatched Me away. ... The one who – according to the circumstances – may give to one of these small ones (following Me) only a cup of cold (water) to drink, into/’for the purpose of’ a name of a disciple, amen, I say to you, he may not/certainly not perish/lose his wage.” (Matt 10:40,42)

(Jesus said:) "Come here towards Me, all being bothered and being (and having been) burdened, and I will bring you to rest." (Matt 11:28)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "If so you being (א,* א) evil know to give good gifts to your children, how much will the Father * (P75,א,*א) out of a heaven rather give holy spirit to the ones demanding/asking Him?" (Luke 11:13)

(Peter said to the Jews:) “You will take the benefit of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38b)

Peter spoke towards (Simon): “Oh, that your silvermetal may be/come into a perdition together with you, because you have adopted as a law (that you could) acquire the benefit of God through/with matters/money.” (Acts 8:20)

Peter uttered towards (the ones having come together in the habitation of Cornelius): “You have insight in as/’in what way’ it is illicit for a Jewish male to attach himself to or come to (anyone) of another tribe. And to me God has shown to not say/call anyone/any man common (people) or unclean. (Acts 10:28)

(Paul said to the elders in Ephesos:) “In this way you must bothering take ‘in stead’/’part with’ the ones being weak, to both/also recollect the sayings of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself spoke: 'It is happy to give rather than to take.'” (Acts 20:35b)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

For in this way God welcomed the adornment/’adorned world’, so that He gave the Son, the only descendant, in order that 'every the'/everyone believing into Him may not perish however/but have agelong life. (John 3:16)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

When in connection with Jesus' talk with the Samaritan woman it is said "the Jews have no intercourse with the Samaritans", John 4:9, it is fundamentally the community of meal which is meant and the shocking thing is that Jesus demands to drink out of a pot of a Samaritan woman. (Lars Hartman "Liknelser om det förlorade" p 223 in comment to Luke 15:1-2; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Within Judaism the 'gift of God' par excellence is the Torah. (C.K. Barrett "The Gospel according to St John" p 233)

The quarrel between the Jews and the Samaritans was centuries old. Back in the eight century B.C. the Assyrians conquered the Northern Kingdom whose capital was Samaria. As conquerors did in those days, they transported the greater part o the population and settled strangers in the land. ... When the people of the Southern Kingdom (in the fifth century B.C.) returned (from the captivity in Babylon) and set to build (Jerusalem), these people round Samaria offered their help. It was contemptuously refused because they were no longer pure Jews. From that day onwards there was an unhealed breach and a bitter hatred between Jews and Samaritans. (William Barclay “The Acts of the Apostles” p 65 commenting Acts 8:5-13)

In the beginning did God form Adam, not as if He stood in need of man, but that He might have (some one) upon whom to confer His benefits. (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 478)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Ann-Charlotte Alverfors, Karl-Erik Bergh, UllaBritt Berglund, Oloph Bexell, Dag Hammarskjöld, Ellen Key, Edvin Larsson, Carl Henrik Martling, August Strindberg.


My own comments and speculations:

The name Beer means "well", while Mattanah means "gift". As the water of the well in the wilderness was associated with a gift, Jesus now associates the water of the spring in Sychar with a gift.

For the Samaritan woman Jesus is a Jew and a male rather than the Man. Cf. My own comments and speculations to John 4:27-30.

Concerning the expression “demanded/asked Him”, cf. My own comments and speculations to John 4:16-18.


Paul said: "'Joybringing (grace)'/thanks to God on/’for the sake of’ His indescribable benefit!" (2 Cor 9:15)

Paul said: "(It is not possible to be) Jew (or) Greek ... male and female, for you are all of you * (א*) in Christ Jesus." (Gal 3:28b)

Paul said to the believers in Ephesos: "(With) joybringing (grace) you are (and have been) saved through faith; and this is not out/’on the basis’ of you, (it is) the gift of God." (Eph 2:8)

This is the ‘plain language’/confidence, which we have towards/’in regard to’ Him, that – if according to the circumstances – we may demand anything according to His will, He hears us. (1 John 5:14)


Greek words:

aiteô (demand) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Luke 11:13; John 4:9-10; 1 John 5:14 – Esther 8:12n(E13); Tobit 4:2,19(BA); 1 Macc 15:35; Wisdom of Solomon 13:19; 19:11; The Prayer of Manasseh v 13. Matt 5:42; 6:8; 7:7-11; 14:7; 18:19; 20:20,22; 21:22; 27:20,58; Mark 6:22-25; 10:38; 11:24; 15:8,43; Luke 1:63; 6:30; 11:9-12; 12:48; 23:23,25,52; John 11:22; 14:13-14; 15:7,16; 16:23-24,26. Acts 3:2,14; 7:46; 9:2; 12:20; 13:21,28; 16:29; 25:3,15; 1 Cor 1:22; Eph 3:13,20; Col 1:9; Jas 1:5-6; 4:2-3; 1 Pet 3:15; 1 John 3:22; 5:14-16.

dôrea (benefit) (in the NT + examples in the OT) John 4:10; Acts 2:38; 8:20; 2 Cor 9:15 – 2 Macc 4:30; Wisdom of Solomon 7:14; 16:25; Acts 10:45; 11:17; Rom 5:15,17; Eph 3:7; 4:7; Heb 6:4.

Samaritis (Samaritan woman) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) John 4:9 – 1 Macc 10:30; 11:28


Additional studies:

2 Kings 17:24; Tobit 4:12(BA); Matt 10:5; Mark 9:41; Luke 9:52-56; 10:30-37; 17:16; John 4:29; 8:48; 17:2.


Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

J. Duncan M. Derrett "The Samatarian Woman's Purity (Jn. 4:4-42)"; The Evangelical Quarterly 60.4 (Oct.-Dec. 1988): 291-298.

W. Harold Mare "Acts 7: Jewish or Samaritan in Character?"; Westminster Theological Journal 34.1 (1971): 1-21.

Winsome Munro "The Pharisee and the Samaritan in John. Polar or Parallell?"; Se Catholic Biblical Quarterly 57.4 (1995): 710-728.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-09; 2010-10-24; 2013-10-29; 2014-10-01)

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4:10b-12 … and He had – according to the circumstances – given you living water. That one (א*) says to Him: “Lord, and/but You have not a ladle, and the well is deep. From where have You * (א,* א) the living water? You are not greater (than) our father Jacob, are You, (he) who gave us the well and drank out of it himself (as) and/both his sons and his livestocks?”

Word for word: 4:10b (6 words in the Greek text) and he-gave according-to-the-circumstances you water living 4:11 (18 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) says (to)-him that-(one): lord, and-not ladle (you)-have and the well is deep; from-where have-(you) the water the living? 4:12 (26 words in the Greek text) not you greater are (than)-the father our Jacob, who gave us the well and he out-of it drank and the sons his and the livestocks his?


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

The messenger of the Lord spoke (to the woman who to Abram would bear a son “according to the flesh”): “Hagar … from where do you come and where do you go?” (Gen 16:8a, Greek OT)

Having gone away (from Abraham Hagar) ‘was lead’/went astray to the desolate (district) ... And God opened her eyes, and she beheld a well of living water. (Gen 21:14b,19a, Greek OT)

Isaac dug again the wells of the water which the boys of his father Abraham had dug, and the Philistines had fenced in after the thing 'to die Abraham'/'that Abrahm died'. And he gave them names, names according to the names which his father had given names. ... The boys of Isaac dug in the ravine ... and found there a well of living water. (Gen 26:18-19, Greek OT)

(The boys of Isaac said about the well they had dug:) “We did not find water.” (Gen 26:32b, Greek OT)

Having taken (Dinah, Jacob's daughter) (Sychem) ‘fell asleep’/’went to bed’ in company with her and humbled her. … (And Simeon and Levi, two of Jacob's sons) killed Sychem in/with 'a mouth'/'an edge' of a dagger. (Gen 34:2b,26a, Greek OT)

The priest shall carry (the burnt offering) to opposite the Lord and ‘propitiate out’/propitiate (the woman who has brought forth a child) and make her clean from the spring of her blood. (Lev 12:7a, Greek OT)

A male, who – according to the circumstances – may ‘fall asleep’/’go to bed’ in company with a woman, ‘being set aside’/’having her menstruation’ and may reveal/uncover her indecency/nakedness, he has revealed/uncovered her spring. (Lev 20:18a, Greek OT)

(In the desolate district at a well) Israel sang this song on account of the well: "’Begin/’spring up’ out of it, (O), well. Leaders dug it! Kings of nations hewed it out." (Num 21:17-18a, Greek OT)

(Zophar said to Job: “The Lord reaches) deeper than the things in Hades. ...” (Job 11:8b, Greek OT)

(Solomon said to his son:) “Drink waters … from your spring of wells. … Be cheerful in company together with the woman out of your youth.” (Prov 5:15b,18b, Greek OT)

(Solomon said:) "A law of a wise (one is) a spring of life." (Prov 13:14a, Greek OT)

(Solomon said to his bride: "You are) a spring of gardens, a well of living water." (Song of Solomon 4:15a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said:) "My people have made/done two evils things. They have entirely left Me in (a place), a spring of living waters and for themselves dug dens, which have been (and are) crushed/undone, (dens) which will not be able to ‘hold together’/contain water." (Jer 2:13, Greek OT)

(The leaders said to Holophernes: “Take power over) the spring of the water, which goes out, out of the root/foot of the mountain, for the reason that from where all the ones dwelling in Baityloua draw water.” (Judith 7:12b-13a)

(Bachides let kill men) into the great well. (1 Macc 7:19b)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said: “Wisdom) will give (the one fearing the Lord) water of wisdom to drink.” (Sir 15:3b)

(Wisdom said:) “I have walked about in a depth of abysses.” (Sir 24:5b)


The Latter Revelation:

‘Having answered’/’(Jesus) answered’ and spoke (to the slanderer): "It is (and has been) written: ‘The man shall not live on/by bread alone/only however/but on/by every word going out through (the) mouth of God.’” (Matt 4:4)

(Jesus said to the scribes and Pharisees:) "Behold, (something) more (than) Jonah (is) here. ... Behold, (something) more (than) Solomon (is) here." (Matt 12:41b,42b)

(Jesus) taught (the people in Nazaret) in their synagogue, so that they were overwhelmed and said: “From where (are) this wisdom and the abilities to this One? … From where (did) so this One (get) all these things?” (Matt 13:54b,56b)

(Jesus said to the priest leaders and the elders of the people:) “From where was (continually) the baptism of John, out of heaven or out of men?” … They answered (that they did) not know from where. (Matt 21:25a; Luke 20:7)

(The woman said:) “If – according to the circumstances – I may touch and/namely if – according to the circumstances – His garments, I will be saved.” And straight/’straight off’ the spring of her blood was dried. (Mark 5:28-29a)

(Jesus said to the lawyers and Pharisees:) ”Who of you, (if) an ass (א,*א) or a cattle/’cow or an ox’ will fall into a well, will he not straightaway pull him up in/on a sabbath day?” (Luke 14:5b)

(Stephen said to the Israelites: “On the mountain Sinai Moses) received living little sayings to give to you (P74, א,* א, B).” (Acts 7:38b)

(Barnabas and Paul said to the men in Lystra: “We bring) a good little message to turn yourselves next to (God) from these vain things against/to a living God ...” (Acts 14:15b)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

The threebedleader had tasted the water having become (and becoming) wine, and he did not know from where it is/was – but the servants, the ones having ladled (and ladling) out the water, knew. (John 2:9)

(Jesus) (so comes into/to a city of/in Samaria) being said/called Sychar, ‘neighbour of’/’hard by’ the little district, which Jacob gave to his son Joseph. But it/there (continually) was the spring of Jacob. (John 4:5-6a)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 - about 1500

The woman had not yet understood, in stead she misunderstands. For her Jesus is a usual male person. How would he get hold of living water, that is refreshing, running water, but not have anything to take it up with? (LarsOlov Eriksson "För att ni skall tro. Johannesevangeliet" p 84; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Once there was a well full of clear, cold water, but no one could get the water out of it. Finally someone tied pieces of rope and cord and twine and thread together until the bucket could reach the water and bring it up. Just so, Judah put together words like rope, cord, twine, and thread until they reached the depths of Joseph's heart and drew forth the refreshment of compassion (cf. Gen 45:1-15). (Michael E. Williams “Genesis” p 191; Genesis Rabbah 93.4)

(In the rabbinic literature 'living water') stands for the Holy Spirit, more often for Torah. The same uses of the image are found at Qumran. At CD 6.4 the well (Num 21:18) is the Torah. (C.K. Barrett "The Gospel according to St John" p 233)

"That well is the only one i Jerusalem, which always has good water", (Gertrud) said. "And it is due to the fact that it has its spring in the Paradise." . . . Miss Young told that a poor water bearer once during a severe summer drought went into the old mosque to get water. He fixed the bucket to the hook on the rope hanging over the well, and hoist it down. But when the bucket reached the water surface, it fell off the hook and was lying on the bottom of the well. . . . He at once hurried . . . to gather some other water bearers and let them hoist him down in the dark well. . . . The deeper he came, the more astonished he was, for a mellow light flew towards him down from the bottom of the well. And when he at last was on firm ground, the water was flown away, and in its place a lovely garden extended down there. The most curious thing was that it seemed as if all down there were sleeping. . . . Before he let himself be hoisted up to the ground surface, he went up to the biggest and the most lovely tree being in the garden and broke a twig, which he brought. . . . In the same moment it came up in the air and the light, it began to live. The leaves came out, they lost their grey colour and were brightly shining green. And when the water bearer and his friends saw this, they understood that he had been down in the garden of the Paradise, which lies slumbering under Jerusalem, till it with renewed life and splendour will rise to the surface of the ground on the Day of Judgment." (Selma Lagerlöf "Jerusalem II" p 333-335; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

(Klemens) hurried to the assembly-hall and into Eufemios' room, took the bunch of keys and the jar, which he found in there, filled it with water and hurried back to the prison. . . . Klemens heard how (the prisoner Teodoros) drank in long, deep draughts. "Glorious gift of God! I now have a feeling what the water of life is for the spirit." (Viktor Rydberg "Den siste atenaren I" p 215-216; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

(Sychar) was the place where Levi and Simeon, being angry because of Dinah, wrought that cruel slaughter. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:107)

The Father is indeed above all, and He is the Head of Christ; but the Word is through all things, and is Himself the Head of the Church; while the Spirit is in us all, and He is the living water, which the Lord grants to those who rightly believe in Him, and love Him, and who know that “there is one Father, who is above all, and through all, and in us all.” (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 546)

(The well of Jacob) must have gone down about 150 feet. (Alfred Edersheim "The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah Part I" p 404)

The Targum says that the well in Beer was dug by Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Stig Abrahamsson, Ewert Amnefors, Dick Harrison, Eric Hertz, Gunnar Hillerdal, Eskil Jonsson, Lars-Olof Larsson, Olle Larsson, Sven Lidman, Astrid Lindgren, Elis Malmeström, Vilhelm Moberg, Efraim Palmqvist, Efraim Rang, Viktor Rydberg, Ester Svensson, P. Waldenström, Anna Ölander.


My own comments and speculations:

Sychem humbled Jacob's daughter Dinah by drinking water in her spring. Now Jacob's daughter (cf. “our father Jacob”) is restored by being offered to drink living water in the spring of Sychar/Sychem. And the killed Sychem is restored by finding his Saviour (John 4:42).


Greek words:

antlêma (ladle) John 4:11.

bathys (deep) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) John 4:11 – Wisdom of Solomon 16:11; Sir 22:9; Luke 24:1; Acts 20:9; Rev 2:24.

zaô (live) (in the Synoptics, John, the Acts, 1-3 John, Rev + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 4:4; John 4:10-11; Acts 7:38; 14:15 – Ester 4:17h(C10); 6:13; 8:12q(E16); Tobit 3:6,15; 5:3(BA),10,20; 7:5; 8:12,14; 10:4,12; 12:6; 13:2,4; 14:2,10; Judith 2:12; 11:3,7; 12:4,18; 13:16; 1 Macc 1:6; 2:33; 4:35; 8:7; 14:2; 2 Macc 3:31,33,35; 6:20,25-26; 7:9,33; 9:9; 10:36; 15:4; Wisdom of Solomon 1:13; 4:10; 5:15; 14:28; 15:17; 18:12,23; Sir 7:33; 16:30; 17:27-28; 18:1; 25:7; 33:21; 34:13(14); 37:26; 39:9; 42:23; 44:14; 48:11; Baruch 1:12; Bel and the Dragon 5-6(Theod),24. Matt 9:18; 16:16; 22:32; 26:63; 27:63; Mark 5:23; 12:27; Luke 2:36; 4:4; 10:28; 15:13,32; 20:38; 24:5,23; John 4:50,51,53; 5:25; 6:51,57-58; 7:38; 11:25-26; 14:19. Acts 1:3; 9:41; 10:42; 17:28; 20:12; 22:22; 25:19,24; 26:5; 28:4; 1 John 4:9; Rev 1:18; 2:8; 3:1; 4:9-10; 7:2; 10:6; 13:14; 15:7; 16:3(P47,א,*א); Rev 19:20; 20:4.

thremma (livestock) John 4:12.

frear (well) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) 1 Macc 7:19; Luke 14:5; John 4:11-12 – 2 Macc 1:19; Rev 9:1-2.


Additional studies:

Ps 23:2; 36:8(9); Is 12:3; Ezek 47:9; Zech 14:8; Mark 6:2; John 3:5,16; 6:5-6,27,34-35; 7:37; 8:53; 19:34; 1 Cor 10:4; Heb 6:4; Rev 7:13; 9:1; 16:4; 21:6; 22:1,17.


Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

J. Duncan M. Derrett "The Samatarian Woman's Purity (Jn. 4:4-42)"; The Evangelical Quarterly 60.4 (Oct.-Dec. 1988): 291-298.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-09; 2010-10-26; 2013-11-01; 2014-10-01)

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4:13-15 Jesus answered and spoke to her: "'Every the'/everyone drinking out of this water will thirst again, but the one drinking (א*) out of the water, which I will give him, will not/certainly not thirst into the (coming) age, however/but the water, which I will give him, will in him become a spring of water, springing/’welling up’ into an agelong life." The woman says towards Him: “Lord, give me this water, in order that I may not thirst but/and not may come through hitherward to ladle out."

Word for word: 4:13 (14 words in the Greek text) answered Jesus and spoke (to)-her: 'every the'/everyone drinking out-of the water this will thirst again 4:14 (32 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) the-(one) but drinking out-of the water '(of)-which'/which i/I will-give him, not not will-thirst into the age, however the water which i/I will-give him will-become in him (a)-spring (of)-water springing into life agelong 4:15 (18 words in the Greek text) says towards him the woman: lord, give me this the water, in-order-that not (i/I)-may-thirst but/and-not may-come-through hitherward (to)-ladle-out.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

A spring ascended out of the earth and gave ‘every the’/’the whole’ face of the earth to drink. And God formed the man of gravel from the earth and puffed in, into his face, a breath of life. And the man became into a living soul. (Gen 2:6-7, Greek OT)

A spirit of the Lord sprang/’welled forth’ against (Samson). (Judges 14:6a, Greek OT, B).

A spirit of God sprang/’welled forth’ against (Saul) ... (1 Sam 10:10b, Greek OT)

A Spirit of the Lord sprang/’welled forth’ against, against David ... (1 Sam 16:13b, Greek OT)

(David said to the Lord:) “You will give (the sons of men) to drink the torrent of Your delicacy. By the side of You (is) a spring of life.” (Ps 36:8b-9a or 36:9b-10a, Greek OT)

(Solomon said to his bride: "You are) a spring of gardens, a well of living water." (Song of Solomon 4:15a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said: "My people) will not be hungry, nor (it) will thirst." (Is 49:10a, Greek OT)

(Jeremiah said to the Lord:) "All the ones having left You entirely, put down a shame to (them), (and) standing (and having stood) aloof (from them) write (them) upon the earth, because they entirely left the Lord, a spring of life, in (a place)." (Jer 17:13b, Greek OT)

(The Lord said about His people:) "Giving I shall give My laws into their mind ..." (Jer 31:33b, Greek OT)

(Bachides let kill men) into the great well. (1 Macc 7:19b)

(Solomon said to the Lord:) “In stead of a spring of an inexhaustible river having been troubled/soiled by blood, soiled murderblood … You gave (Your people) profused water, which they had not hoped for, having through the thirst then/'at that time' shown how you chastised the hostile ones.".” (Wisdom of Solomon 11:6,7b-8)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “Knowledge of a wise one (is) as an inundation (which) is made full, and his counsel as a spring of life. ” (Sir 21:13)

(The wisdom said:) "The ones eating me will still be hungry, and the ones drinking me will still thirst." (Sir 24:21)

(Baruch said to Israel:) “You entirely left the spring of the wisdom in (a place).” (Baruch 3:12)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "Happy the ones being hungry and thirsting (for) the righteousness, because they themselves will be fed." (Matt 5:6)

(Jesus said to the scribes and the Pharisees:) “When – according to the circumstances – the unclean spirit may come out from the man, it 'comes through'/passes through waterless places, seeking rest, and does not find." (Matt 12:43)

Having beheld one fig tree (alone) upon the way, (Jesus) came against it and did not find anything in it, ‘if not’/except leaves only, and He says to it: “Oh that (א,* א) it may not become fruit out of you any longer into the (coming) age.” And immediately the fig tree was dried. (Matt 21:19)

(Mary said: “The Lord) has taken ‘in stead’/’part with’ Israel ... entirely as He talked towards our fathers, to Abraham and his seed into the (coming) age.”(Luke 1:54-55)

(Jesus said:) “John the Baptist comes (and has come) not eating bread but/and (א,*א) not drinking wine.” (Luke 7:33a)

A certain Samaritan, going on the way, came ‘according to’/downwards (the half dead man), and having beheld (him), he was moved in his inward parts. (Luke 10:33)

(Jesus said to the two disciples:) "Have you something consumable hitherward?" (Luke 24:41b)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

Entirely as Moses heightened the serpent in the desolate (district), in this way must the Son of the Man be heightened, in order that 'every the'/everyone believing into (P63, א,* א, A) Him may have agelong life. (John 3:14-15)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

Before this offer many persons react as the woman. They do not understand it. Can they have any practical use for Christianity for their own part, they perhaps will be interested. (Bo Giertz "Evangelium enligt Johannes" p 54; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

He who has tasted Wisdom will desire ever more Wisdom. Jesus makes an even higher claim than the divine Wisdom. Those who accept him and his gifts are thereafter permanently supplied, and their needs are inwardly met. (C.K. Barrett "The Gospel according to St John" p 234)

(The Jews) divided all time into two ages. There was The Present Age which was utterly evil and doomed to destruction; there was The Age to Come which would be the golden age of God. Between the two there was to be The Day of the Lord which was to be the terrible birth pangs of the new age. (William Barclay “The Acts of the Apostles” p 25)

"I am surprised", one of the strangers said, "that the three wise men do not make anything for the well, which showed them the star. Will they wholly forget such a kind deed?" "Should not this well exist permanently", the other stranger said, "to remind men, that happiness being lost on the heights of pride lets itself be found again in the depth of humility?" "Are the deceased ones inferior the living ones?" the third one said. "Does thankfulness die with the ones living in the Paradise?" But when they said this, drought sprang to its feet with a scream. She had recognized the strangers, she understood who the travellers were. And she fled away as a raging one in order to have not to see how the three wise men summoned their servants and led their camels - all loaded with water sacks - up to the well and filled the miserable, dying away well with water, which they had taken from the Paradise. (Selma Lagerlöf "De vise männens brunn" p 24; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

"It seems to me", (Adolf) thoughtfully said, "as if the minds of men quickly have been infected by an invisible poison and the whole world has been changed to a lunatic asylum. This probably is a guess without cause, but there are in our age many stinking pools, out of which such a poison can develope itself." "I think me understand, what you mean, my Lord", Ingrid said. "Oh, one only needs to read something in the holy gospels and compare these high examples with ourselves to see, how corrupted, how little Christian we are. . . . I, an old man, I still should be an example for the young ones with trust in the all-bountiful God and in a while of trouble, when the soul grows faint, not forget the spring of the water of eternal life." (Viktor Rydberg "Fribytaren på Östersjön I" p 84; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

(Alms) is as a limpid and pure stream in a paradise. ... Beside this fountain (is) ... friendship with God. This is the fountain by which the plant of love is nourished. ... It makes its branches to lift themselves on high. This fountain is better than that in Paradise (Gen. ii. 10); a fountain, not dividing into four heads, but reach in unto Heaven itself: this gives birth to that river “which springeth up into eternal life” (John iv. 14). ... Let no unfruitful tree stand beside it, that it may not waste its spray. ... Better to possess such a fountain, than to have fountains running with gold. Better than all gold-bearing soil is the soul which bears this gold. For it advances us, not into these earthly palaces, but into those above. The gold becomes an ornament to the Church of God. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XI:147-148)

Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Eric S. Alexandersson, Carl Jonas Love Almqvist, UllaBritt Berglund, Bo Bergman, Elisabeth Beskow, Carl Boberg, Nils Bolander, Karin Boye, Rachel Carson, Runar Eldebo, Lars Englund, Björne Erixon, Melker Fredbrant, Bo Frid, Anton Fridrichsen, Johannes Gossner, Carl Grimberg, Odd Hagen, Raymond Hammer, Dick Harrison, Alf Henrikson, Ragnar Hoppe, Bengt Häger, Majken Johansson, Viktor Johansson, Eyvind Johnson, Gunlög Järhult, Aleksis Kivi, C.S. Lewis, Gottfrid Lidin, Claes Lindskog, Per Lundberg, Martin Luther, Efraim Palmqvist, Bengt-Arne Person, Viktor Rydberg, Bo Setterlind, Tomas Sjödin, Jesper Svartvik, Rabindranath Tagore, Howard Taylor, Nils Tägt, Kerry Usher, Gustaf Wikner, Tore Zetterholm, Göran Åberg, Elof Åkesson.


My own comments and speculations:

The well is a well of death (cf. 1 Macc 7:19), thither the woman does not want to go again.

I have translated “aiôn” by “age” comparing this word with “aidiotês” in Wisdom of Solomon 2:23, a word which I think is better to translate by “eternity”. Cf. also My own comments and speculations till John 3:14-15. Concerning "agelong life", see Bible passages at John 3:14-15.


Paul said: "If – according to the circumstances – your enemy may be hungry, give him a morsel, and if – according to the circumstances – he may be thirsty, give him to drink." (Rom 12:20a)

And the life was made visible, and we have beheld (and behold) and we are witnesses and bring a message to you (about) the agelong life, whichever/which (continually) was towards the Father and was made visible to you. (1 John 1:2)

The adornment/’adorned world’ is led by the side of, and its desire, but the one making/doing the will of God stays/abides into the (coming) age. (1 John 2:17)

This is the promise which He Himself promised/made to us, the agelong life. (1 John 2:25)


Greek words:

aiôn (age) (in the Synoptics, John, the Acts, 1-3 John, Rev + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 21:19; Luke 1:55; John 4:14; 1 John 2:17 – Esther 4:17p(C21); 9:31(32); 10:3k(F10); Tobit 1:4; 3:11; 6:8,18; 8:5,15,21; 11:14; 12:17; 13:1,4,6(7),11(BA),12-14,16,18; 14:5(BA),7,10,15; Judith 15:10; 16:17; 1 Macc 2:57; 3:7; 4:24; 8:23; 14:41; 2 Macc 14:15,36; Wisdom of Solomon 3:8; 4:2,19; 5:15; 6:21; 13:9; 14:6,13; 18:4; Sir 1:1,4,15; 2:9; 16:27-28; 17:12; 18:1,10; 24:9; 30:17; 36:17(19); 37:26; 38:34; 39:20; 42:18,21,23; 43:6; 44:2,13,18; 45:7,15,24; 46:19; 47:11,13; 48:25; 49:12; 51:8; Baruch 3:3,32; 4:1; 5:1,4; The Prayer of Azariah v 3; The Song of Praise of the Three Men v 29-67; The Prayer of Manasseh v 13,15. Matt 12:32; 13:22,40,49; 24:3; 28:20; Mark 3:29; 4:19; 10:30; 11:14; Luke 1:33,70; 16:8; 18:30; 20:34-35; John 6:51,58; 8:35,51-52; 9:32; 10:28; 11:26; 12:34; 13:8; 14:16; Acts 3:21; 15:18; 2 John v 2; Rev 1:6,18; 4:9-10; 5:13; 7:12; 10:6; 11:15; 14:11; 15:3(P47,א*); Rev 15:7; 19:3; 20:10; 22:5.

(h)allomai (spring) (in the NT) John 4:14 – Acts 3:8; 14:10.

dipsaô (thirst) (in the NT + examples in the OT) Is 49:10; Sir 24:21; Matt 5:6; John 4:13-15; Rom 12:20 – Ps 42:2(3); 63:1(2); 107:5, Prov 25:21; Is 53:2; 55:1; Judith 8:30; Wisdom of Solomon 11:4; Sir 26:12; 51:24; Matt 25:35,37,42,44; John 6:35; 7:37; 19:28; 1 Cor 4:11; Rev 7:16; 21:6; 22:17.

enthade (hitherward) (in the NT) Luke 24:41; John 4:15 – (3 Macc 6:25); John 4:16; Acts 10:18; 16:28; 17:6; 25:17,24.

mêde (but not) (in the NT) Luke 7:33(א,*א); John 4:15 – Matt 6:25; 7:6; 10:9-10,14; 22:29; 23:10; 24:20; Mark 2:2; 6:11; 12:24; 13:15; Luke 12:22; 14:12; 16:26; 17:23; John 14:27; Acts 4:18; 21:21; Rom 6:13; 9:11; 14:21; 1 Cor 5:8,11; 10:7-10; 2 Cor 4:2; Eph 4:27; 5:3; Phil 2:3; Col 2:21; 2 Thess 2:2; 3:10; 1 Tim 1:4; 5:22; 6:17; 2 Tim 1:8; Tit 2:3(א*,A); Heb 12:5; 1 Pet 3:14; 5:2-3; 1 John 2:15; 3:18; Rev 7:3(א,*א).


Additional studies:

Josua 15:19; Is 43:20; 44:3; Luke 6:21; John 6:27,35; 7:38-39; Rev 7:17; 8:10; 22:1.


Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

J. Duncan M. Derrett "The Samatarian Woman's Purity (Jn. 4:4-42)"; The Evangelical Quarterly 60.4 (Oct.-Dec. 1988): 291-298.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-10; 2010-10-28; 2013-11-02; 2014-10-02)

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4:16-18 Jesus (א,* א, A) says to her: “Withdraw, ‘raise your voice’/call your male and come hitherward.” The woman answered and spoke * (א*, A): “I have not a male.” Jesus says to her: “Finely you spoke, that you (א,*א) have not a male, for five males you had, and the one whom you now have is not your male. This you have truly (א,* א) spoken (and speak).”

Word for word: 4:16 (11 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) says (to)-her Jesus: withdraw raise-(your)-voice (towards)-the male your and come hitherward. 4:17 (18 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus) answered the woman and spoke: male not (i/I)-have. says (to)-her the Jesus: finely (you)-spoke that male not (you)-have. 4:18 (15 words in the Greek text) five for males (you)-have and now (the-one)-whom (you)-have not are your male. this truly (you)-have-spoken-(and-speaks).


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(Adam, Seth, Enosh, Kenan, Mahalael and Jared died. Enoch pleased God well. And continually) he was not found, because God put him (the seventh from Adam) in company with (Himself). (Gen 5:24b, Greek OT)

Abraham ‘caused ... to stand’/set seven lambs of sheep alone/aside. ... And Abraham spoke (to Abimelech) that/: “You shall take these seven lambs from the side of me, in order that they may be into/’purposed for’ a testimony to me, that I dug this well.” (Gen 21:28,30, Greek OT)

Having come into the earth/land of Midian Moses sat down upon the well. But to the priest of Midian it/there (continually) were seven daughters to be shepherds to the sheep of their father ... . Having become/come to the side of (the well) they (continually/repeatedly) ladled out (water) ... Moses settled down by the side of the man and (the priest) gave out his daughter Zipporah to Moses (as) woman. (Ex 2:15b-16a,21, Greek OT)

(Israel) was profaned into the daughters of Moab. ... And behold, a man of the sons of Israel (came) and led ... a Midianite woman ... opposite Moses. ... (And Phinehas killed the Israelite man and the Midianite woman.) ... And a name to the ... Midianite woman was Cozbi, daughter of Zur, beginning/’being a leader’ ... of/in Midian. (Num 25:1b,6a,15, Greek OT)

(Israel) arranged (their men) side by side against Midian, according as the Lord enjoined Moses, and they killed every/all of male sex. And they killed the kings of Midian together with their wounded males, and/namely Evi, Zur, Rekem, Hur and Reba, five kings of Midian. (Num 31:7-8a, Greek OT)

Moses hit ... the commanders of Midian, ... Evi and Rekem and Zur and Hur and Reba, the leaders to the side of Sihon and the ones dwelling (in) the earth/land. (Joshua 13:21b, Greek OT)

Samuel took the horn of olive-oil and anointed (David) in a middle of his (seven, older) brothers. (1 Sam 16:13a, Greek OT)

Jesse begot his first-born Eliab ... Azom/Ozem the sixth, David the seventh. (1 Chron 2:13a,15, Greek OT)

(David said:) “The mountain of God (is) a mountain of fat, a mountain being (an having been) ruled with absolute monarchy, a mountain of fat. In order of what do you ‘take from below’/’fight with’, (you) mountain being (and having been) ruled with absolute monarchy, (with) the mountain, in which God was pleased with to dwell and for/certainly the Lord will pitch a tent (there) into/’up to’ (the) end.” (Ps 68:15-16 or 68:16-17, Greek OT)

(Sarah) had been (and was) given out to seven males, and the evil little demon Asmodeus had slayed them, before 'become them'/'they had become' in company with her, entirely just as it has been (and is) ‘shown from’/shown for women. ... (But for the eighth male, Tobias,) the little demon ran away. ... (Tobit 3:8a; 8:3b, S)

After (the fifth brother the enemies) (continually) led/brought the sixth one, and being about to kill him, he uttered: “You may not be ‘led astray’/’at a loss’ in vain, for we suffer these things because of ourselves, missing (the mark of God) into/’for the purpose of’ the God of ourselves.” (2 Macc 7:18)

Five eminent males upon horses (with) golden bits of bridles‘was in command from’/’led the way on’ of/for the Jews. (2 Macc 10:29b)

(Solomon said to the Lord:) “You have arranged every thing throughout (with) measure and number and standing-place/balance.” (Wisdom of Solomon 11:20b)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said to His disciples:) “If – according to the circumstances - you so may carry your gift to, against the sacrificial altar and you there may remember that your brother has something ‘down from’/against you, let your gift be there in front of the sacrificial altar and withdraw. First ‘be different’/’reconcile yourself’ (with) your brother and having come carry then your gift to (the sacrificial altar).” (Matt 5:23-24)

(Jesus said to His friends:) “By no means five sparrows are sold (for) two assarions/’small copper coins’?” (Luke 12:6a)

(The rich man, who had not taken care of the beggarly man) spoke (to Abraham:) "I so ask you, father, in order that you may send (Lazarus) into my father's house, for I have five brothers, so that he throughout/solemnly may be a witness to them, in order that and/also they may not come into this place of the torment." (Luke 16:27-28)

(Jesus said to some of the Sadducees:) "So they (continually) were seven brothers, and the first, having taken a woman, he died childless; and the second and the third took her. But/and in the same manner the seven ‘and not’/nor left entirely/behind children, and they died. Afterwards the woman died and/also. * (א,* א, A) So in the resurrection, whose woman of them will (א,* א) she be (א,* א)? For the seven had her (as) woman." (Luke 20:29-33)

Some of the scribes spoke (to Jesus): “Teacher, you spoke finely.” (Luke 20:39b)

The honours/price of (the burnt down books having belonged to the men having practised paltry things were) ... five myriads pieces/coins of silvermetal. (Acts 19:19b)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

On the following day (John the Baptist) sees Jesus coming towards him, and he says: “Behold, the Lamb of God, the One lifting/’taking away’ the miss (of the mark of God) of the adornment/’adorned world’!” (John 1:29)

(Jesus) had knowledge of all men. (John 2:24b)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

It is interesting that the word ”male” occurs five times in vv 16-18. (René Kieffer "Johannesevangeliet" p 171; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask) (Cf. “Exegetes, evangelists and others” John 6:8-13)

The chimney-sweep . . . can talk so well with women, also with little girls as Madicken. . . . Madicken wants that (the chimney-sweep and Alva) will dance in eternity of eternities. . . . "Dear me, what I am in love with that chimney-sweep", Alva says. At once Madicken is worried. "No, you must not. He is, as we know, married and has five children." "I know", Alva says. "Therefore I only are going to be in love with him about to Thursday. Or perhaps Friday." (Astrid Lindgren "Madicken och Junibackens Pims" p 187-191; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Christian readers would have noticed the contrast between the number of the beast, 666, and the number of Jesus, 888 (the sum of the Greek letters Jesous). In 888 could be seen suberabundant perfection, the three-fold 7+1. On the other hand 666 indicates the three-fold failure to reach perfection, 7-1. (J. Massyngberde Ford "Revelation" p 226 in her comment to Rev 13:18)

Since earliest times many have seen a symbolism in the husbands. Origen saw a reference to the fact that the Samaritans held as canonical only the five books of Moses. (Raymond E. Brown "The Gospel according to John" p 171)

Who was she, that she would be chosen above all other poor female pedlars to happiness and exhaltation? . . . Yes, who was she, that a man of high station had glanced at her? Every morning, when she woke up, she said to herself: "Isn't it a wonder? Yes, it is a wonder as great as something being told in the Bible. It should be preached about it in the churches." (Selma Lagerlöf "Anna Svärd" s 32; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

It will be God's good pleasure to take out a Church which shall be sanctified by fellowship with His Son, just as that woman was sanctified by intercourse with the prophet (Hosea). ... That which had been done typically through (God's) actions by the prophet, the apostle proves to have been done truly by Christ in the Church. (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 492)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Eric S. Alexandersson, Werner Aspenström, Oloph Bexell, Anne Frank, Alf Henrikson, Jonas Lie, Carl Henrik Martling, Nelly Sachs, August Strindberg, Anton Tjechov, Tomas Tranströmer, Nils Tägt.


My own comments and speculations:

The Midianite women had five kings as lords, as superior men. Specially we can say this about Cozbi, whose father was one of the kings. The name Cozbi means "deceiver", which can explain Jesus' remark to the woman: "Finely you spoke, that you (א,*א) have not a male. ... This you have truly spoken (and speak)." Cozbi had had five males. Her sixth male was an Israelite, who should not have been her male. And Midianite woman Zipporah's "sixth male" Moses was also an Israelite. Now Jesus stands there as He who can be her seventh and at the same time - according to the Jewish number symbolism - perfect male (cf. the expression “demanded/asked Him” i John 4:10a). He will give her agelong life. On the contrary the number six stands for what has missed the mark of God and is imperfect (cf. the expression “as a sixth hour” in John 4:6). The sixth male is exhorted by the woman to go to his well of death (cf. Ex 2:15-16) to be replaced by the seventh male, who in fact is not only a male - a seventh perfect male - but the Man and the spring of life (and the Lamb of God, cf. Gen 21:28,30; John 1:29). Cf. the words of Paul about the letter which kills and the Spirit, who gives life, about the ministry of death and the ministry of the Spirit (2 Cor 3:6-8).

Tobias (the name means "the Lord is good") was the eighth male of his wife. And in contrast to the other seven males, who was killed, Tobias was allowed to live. As the seventh male Jesus also will be killed in order to then reveal himself in John 21:4 as the eighth after the seven males mentioned in John 21:2. Concerning Tobias as a type of Jesus, compare for instance John 12:3,5.

David is described as the seventh son in 1 Chron 2 and as the eighth son in 1 Sam 16. In this way David is a type of Jesus, the Son of David. And the sixth son was Ozem, a name which means "wrath", and this one was not the true male of the Samaritan woman.

Concerning the males here in John 4:16-18 in combination with the mention of the mountains in the following two verses we can also compare with Ps 68:15-16(16-17), where we have the Greek words “oros” (mountain) five times (number 1-4 and 7) and “orê” (mountains) once (number 5-6). The mountain with which God was pleased was number 7 (= Jesus, who also is number 8). Cf. Rev 17:9b-12.

See also My own comments and speculations (concerning the verb “complete”) to John 19:33-37. Furthermore see My own comments and speculations to John 4:43-45.


Greek words:

kalôs (finely) (in the NT + one example in the Apocrypha) Luke 20:39; John 4:17 – 2 Macc 12:43; Matt 12:12; 15:7; Mark 7:6,9,37; 12:28,32; Luke 6:26-27,48; John 8:48; 13:13; 18:23. Acts 10:33; 25:10; 28:25; Rom 11:20; 1 Cor 7:37-38; 14:17; 2 Cor 11:4; Gal 4:17; 5:7; Phil 4:14; 1 Tim 3:4,12-13; 5:17; Heb 13:18; Jas 2:3,8,19; 2 Pet 1:19; 3 John v 6.

pente (five) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) 2 Macc 10:29; Luke 12:6; 16:28; John 4:18; Acts 19:19 – Judith 8:9,15; 1 Macc 2:2; 2 Macc 2:23; 11:5; Matt 14:17,19; 16:9; 25:2,15-16,20; Mark 6:38,41; 8:19; Luke 1:24; 9:13,16; 12:52; 14:19; 19:18-19; John 5:2; 6:9,13,19; Acts 4:4, 7:14; 20:6; 24:1; 1 Cor 14:19; Rev 9:5,10; 17:10.


Additional studies:

Matt 22:25-28; Mark 12:20-23; John 1:48; Rev 13:18; 17:9.


Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-10; 2010-10-30; 2013-11-04; 2014-10-02)

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4:19-22 The woman says to Him: “* (א*) I look at, that You are a prophet. Our fathers prostrated themselves in/on this mountain, and you say, that * (א,* א) it is in (a disgraced) Jerosolyma/Jerusalem whereat/where one must prostrate oneself.” Jesus says to her: “Believe Me, woman, that an hour comes, when you ‘and not’/neither in/on this mountain ‘and not’/nor in (a disgraced) Jerosolyma/Jerusalem will prostrate yourselves (before) the Father (in honour of Him). You prostrate yourselves (in adoration) (towards) what you do not know. We prostrate ourselves (in adoration) (towards) what we know, because the saving is out/’on the basis’ of the Jews.”

Word for word: 4:19 (9 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) says (to)-him the woman: (i/I)-look-at that (a)-prophet are you 4:20 (18 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus) the fathers our in/on the mountain this '(kissed-towards)'/'prostrated-themselves', and you say that in Jerosolymas/'(a-disgraced)-Jerusalem' (it)-is whereat/where 'it-is-necessary'/'one must' '(kiss-towards)'/'prostrate-oneself'. 4:21 (22 words in the Greek text) says (to)-her the Jesus: believe me, woman, that comes (an)-hour when and-not in/on the mountain this and-not in Jerosolymas/'(a-disgraced)-Jerusalem' (you)-will-'(kiss-towards)'/'prostrate-yourselves-(before)' (in-honour-of)-the father. 4:22 (16 words in the Greek text) you '(kiss-towards)'/'prostrate-yourselves' (in-adoration)-(towards)-which/what not (you)-'know-(and-have-known)'/know; we '(kiss-towards)'/'prostrate-ourselves' (in-adoration)-(towards)-which/what (we)-'know-(and-have-known)'/know, because the saving out/'on-the-basis'-of the Jews is.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(The Lord said to Moses: "Having led) My people out of Egypt ... you shall serve/worship God in/on this mountain (Sinai)." (Ex 3:12b, Greek OT)

Moses made a serpent of copper and caused it to stand upon a sign. And it became, when – according to the circumstances – a serpent bit a man, he saw against, against the serpent of copper and lived. (Num 21:9, Greek OT)

(Moses said to Israel:) "You shall give/place the blessing against Mountain Gerizim and the curse against Mountain Ebal. ... Into/on the place, which – according to the circumstances – the Lord our God may choose to us in one of our tribes to (with) His name give a name there to call on ... there you shall seek out and come into." (Deut 11:29b; 12:5, Greek OT)

(Mordocai said to the Lord:) “You have knowledge of all things. You know, Lord, that I have not made/done this in insolence, nor in overweening (pride), nor in false friendship, to not prostrate (in adoration towards) the overweening Haman … and I will not prostrate (in adoration towards) ‘no one’/anyone more than you, my Lord. (Esther 4:17d-ea/C5-7a, Greek OT)

(David said:) “The mountain of God (is) a fat mountain, a mountain being (an having been) ruled with absolute monarchy, a fat mountain. 'In order of what'/why do you ‘take from below’/’fight with’, (you) mountains being (and having been) ruled with absolute monarchy, (with) the mountain which God was pleased with to dwell in it and for/certainly the Lord will pitch a tent (there) into/’up to’ (the) end.” (Ps 68:15-16 or 68:16-17, Greek OT)

(David said:) "The tribes have ascended (to Jerusalem), (the) tribes of the Lord – a testimony for Israel – to confess out/frankly (with) the name of the Lord." (Ps 122:4, Greek OT)

Many nations will go and speak: "Come here, let us ascend into/to the mountain of the Lord. ... For out of Zion law will come out and a saying of the Lord out of Jerusalem.” (Micah 4:2, Greek OT)

(Tobit said:) “All my brothers … offered sacrifice upon all mountains of the Galilea.” (Tobit 1:5, S)

(The king soiled) the temple in (a disgraced) Jerosolyma/Jerusalem ... and the (temple) in/on Gerizim. (2 Macc 6:2a)

(Solomon said: “The wisdom) is easy to be ‘looked at’/perceived by the ones welcoming her and (easy) to be find by the ones seeking her.” (Wisdom of Solomon 6:12b)

(Baruch said to Jerusalem:) “Just as the outstanding women of Sion now have beheld (and behold) your captivity, in this way they will in/with quickness behold your saving from the side of God.” (Baruch 4:24a)

The king … (continually) prostrated before (Bel in honour of him). But Daniel prayed towards the Lord. (Bel and the Dragon v 4b)


The Latter Revelation:

Judas begot ... Jesus, the One being said/called christ/anointed. (Matt 1:3a,16b)

Having ‘loosened from’/dismissed the crowds, (Jesus) ascended into/to the mountain to pray ‘according to’/concerning (the) own (thing). But having become evening, He (continually) was there alone. (Matt 14:23)

(Jesus said to the Canaanite woman:) “O woman, your faith (is) great.” (Matt 15:28a)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "Where two or three having been (and being) led together into My name, there I am in their middle." (Matt 18:20)

Others (continually) said that/: “(Jesus is) a prophet, as one of the prophets.” (Mark 6:15b)

(Jesus said to the people in the temple of (a disgraced) Jerosolyma/Jerusalem:) "... Has it not been (and is it not) written that/: ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all the nations?’" (Mark 11:17a)

(Jesus said to Peter and James and John:) "The hour has come. Behold, the Son of the Man is given ‘to the side of’/over into the hands of the missers (of the mark of God)." (Mark 14:41b)

(Zacharias said: “The Lord God of Israel) has raised a horn of saving for us in a house of His boy David.” (Luke 1:69)

(The Pharisee said to himself:) "If (Jesus) (continually) was a prophet He had – according to the circumstances – (continually) had knowledge of who and of what nature the woman (is) whoever/who touches Him, because she is a misser (of the mark of God)." (Luke 7:39b)

(The Samaritans) did not receive (Jesus), because His face/person (continually) was going into/’for the purpose of’ Jerusalem. (Luke 9:53)

Jesus spoke towards (Zaccheus) that/: "Today it has become/come saving to this house, in so far as and/also he is (א*) a son of Abraham." (Luke 19:9)

It became in His blessing (the disciples), (that Jesus) stood asunder/apart from them * (א*). And having prostrated themselves (in adoration) (towards) Him, they returned into Jerusalem in company with great joy. (Luke 24:51b-52)

(Peter said to the Israelites:) ”Having caused (Jesus) to stand up first to you, God dispatched (Him) away blessing you ‘in the to turn’/’to turn’ back everyone from your evil things.” (Acts 3:26)

(Stephen said to the Israelites: “On the mountain Sinai Moses) received living little sayings to give to you (P74, א,* א, B).” (Acts 7:38b)

(Stephen said:) “The Highest One does not dwell in things made by hand entirely as the prophet says.” (Acts 7:48)

(The Ethiopian eunuch) had come (and came) into Jerusalem to prostrate himself. (Acts 8:27b)

(Paul said to the Athenians: “God) does not dwell in temples made by hand.” (Acts 17:24b)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 - about 1500

The salvation of Israel was seen as a necessary condition for the salvation of the world. (Anders Runesson "Kristustroende judar och avskiljandet av kristendom från judendom" p 318-319; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

In the Samaritan Pentateuch we read in Deut 27:4 the instruction to Joshua to set up a shrine on Gerizim, the sacred mountain of the Samaritans. This reading is probably correct, for the reading "Ebal" in MT may well be an anti-Samarian correction. The Samaritans also made the obligation to worship on Gerizim part of the Decalogue. (Raymond E. Brown "The Gospel according to John" p 171-172)

In the early church ... there were the Prophets. Their function is to be seen in their name. “Prophet” means both a fore-teller and a forth-teller. They foretold the future; but even more they forthtold the will of God. They had no settled sphere; they were not attached to any one church. They were held in the highest honour. “The teaching of the Twelve Apostles” which dates to about A.D. 100, contains the first service order book of the Church. The order for the sacrament of the Lord's Supper is laid down, but then it is said that the prophets are to be allowed to conduct the service as they will. (William Barclay “The Acts of the Apostles” p 91)

I have been very beloved in Germany, very spoilt there. I see piles of letters with warm requests for help. . . . On some days my books probably will be burnt on the squares. Germany is revengeful during the new administration. They will probably not forgive that I am helping the Jews. . . . No doubt this world is curious. We could of course expect that the Germans, so humilated and pained, which they have been during many years, would search for revenge, but who could have a feeling, that it would become persecutions of the Jews and not war against France or Poland, which would give the hatred outflow. I wonder if we will live and see the end of the Hitler government. This I still would wish. (Selma Lagerlöf "Brev 2 - 1903-1940" p 318-319; letter 1933-10-15 to Ida Bäckmann och letter 1933-10-26 to Elisabeth Grundtvig; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

The book of (the author Sven) Lidman is funny. And I do not think it would hurt you. It makes such distinction between Jews and Jews. (Selma Lagerlöf "Du lär mig att bli fri - Selma Lagerlöf skriver till Sophie Elkan" p 371; answer to a letter 1911-12-05; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

1899. August 3rd. Köpmanholm and Furusund are like Ebal and Gerizim, "The Mountain of Curse and the Mountain of Blessing". . . . (In Köpmanholm) is the (spiritual) meeting-house. . . . An ugly farming land. . . . No pleasures. Here also the unhappy ones really are living. In Furusund Gerizim, with its beautiful districts and groves, the houses have names from Italy. (August Strindberg "Ockulta dagboken" p 94; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

I am not an anti-Semite, for I love Arabs and am married with an Arabian woman (Frida Uhl, whose grandmother was said to be a Jewish woman); Jews do not more exist, as little as Greeks, Hellenes. The ones being called Jews now are all possible nations. . . . After the crusades no Orientals dared to come into Europe without being covered by the Synagogue and therefore they called themselves Jews or accepted the Jewish teaching because the mosque was forbidden! (August Strindberg "August Strindbergs brev X febr 1894-april 1895" s 155,159; letter about 1894-07-23 to Leopold Littmansson)

All having got an opportunity of comparing the Roma of the pope and the States of the Church with the Roma of Italy only have one opinion of this, that the city during the last past four years has been changed much to its advantage. Of course I make an exception for the catholic priests, for which Rome ceased to be Paradise in the same time as it ceased to be the capital of ignorance and dirt. . . . If our traveller enters the district of the city, where the Norseman of today often settle down: at Via Felice, Via del Tritone, Capo le Case, Via de due Macelli and so on, he will now (year 1874) trample a good paving and broad pavements. Korso and Via Condotti are no more the only streets, which can show off such ones. Innumerable houses are tidied up, many steps for the promoting of cleanliness taken. The Ghetto itself, the old Jewish quarter, out of which lttle by little a Jewish moving out and a Christian moving in take place, has began to dress up and does not make the reasons for the name to be the most squalid haunt in Europe. (Viktor Rydberg "Kyrkostatens Rom och Italiens" p 243,247; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

How did the Samaritans “know not” what they worshiped? Because they thought that God was local and partial ... (and) in this respect (having) no higher opinion of Him than of their idols. ... The Jews, on the contrary, ... knew that He was God of the world. ... Seest thou how He commendeth the old Covenant, and showeth that it is the root of blessings, and that He is throughout not opposed to the Law, since He maketh the groundwork of all things to come from the Jews? (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:115-116)

The religious separation (between Jews and Samaritans) became final when the Samaritans built a rival temple on Mount Gerizim. (Alfred Edersheim "The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah Part I" p 396)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Stig Abrahamsson, Alf Ahlberg, Lars Ahlberg, Friedrich Ahlfeld, Madeleine Albright, Martin Allwood, Carl Jonas Love Almqvist, Aron Andersson, Axel Andersson, Ivo Andric, Eric Anthoni, Bernt Arvidson, Henrik Berg, Erik Bernspång, Elisabeth Beskow, Natanael Beskow, Per Beskow, Oloph Bexell, Harry Blomberg, Lars-Ola Borglid, Gordon Bridger, Ingmar Brohed, Ivan Bunin, Heinrich Böll, Hjalmar Börjeson, Fredrik Böök, Sten Carlsson, Elizabeth Charles, Driss Chraibi, Deborah Cowley, Stig Dagerman, Sven Danell, Miguel de Cervantes, Johanna-Ruth Dobschiner, Fjodor Dostojevski, Jerzy Einhorn, Albert Engström, Per Ericsson, Bernhard J:son Ernestam, Ernst Evers, Sven Fagerlund, Adolphine Fogtmann, Anne Frank, Fredrik Franson, Otto Funcke, Einar Genitz, Gillis Gerleman, Nikolaj Gogol, Martin Goldsmith, Ebba Grenholm, Carl Grimberg, Berndt Gustafsson, Georg Hafström, Johan Hagner, Björn Hallström, Agne Hamrin, Joseph A. Harriss, Verner von Heidenstam, Jan Arvid Hellström, Johan Hellström, Beth Hennings, C.G. Hjelm, Elis Håstad, Christopher Isherwood, A.H. Jahsmann, Jevgenij Jevtusjenko, Knut Johannesson, Eyvind Johnson, Stanley Jones, Ragnar Järhult, Erik Axel Karlfeldt, Imre Kertész, Torsten Kälvemark, David Lagergren, Lars-Olof Larsson, Olle Larsson, Harry Lenhammar, Sven Lidman, T. Lindhagen, Martin Luther, Carl Henrik Martling, Stanley Meisler, Gabriela Mistral, Vilhelm Moberg, Molière, Pelle Molin, Fredrik Nielsen, Elvy Nilbratt, Bertil Nilsson, Nils Henrik Nilsson, N.P. Ollén, Jeanna Oterdahl, Magnus Ottosson, Efraim Palmqvist, Sven-Erik Pernler, Lewi Pethrus, Abraham Poljak, Henrik Pontoppidan, Harald Rasmussen, Wladyslaw Reymont, Göran Rosenberg, Carl Olof Rosenius, Walter Scott, Sven-Åke Selander, Bo Setterlind, Henryk Sienkiewicz, William B. Silverman, M.P. Simon, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Enock H. Skooglund, Alfred Smedberg, Alexander Solsjenitzyn, Milton Steinberg, Hjalmar Stenberg, Sven Stolpe, John Stott, Svend Erik Stybe, Ingvar Svanberg, Arvid Svärd, Hjalmar Söderberg, Johan Henrik Thomander, Thomas a Kempis, Einar Thomassen, Olof Thulin, E.H. Thörnberg, Anton Tjechov, Bertil Torekull, Frederik Torm, T. Truvé, F. Voltaire, Hans von Waldhaus, Johan Olof Wallin, Kallistos Ware, Paul Wern, Gunnar Westin Silverstolpe, P. Waldenström, Gottlieb Weitbrecht, Knut B. Westman, Anders Winbom, Richard Wurmbrand, Birgitta Yavari, Ernst Zahn, Emile Zola, Göran Åberg.


My own comments and speculations:

For the woman "this mountain" was Mount Gerizim. We here see a conflict between the Samaritans and the Jews; the Samaritans who only accepted Moses' law (the Pentateuch) as the word of God and the Jews who also accepted "the Prophets". The law brought Mount Gerizim into prominence, while the prophets gave prominence to Zion in Jerusalem. Concerning “mountain”, compare also with My own comments and speculations to John 4:16-18.

In the writings of John, according to Sinaiticus, we must make a distinction in the translation of the Greek word “proskyneô” depending on if this word is followed by a dative or an accusative. When the form is dative, the translation can be “prostrate before (in honour of) someone” and when accusative the stronger “prostrate towards (in adoration of) someone”.


Paul said: "Of (the Israelites being) the fathers and out of (them) being the Christ ‘according to’/after the flesh." (Rom 9:5a)


Greek words:

oros (mountain) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Tobit 1:5; Matt 14:23; John 4:20-21; Acts 7:38 – Tobit 5:6,10; Judith 1:15; 2:21; 4:5; 5:1; 6:4,12-13; 7:4,10,12-13; 10:10; 13:10; 14:11; 16:3,15; 1 Macc 2:28; 4:5,18-19,38; 6:39-40; 9:15,38,40; 10:70; 11:37,68; 2 Macc 2:4; 5:27; 9:8,28; 10:6; Wisdom of Solomon 9:8; Sir 16:19; 24:13; 43:4,16,21; Baruch 5:7; Epistle of Jeremiah 38,61(62); The Song of Praise of the Three Men 52; Matt 4:8; 5:1,14; 8:1; 15:29; 17:1,9,20; 21:1,21; 24:3,16; 26:30; 28:16; Mark 3:13; 5:5,11; 6:46; 9:2,9; 11:23; 13:3,14; 14:26; Luke 3:5; 4:29; 6:12; 8:32; 9:28,37; 19:29,37; 21:21,37; 22:39; 23:30; John 6:3,15; (8:1). Acts 1:12; 7:30; 1 Cor 13:2; Gal 4:24-25; Heb 8.5; 11:38; 12:20,22; 2 Pet 1:18; Rev 6:14-16; 8:8; 14:1; 16:20; 17:9; 21:10.

proskyneô (prostrate oneself) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Esther 4:17e(C5); Bel and the Dragon v 4; Luke 24:52; John 4:20-22; Acts 8:27 – Esther 3:2,5; 8:12l(E11); Tobit 5:14; Judith 5:8; 6:18; 8:18; 10:8(9),23; 13:17; 14:7; 16:18; 1 Macc 4:55; Sir 50:17; Epistle of Jeremiah v 5; Bel and the Dragon v 24-25. Matt 2:2,8,11; 4:9-10; 8:2; 9:18; 14:33; 15:25; 18:26; 20:20; 28:9,17; Mark 5:6; 15:19; Luke 4:7-8; John 4:23-24; 12:20. Acts 7:43; 10:25; 24:11; 1 Cor 14:25; Heb 1:6; 11:21; Rev 3:9; 4:10; 5:14; 7:11; 9:20; 11:1,16; 13:4,8,12,15; 14:7,9,11; 15:4; 16:2; 19:4,10,20; 20:4; 22:8-9.

sôtêria (saving) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Baruch 4:24; Luke 1:69; 19:9; John 4:22 – Esther 4:17d(C6); 8:12u(E23); Tobit 5:17; 6:18; 8:4-5,17; Judith 8:17; 11:3; 1 Macc 3:6; 4:25; 5:62; 2 Macc 3:29,32; 7:25; 11:6; 12:25; 13:3; 14:3; Wisdom of Solomon 5:2; 6:24; 16:6; 18:7; Baruch 4:22,29. Luke 1:71,77. Acts 4:12; 7:25; 13:26,47; 16:17; 27:34; Rom 1:16; 10:1,10; 11:11; 13:11; 2 Cor 1:6; 6:2; 7:10; Eph 1:13; Phil 1:19,28; 2:12; 1 Thess 5:8-9; 2 Thess 2:13; 2 Tim 2:10; 3:15; Heb 1:14; 2:3,10; 5:9; 6:9; 9:28; 11:7; 1 Pet 1:5,9-10; 2:2; 2 Pet 3:15; Jude v 3; Rev 7:10; 12:10; 19:1.


Additional studies:

Gen 33:20; Ex 19:1-3; Deut 12:11; 16:16; 18:15-18; 27:12; Joshua 8:33; 1 Kings 9:3; 2 Kings 17:28-41; 2 Chron 6:6; 7:12, Ps 76:1-2(2-3); 122; Is 2:3; Mal 1:11; Matt 21:11,13,46; Luke 7:16; 19:46; 24:19,47; John 1:21; 5:25,28; 6:14; 7:40; 9:17; 16:2,32; Acts 7:7; 17:23; Rom 3:1-2; 9:4; 11:17-18; 1 Cor 14:24-25; 2 Tim 2:8; Rev 7:11; 11:1; 13:8; 17:10; 21:22.


Robert J. Bull "An Archaeological Context for Understanding John 4:20"; Biblical Archaeologist (1975): 54-59.

Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

Bengt Holmberg "Judisk 'contra' kristen identitet i urkyrkan?"; Svensk Exegetisk Årsbok 60 (1995): 49-67.

Bengt Holmberg "Reciprocitetsnyanser i 'allêlôn'"; Svensk Exegetisk Årsbok 51 (1986): 90-99.

Thomas D. Lea "Who Killed the Lord? A Defense Against the Charge of Anti-Semitism in John's Gospel"; Criswell Theological Review 7 (1994): 103-123.

J.C. McCullough "Anti-Semitism in Hebrews: A Formal Analysis and Theological Conclusions"; Trinity Journal 13.1 (1992): 21-59.

Stephen Motyer "The Fourth Gospel - an Appeal to Jews"; Tyndale Bulletin 45.1 (1994): 201-205.

J. Munck "Judekristendomen efter apostlarnas dagar"; Svensk Exegetisk Årsbok 25 (1960): 78-96.

J.C. O'Neill "The Jews in the Fourth Gospel"; Irish Biblical Studies 18.1 (1996): 58-74.

James B. Sweeney "Stephen's speech (Acts 7:2-53): Is it as 'Anti-Temple' as is Frequently Alleged?"; Trinity Journal 23.2 (2002): 185-210.

John Christopher Thomas "The Fourth Gospel and Rabbinic Judaism"; Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 82 (1991): 159-182.

Kevin J. Vanhoozer "Worship att the Well. From Dogmatics to Doxology (and Back Again)." Trinity Journal 23.1 (2002): 3-16.

Jon A. Weatherly "The Jews in Luke-Acts"; Tyndale Bulletin 40.1 (1989): 107-117.

S. Wilson "Anti-Judaism in the Fourth Gospel?"; Irish Biblical Studies 1.1 (1979): 28-50.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-11; 2010-11-05; 2013-11-07; 2014-10-03)

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4:23-24 However, an hour comes, and it is now, when the true ‘prostrators’ will prostrate themselves before the Father (in honour of Him) in spirit and truth. For the Father seeks (certainly) and/also of such kind the ones prostrating (towards) Him (in adoration of Him). God (is) spirit, and the ones prostrating themselves * (א*) must prostrate themselves in a spirit of (א*) truth.

Word for word: 4:23 (26 words in the Greek text) however comes (an)-hour and now (it)-is, when the true (towardskissers)/prostrators will-'(kiss-towards)'/'prostrate-themselves-(before)' (in-honour-of)-the father in spirit and truth. and/also for the father of-such-kind seeks the-(ones)-(in-adoration) '(kissing-towards)'/prostrating (towards)-him. 4:24 (11 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) spirit the god and the-(ones) '(kissing-towards)'/'prostrating themselves' in spirit (of)-truth must '(kiss-towards)'/prostrate.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(Moses said to Israel:) "What great nation (is) that with it is a god drawing near to them as the Lord our God (is) in/with all which – if according to the circumstances – may ‘call on’/invoke Him? (Deut 4:7, Greek OT)

(David said:) "The Lord (is) near all the ones ‘calling on’/invoking Him, all the ones ‘calling on’/invoking Him in truth." (Ps 145:18, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to His people:) "The heaven (is) My throne but/and the earth is a footstool of My feet. What house shall you build for Me? Or what (is) a place of My stillness? ... However, against ‘a certain’/this one I will see against or against the humble one and quiet one and (the one) quivering (because of) My sayings." (Is 66:1,2b, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Israel:) “You received My sayings and My lawful things, as many as I in spirit enjoin My slaves My prophets.” (Zech 1:6a, Greek OT)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said to the Pharisees: “Something) greater than the sanctuary is here.” (Matt 12:6b)

(Through the prophet Isaiah the Lord said about Jesus:) "Behold, My boy whom I have adopted, My welcomed * (א*, B) (with) whom My soul was well-pleased, I will put My spirit against Him. And He will bring away a message (about) a judgment to the nations." (Matt 12:18)

(Jesus) says to (the Pharisees): “How does David so in spirit call (Christ) ‘Lord’?” (Matt 22:43a)

Having stood up some (continually) were false witnesses ‘down from’/against (Jesus), saying that/: "We heard Him saying: 'I will loosen down/up this temple, the one made by hand, and through/during three days I will build another not made by hand.'" (Mark 14:57-58)

Having stood up (the son) came towards his father. But on his still holding far off, his father beheld him and was moved in his inward vital parts. (Luke 15:20a)

(Jesus said:) “Let the little boys and girls be to come towards Me and do not hinder them, for of (men) of such kind is the kingdom of God.” (Luke 18:16)

(Stephen said:) “The Highest One does not dwell in things made by hand entirely as the prophet says.” (Acts 7:48)

(Paul said to the king:) ”I have - according to the circumstances - a prayer to God ... (that) all the ones hearing me ... become of such kind of what kind and/also I am, besides these bands.” (Acts 26:29)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

Jesus answered (Nicodemus): "Amen, amen, I say to you: If not – according to the circumstances – a certain (person) may be begotten out of water and spirit, he is not able to behold (א*) the kingdom of the heavens (א*)." (John 3:5)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

The congregation is a community with God and therefore the temple of God. This comes easily in the background when we lay great stress on the buildings we are gathered in to hold divine service and have activities. These buildings are called "houses of God" and sometimes even temples. This risks to border the presence and work of God to a room. The church is even so associated with building that it is difficult to think it can exist without a special church building. (Leif Carlsson "Tröst och trots - Uppenbarelseboken" p 246 in comment to Rev 21:1-22:5; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Here Jesus is not saying "God is one spirit among many"; rather his meaning is "God's essential nature is spirit." ... There is an ambiguity connected with "toioutous". The meaning might be "the Father seeks such to be his worshippers" or, "The Father seeks that his worshippers be such." Most authors take the former meaning, but Phillips translates, "Indeed, the Father looks for men who will worship Him like that." (Leon Morris "The Gospel according to John" p 240)

You are no doubt right there that the last line (in the legend Ljuslågan "What has been worked by the light, which during dark times has come from Jerusalem, it can neither be measured nor be counted") distorts the idea, but then in the last it occurred to me such a spontaneous feeling of thankfulness to Christ. I saw him working through the times only thereby that he had been true to his mission. He had demanded spirit and truth, where all other religions only had demanded dead form. This has reacted on your Judaism and on my Godfatherfaith. None of us are Christians, but who can obliterate him out of his life, but it is not logic but a matter of sentiment. (Selma Lagerlöf "Du lär mig att bli fri - Selma Lagerlöf skriver till Sophie Elkan" s 236; answer to letter 1904-06-08; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

"Men", (Gösta Berling) . . . solemnly (said), "I see the green earth covered by works of men. The pyramids weight the earth, the Tower of Babel has pierced the sky, the beautiful temples and the grey castles have risen out of the gravel. But of all what hands have built, what is it, which have not fallen or will fall? Oh, men, throw the trowel and the clay mould! Spread the apron of the bricklayer over your heads and lie down to build the light castle of the dreams! What has the spirit to do with temples of stone and clay? Learn to build imperishable castles of dreams and visions." With that he laughing went to rest. (Selma Lagerlöf "Gösta Berlings saga" p 163; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Deep in the Christian time among Scandinavians the idea lived that their heathen fathers believed in the existence of an Eden, from which sorrow, pain, defects, old age, illness and death were shut out. This Eden was called . . . "Not field of dead ones . . . earth of living men". It was situated not in heaven, but down there, neither on the surface of the earth, nor in the nether world, but separated from the built-up countries of men in a way, which did it not impossible, but nevertheless extremely venturesome to come there. A fairy-tale from the fourteenth century, taken up in the Flatö-book, and with some corrections in "Fornald. Sag. III", tells: Erik, the son of a Norwegian king of a little country, one Christmas Eve gave the promise to visit Odains-aker, and this rumour became known over all Norway. In company with a Danish prince, who also was called Erik, they set off. . . . At a distance they saw a tower. In that direction they continued to go, and they found, when they had come nearer, that the tower stood free in the air without foundation or posts. A ladder brought up to it. In the tower there was a room, arrayed with velvet, and there was a beautiful table with delicious dishes on silver plates and wine in golden drinking-vessels. There also were excellently made beds. The two men now were convinced that they had come to Odains-aker and they thanked God that they had achieved their goal. They refreshed themselves and went to sleep. In the sleep a beautiful boy came to Erik. The boy mentioned him by name, said himself be one of the angels watching the gate-way of Paradise, and also Erik's guardian angel, who was at his side, when he gave the promise to seek out Odains-aker. . . . The angel informed him that Odains-aker . . . where he now stayed was not the same place as Paradise, for to this only spirits are allowed to come, and this is the kingdom of spirits, Paradise, so glorious, that Odains-aker, in comparison with it, is as a waste. Nevertheless these two different districts border next to each other, and the river, which Erik had seen, has in Paradise its spring. (Viktor Rydberg "Mythen om underjorden" p 235-237; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Alf Ahlberg, Deborah Alcock, John Allen, Augustinus, Marcus Birro, Knut Björk, Lars-Ola Borglid, Sven Danell, Douglas Davies, Ylva Eggehorn, Stefan Einhorn, E.J. Ekman, LarsOlov Eriksson, Björne Erixon, François Fénelon, J. Fjellstedt, Peter Fjellstedt, Bo Frid, Olle Gellerman, Bo Giertz, George Gifford, Carl Grimberg, Peter Halldorf, Georg Friedrich Hegel, Alf Henrikson, Otto Hermansson, Liselotte J. Andersson, Beki Yelemia Kibangu, David Knowles, Oscar Krook, Annty Landherr, Sven Lidman, Ulla Lidman-Frostenson, Paul Lindblom, Gustaf Linder, Martin Luther, Henning Mankell, Carl Henrik Martling, Arthur Maxwell, Vilhelm Moberg, Fabian Månsson, Stephen Neill, Sinikka Neuhaus, Frecdrik Nielsen, Sven Nilsson, T.H. Odencrants, Efraim Palmqvist, Michael Nazir-Ali, Martin P:n Nilsson, Hilding Pleijel, Harald Rasmussen, Gösta Sandberg, Erich Sauer, Tomas Sjödin, Erik Sollerman, Milton Steinberg, August Strindberg, Jesper Svartvik, Nathan Söderblom, Rabindranath Tagore, Alf Tergel, Johan Henrik Thomander, Einar Thomassen, U.L. Ullman, P. Waldenström, Johan Olof Wallin.


My own comments and speculations: Two expressions similar to "God is spirit" we have in the first letter of John, "God is light" (1 John 1:5) and "God is (a) welcome" (1 John 4:8). (Cf. Brown p 172)


Paul said to the believers in Rome: " . . . I serve (God) in my spirit." (Rom 1:9a)

Paul said to the believers in Corinth: "The one attaching oneself to the Lord is one spirit (with Him)." (1 Cor 6:17)

Paul said to the believers in Corinth: ”The last Adam (became) into/to a spirit making alive.” (1 Cor 15:45b)

Paul said to the believers in Philippi: "We are ... (the ones) serving God in spirit ... and not being (and not having been) persuaded in flesh." (Phil 3:3)

Little children, we may not welcome (with) saying and (א,*א) tongue however/but in/with work and truth. (1 John 3:18)

The one not welcoming has not gained knowledge of God, that God is a welcome. (1 John 4:8)

This is the One having come through water and blood and spirit (א,* א, A), Jesus Christ, not in the water only, however/but in the water and in * (א,* א) blood and the Spirit is the One being a witness, because the Spirit is the truth. (1 John 5:6)


Greek words:

proskynêtês (“prostrator”) John 4:23. Cf. proskyneô in John 4:19-22.

toioutos (of such kind) (in the NT + one example in the Apocrypha) Luke 18:16; John 4.23; Acts 26:29 – Sir 49:14; Matt 9:8; 18:5; 19:14; Mark 4:33; 6:2; 7:13; 10:14; 13:19; Luke 9:9; John (8:5); 9:16; Acts 16:24; 19:25; 22:22; Rom 1:32; 2:2-3; 16:18; 1 Cor 5:1,5,11; 7:15,28; 11:16; 15:48; 16:16,18; 2 Cor 2:6-7; 3:4,12; 10:11; 11:13; 12:2-3,5; Gal 5:21,23; 6:1; Eph 5:27; Phil 2:29; 2 Thess 3:12; Tit 3:11; Philemon v 9; Heb 7:26; 8:1; 11:14; 12:3; 13:16; Jas 4:16; 3 John v 8.


Additional studies: 1 Kings 8:27; John 1:18; 4:21; 5:25,28; 14:17; 15:26; 16:2,13,32; 20:22; Rom 12:1; 13:11; 2 Cor 3:17-18; Eph 2:18; Rev 1:10; 4:2,10; 5:14; 9:20; 11:1,16; 13:12; 14:9; 19:10; 20:4; 22:6.

John Broadus "True Spiritual Worship: John 4:1-42"; Southern Baptist Journal of Theology 2.4 (Winter 1998): 24-33.

Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

C. John Collins "John 4:23-24 'In Spirit and Truth': An Idiomatic Proposal"; Presbyterion 21 (1995): 118-121.

John Christopher Thomas "The Fourth Gospel and Rabbinic Judaism"; Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 82 (1991): 159-182.

S. Petri "Tillbedjan i ande och sanning: En exegethistorisk skiss till Joh 1:19-24"; Svensk Exegetisk Årsbok 11 (1946): 47-76.

Kevin J. Vanhoozer "Worship att the Well. From Dogmatics to Doxology (and Back Again)." Trinity Journal 23.1 (2002): 3-16.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-11; 2010-11-09; 2013-11-08; 2014-10-04)

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4:25-26 The woman says to Him: “I know that Messiah comes, the One being said/called christ/anointed. When that One – according to the circumstances – may come, He will bring up a message to us (about) all things of it.” Jesus says to her: “I am the One talking (with) you.”

Word for word: 4:25 (17 words in the Greek text) says (to)-him the woman: (i/I)-'know-(and-have-known)'/know that Messiah comes the-(one) being-said christ/anointed; when-according-to-the-circumstances may-come that-(one), (he)-will-bring-up-a-message (to)-us (about)-all-(things)-of-it." 4:26 (9 words in the Greek text) says (to)-her the Jesus: i/I (i/I)-am the-(one) talking (with)-you.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

Moses spoke (directed) towards God: “Behold, I shall come towards the sons of Israel, and I shall speak towards them: ‘The God of your fathers has dispatched (and dispatches) me away towards you.’ They will ask me: 'What (is) a name to Him?' What shall I speak towards them?” And God spoke towards Moses: “I am the One who is.” And He spoke: “In this way you shall speak to the sons of Israel: ‘The One who is has dispatched (and dispatches) me away towards you.’” (Ex 3:13-14, Greek OT)

Moses brought up a message to Aaron (about) all the sayings of the Lord with which He had dispatched (him) away. (Ex 4:28a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Moses about Israel:) "I will cause a prophet to stand up to them out of their brothers just as you, and I will give My word in his mouth, and he shall talk (with) them, in so far as I - according to the circumstances - may enjoin him.” (Deut 18:18, Greek OT)

(The Lord said:) "Behold, behold that/: “I am.” (Deut 32:39a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said:) “I am, I am the Lord, talking righteousness and bringing up a message (about) truth.” (Is 45:19b, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to His people:) "I am, I am the One calling you to the side of (Me)." (Is 51:12a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said:) “My people will have knowledge of My name in that day, that I am the One talking: ’I am by the side of.’” (Is 52:6, Greek OT)

(The Lord God said to the prophet:) “You, son of man, speak to the leader of Tyre: This is what the Lord says: ‘ ... Your heart was heightened/raised and you spoke: God, I am ... but you are a man and not a god. You have given/made your heart as a heart of a god.” (Ezek 28:2, Greek OT)

(Judith said to Holophernes: “Achior) brought up a message (about) all things, as many as he talked/spoke out by the side of you.” (Judith 11:9b)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said: “As) a man will not behold a sudden shift of wind, more/most of the works (of the Lord are) in things hidden away. Who will bring up a message (about) works of righteousness? Or who will ’stay behind’/abide (them)? For the covenant/’His last will’ (is) far. (The one with) a heart being lessened ‘understands throughout’/considers these things. (Sir 16:21-23a)


The Latter Revelation:

Out of (Mary, the woman of Joseph) was begotten Jesus, the One being said/called christ/anointed. (Matt 1:16b)

Peter spoke to (Jesus): “Lord, if You are, exhort me to come towards You against the waters.” But/and He spoke: "Come!" (Matt 14:28b-29a)

(Some of the guard) broughtup (א,* א) a message to the priest leaders (about) all things of it that had become/’come about’. (Matt 28:11b)

… The name (of Jesus) had become visible. (Mark 6:14a)

So indeed the ones having been sown asunder came through bringing the saying (as) a good little message. But/and having come down into the city of Samaria Philip proclaimed Christ to them. (Acts 8:4-5)

(Cornelius) ... explained all of it to (the ones being with him). (Acts 10:8a)

(Paul said to the elders in Ephesos:) ”I did not ‘dispatch under to not’/’omit to’ bring up a message to you (about) every counsel of God.” (Acts 20:27)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

(Andrew) says to (Simon): "We have found (and find) the Messiah", which ‘is being’/is translated christ/anointed. (John 1:41b)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

In the whole NT the transcribed word ”Messiah” only occurs here and above in John 1:41. … The evangelist here seems to have wanted to emphasize the Jewish background of the Christ concept. (René Kieffer "Johannesevangeliet" p 106; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

The Samaritans seem to have expected the advent of a Messiah, though it does not appear that they used that word. The Coming One was called by them Taheb, He who returns, or, He who restores. (C.K. Barrett "The Gospel according to St John" p 239)

And whence came the Samaritans to expect the coming of Christ, seeing that they received Moses only? From the writings of Moses themselves. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:116)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Alf Ahlberg, Vicente Aleixandre, Werner Aspenström, Leo Baeck, LarsOlovEriksson, Jacob Frese, Johannes Gossner, Stefan Gustavson, Bernhard Karlgren, Pär Lagerkvist, Torgny Lindgren, Edin Lövås, Vilhelm Moberg, John Ongman, Efraim Rang, John Stott, Edith Södergran, Tomas Tranströmer.


My own comments and speculations:

Concerning the name of God, compare the seven "I am-names" for Jesus. "I am the bread of life" (John 6:35), "I am the light of the adornment/’adorned world’" (John 8:12), "I am the door" (John 10:7), "I am the fine shepherd" (John 10:11), "I am the resurrection and the life" (John 11:25), "I am the way, even the truth and the life" (John 14:6) and "I am the true vine" (John 15:1). The number seven expresses completion and perfection (cf. Matt 5:17). In Rev 1:8 we have the eighth “I am-name” for Jesus. The number eight tells about the beginning of a new period different from the preceding period. On "I am", see also John 8:24,28,58; 9:35-37.

Together the expression ”I am” (egô eimi) occurs 24 times in the Gospel of John, 23 times out of Jesus' mouth and once out of the mouth of the man being born blind (cf. my own comments and speculations to John 9:8-9). The number 24 is the number of the people of God in the OT and the NT (cf. my own comments and speculations to John 6:16-21).

Concerning Messiah, see My own comments and speculations to John 1:20.


Jesus Christ (is) the same yesterday and today and into the (coming) ages. (Heb 13:8)

And this is the message which we have heard (and hear) from Him and (which) we bring up a message to you, that God is light and (that) gloom is not ‘not anything’/’at all’ in Him. (1 John 1:5)


Greek words:

anangellô (bring up a message) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Judith 11:9; Sir 16:22; Matt 28:11(א,* א); John 4:25; Acts 20:27; 1 John 1:5 – Esther 4:4; Judith 5:3; 10:22; 11:15,19; 14:8; Epistle of Jeremiah “Prologue”; Susanna v 10(Theod); John 16:13-14; Acts 14:27; 15:4; 19:18; 20:20; Rom 15:21; 2 Cor 7:7; 1 Pet 1:12.

(h)apas (all of it, them etc.) (in the NT) Matt 28:11; John 4:25; Acts 10:8 – Matt 6:32; 24:39; Mark 1:27; 8:25; 11:32; Luke 3:21; 4:6; 5:26; 7:16(א,*א,A); 8:37; 15:13(א,*א,A); 17:27(א,*א,A); Luke 17:29(P75,א,*A); 19:37,48; 20:6; 23:1. Acts 2:44; 4:31-32; 5:12,16; 11:10; 16:3,28,33(א,*א,B); 25:24; 27:33; Gal 3:28(א,*א,A); Eph 6:13; Jas 3:2; 4:16(א,*א).


Additional studies:

Ex 3:6; 20:2; Is 43:12-13; John 9:37; 12:49-50; Rev 1:8; 4:8.


Barry J. Beitzel "Exodus 3:14 And The Divine Name. A Case of Biblical Paronomasia."; Trinity Journal 1.1 (1980): 5-20.

Laurence Cantwell "Immortal Longings in the Sermone Humili: A Study of John 4:5-26"; Scottish Journal of Theology 36 (1983): 73-.

Joseph B. Flatt "The God Who Is! Exodus 3:14-15"; Reformation and Revival 7.2 (Spring 1998): 103-117.

K.L. McKay "'I am' in John's Gospel"; Expository Times 107 (1996): 302-303.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-12; 2010-11-11; 2013-11-09; 2014-10-06)

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4:27-30 And on/’immediately after’ this His disciples came and they (continually) wondered, that He (continually) talked in company with a woman. Nevertheless no one spoke to Him (א,*א): “What do You seek?” or: “What/why do You talk in company with her?” The woman so let her water-pot be and went away into the city, and she says to the men: “Come here! Behold a man who has spoken to me all what (א,* א, B) I have made/done. Surely is not this One the christ/'anointed one'?” They so (P66,א,*א) came out, out of the city, and they (continually) came towards Him.

Word for word: 4:27 (24 words in the Greek text) And on this came the disciples his and (they)-wondered-(continually) that in-company-with (a)-woman (he)-talked-(continually); no-one nevertheless spoke (to)-him: what seek-(you) or what talk-(you) in-company-with her? 4:28 (16 words in the Greek text) let-be so the water-pot her the woman and went-away into the city and (she)-says (to)-the men: 4:29 (14 words in the Greek text) come behold (a)-man who spoke (to)-me all-(things) which (i/I)-made, surely this-(one) is the christ/anointed? 4:30 (9 words in the Greek text) (they)-came-out so out-of the city and came-(continually) towards him.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(The Lord God said to the woman:) "Your ‘turning away’/refuge will be towards your male, and he will be your lord." (Gen 3:16b, Greek OT)

Rebekah went out ... having the water-pot upon her shoulders. ... Having descended against the spring she fulfilled the water-pot and ascended. (Gen 24:15b,16b, Greek OT)

Having come to/forward Jacob rolled away the stone from the mouth of the well and gave the sheep of Laban, his mother's brother, to drink. And (he) ‘was friends with’/kissed Rachel and ... wept. ... (And Rachel ran and) brought away a message to her father ... . As Laban heard the name of Jacob, his sister's son, he ran into a meeting (with) him and having ‘taken him around’/’embraced him’, he ‘was friends with’/kissed him and led him into his house. (Gen 29:10b-11,12b-13a, Greek OT)

God ascended from (Israel) out of the place, where He had talked in company with him. (Gen 35:13, Greek OT)

(Elisah said to the enemies:) “Come here behind me, and I will lead you away towards the male, who You seek.” And he led them away into Samaria. (2 Kings 6:19b, Greek OT)

(The psalmist said:) “Come here (and) hear and I will describe to all the ones fearing God as much as He has made/done for my soul.” (Ps 66:16, Greek OT)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) "Evil of a woman (is) from a woman. Evil of a male (is) more powerful than a woman doing good, and a woman putting down a shame to (her own ones) into/meets reproach.” (Sir 42:13b-14)


The Latter Revelation:

Having let the nets be (Simon Peter and Andrew) straightaway followed (Jesus). ... Having let the boat and their father be (James and John) straightaway followed (Jesus). (Matt 4:20,22)

(Jesus said:) "Come here towards Me, all being bothered and being (and having been) burdened, and I will bring you to rest. ... (for) My load is light." (Matt 11:28,30b)

(All the crowds) (continually) said (about Jesus): "Surely is not this One the Son of David?” (Matt 12:23)

(The messenger said to the women: “Jesus) is not here, for He has been raised, entirely as He spoke. Come here, behold the place whereat He (continually) lay.” (Matt 28:6)

(The disciples) were troubled. But straight/’straight off’ (Jesus) talked in company with them, and He says to them: “Be confident! I am, do not fear!” (Mark 6:50b)

Having heard ‘on account of ‘/about (Jesus) a woman, who (continually) had * (P45,א,*א) the little daughter (with) an unclean spirit, having come in (א,* א) she fell towards, towards His feet. But the woman (continually) was a Greek, a Syrophoenician (in) the descent. And she (continually/repeatedly) asked Him, ‘in order that’/that he might throw out the little demon, out of her daughter. And He (continually/repeatedly) said to her: "Let the children first be to be fed, for it is not fine to take the bread of the children and throw (it) to the little dogs." But she answered and says to Him: "Yes (א,*א,B), Lord, and/also the little dogs below the table eat from the crumbs of the little boys and girls." And He spoke to her: "Because of this saying, withdraw. The little demon comes (and has come) out, out of your daughter." (Mark 7:25b-29)

(Peter said to the people:) “Males, Israelites, why do you wonder on/’for the sake of’ this, or why do you gaze at us as an own ability or a reverence has made (and makes) (the lame man) to walk about?” (Acts 3:12b)

So indeed the ones having been sown asunder came through bringing the saying (as) a good little message. But/and having come down into the city of Samaria Philip proclaimed Christ to them. (Acts 8:4-5)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

The woman, the Samaritan woman, * (א*) says to (Jesus): “How (is it that) You, being a Jew, demand to drink from the side of me, being a woman, a Samaritan woman?” (John 4:9)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 - about 1500

Probably the evangelist wants to imply that the woman leaves the water-pot, because she no more is in need of it. Jesus has proved to be able to give her a water, which gives eternal life. (René Kieffer "Johannesevangeliet" p 107, translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

It is a fact that, with very few exceptions, the girls and women mentioned or referred to in the New Testament were on the side of the Lord. ... The women honored him and ministered to his and to his disciples' needs. (William Hendriksen "The Gospel of Luke" p 420)

Imperfect tense (of "shock/wonder") indicates more than momentary surprise. (Raymond E. Brown "The Gospel according to John" p 173)

The disciples are not surprised that Jesus is talking to a Samaritan, but that he is talking to a woman. (Rudolf Bultmann "The gospel of John" p 179)

It is quite clear that Christians have, during the last century, more freely than Hindus or Muhammedans, educated women. The only reason is the obvious one that the Christian view of womanhood is quite clearly in opposition to that of Hinduism and Islam. ... The awful idea that woman is primarily a creature of sex has been widely prevalent in all parts of the world. But wherever the spirit of Jesus Christ has been allowed to work, wherever His teaching has been honestly faced, and the implications of His life and words loyally accepted, the liberation of women and the acknowledgment of her human and spriritual rights has followed. ... The Hindus, without exception, affirm that the custom of secluding their women was never known before the Mohammedan invasion. They say that it became necessary as a means of protecting their wives and daughters when they went abroad. If comely in looks, they were in danger whenever they appeared in public and hence the custom was borrowed from the Mohammedans themselves, of either shutting their wives and daughters up at home or keeping them closely veiled when going abroad. (Frank B. Rehnstrom "An outline of Missionary Enterprise in India, Nepal & Pakistan p 167-168,173)

In the fact that two holy souls, Simeon and Hannah, a man and a woman, were on the spot in the temple, there was a prophecy about the coming formation of the church of Christ. Among the Jews the woman was considered to stay much under the man. ... But through the child now resting in the arms of Simeon and who they both praised, the woman would get full equality with the man. Spiritually this began already in the days of Jesus' flesh. Ha assembled male disciples around himself, but also just as devoted female disciples. In the assemblies of believers this equality is realized. Also in civil meaning it will be realized. (Karl Palmberg "Ur livskällan. Tredje årgången." p 51-52; comment to Luke 2:33-40; Karl Palmberg /1842-1920/ was from 1883 a Lutheran clergyman in Månsarp in the diocese of Växjö and president in Jönköpings Missionsförening (Missionary Society) 1886-1911; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

That the child is an undeveloped man is, I suppose, independent of taste, even if infant prodigies are given; as independent of opinions is, I suppose, the fact that the woman is a rudimentary male, even if there are given exceptions. (August Strindberg "Idolatri, Gynolatri" s 67; October 1903; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Christianity is for me a setback in the evolution, the religion af the little ones, the miserable ones, the eunuchs, the women, the childs and the savages. Therefore it is in direct opposition to our evolution wanting to protect the strong one against the bad art, and the penetration of the woman now seems to me be a symptom of the retrogradation of the race and a consequence of Christianity. . . . To the mob I regard all women as being lower forms of existence. (August Strindberg "August Strindbergs brev VII febr 1888-dec 1889" p 191-192; letter 1888-12-04 to Georg Brandes and added footnote in letter 1888-12-05 to David Bergström; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

I have for three years in foreign countries kept company with and observed about a hundred women of all nations and I have not understood anything else of their presumptuous behaviour, full of hatred, than it is a question to come over, not by the side. Only read their books and plays; what a shamelessness in the dealing with the man! And observe how I, who only has said the same thing about them, as they about us, and with greater reason and right, how I have been treated. But I shall fight till my last nerve stump stands, and if they gnaw me to death, you then can write a play about "the last man". (August Strindberg "August Strindbergs brev VI aug 1886-jan 1888" p 148; letter 1887-01-22 to Edvard Brandes; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

When we . . . come into the church (in Östra Ämtervik), we of course sit down in the first pew in the gallery, for the gentleman's families are in the habit of sitting there. We always are sitting to the left side in the gallery. It is not all right to sit down to the right, for this is the side of the males. If it was quite full on the side of the women and a great deal of seats on the other side of the aisle with the men, it would however not be all right to walk over there. You rather have to stand the whole service. (Selma Lagerlöf "Ett barns memoarer" p 115; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

"After in one place once having begun to burn witches", an authour writes in the seventeenth century, "more and more arose, the more they burnt." In several municipalities in Germany and France all female inhabitants were burnt. (Viktor Rydberg "Medeltidens magi" p 136; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Great is the gift (of the Spirit), since the grace passes over to the other sex also, not as of old, it was limited to just one or two individuals, as Deborah and Huldah. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XI:33 commenting Acts 2:17-18)

Observe the zeal and wisdom (of the woman). She came to draw water, and when she had lighted upon the true Well, she after that despised the material one; teaching us even by this trifling instance when we are listening to spiritual matters to overlook the things of this life, and make no account of them. For what the Apostles did, that, after her ability, did this woman also. They when they were called, left their nets; she of her own accord, without the command of any, leaves her water pot, and winged by joy performs the Office of Evangelists. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:118)

God has given to women (like to males) the ability to observe all things which is righteous and virtuous; but we see that the bodily form of the male has been different from the bodily form of the female; yet we know that neither of them is righteous or unrighteous merely for this cause, but (is considered righteous) by reason of piety and righteousness. (Justin Martyr, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 206)

Many women, being strengthened by the grace of God, have performed numerous manly exploits. (Clement of Rome to the Corinthians, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 20)

To instruct a woman in the Law was forbidden (for a Rabbi); comp. the story in Bemid. R. 9. (Alfred Edersheim "The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah Part I" p 418)

Until they were safely middle-aged, respectable women never went out except in the company of a female servant. The tabu was a strong one. ... The normal reasons for going out would be to visit neighbours, friends, or relations. ... The citizen's wife could only ever really go out for amusement or pleasure on religious occasions. ... (Religious) festivals were numerous throughout the year, but a woman did not have to wait for one. She might at any time feel the need to visit a shrine or sanctuary. Sostratos, the rich young man in Menander's Dyskolos, complains that his mother is forever making excursions to sacrifice to some god or other. On the particular occasion of the play she had dreamt about the god Pan, and had hired a professional caterer to go and prepare a large picnic at his sanctuary in the mountains. (Maurice Pope "The Ancient Greeks - How they lived and worked" p 99-100)

Somewhere about 5000 BC the first Neolithic farmers to reach Italy arrived by sea from the other side of the Adriatic. ... The huts the newcomers set about building themselves had stone wall footings and beaten earth floors, far more sturdily constructed than the temporary shelters of the wandering hunters. One of the first tasks of the women was to find a local supply of clay to model into domestic pottery, a material too heavy and fragile for use in nomadic hunting camps. The men's stone axes had their flaking edges ground smooth. (David Trump "Central och southern Italy before Rome" p 30)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Gunnar Adolfsson, Alf Ahlberg, Lars Ahlberg, Karl D. Ahlner, Svetlana Aleksijevitj, Carl Allgén, Ann-Charlotte Alverfors, Sven Alverlin, Eric H. Anderek, Karl-Erik Andersson, Erika André, Martin Andrén, Nils Andrén, Karen Armstrong, Henrik Berg, UllaBritt Berglund, Torsten Bergsten, Elisabeth Beskow, Oloph Bexell, Ruth Bexell, Den heliga Birgitta, Margareta Björkman, Carl Gustaf Boëthius, Ezaline Boheman, Lars-Ola Borglid, Ingmar Brohed, Ingrid Böhn-Jullander, Tsitsi Chauke, Charlotte Christensen-Nugues, Anna-Maria Claesson, Annica Dahlström, Henry Daniel-Rops, Simone de Beauvoir, Charles Dickens, Assia Djebar, Allan Eddeland, Ylva Eggehorn, Allan Ellenius, Henrik Elmgren, Albert Engström, Linné Eriksson, David Estborn, Hjalmar Fernström, Arkadij Filin, Emilia Fogelklou, Elisabeth Fransson Malm, Rolf Fredriksson, Bo Frid, Otto Funcke, Mauritz Gagnerud, Arvid Gierow, Bo Giertz, Bengt Gierup, Johannes Gossner, Hillis Grane, Carl Grimberg, Ann-Sofie Gräslund, Jan Guillou, Lennart Gustavsson, Eva Haettner Aurelius, Johan Hagner, Joel Halldorf, Dick Harrison, Gustaf Hellström, Verner von Heidenstam, Mats Hellspong, Alf Henrikson, Marianne Herrlin, C.G. Hjelm, Erik Holmberg, Alf Härdelin, Yousuf Idris, Betty Janson, Letta Rudnicka Jaroszynska, Barbro Jern, Egil Johansson, Ingrid Johansson, Lennart Johansson, Eyvind Johnson, Eskil Jonsson, Ulrik Josefsson, Ihsan Kamal, M. Karlgren, Erik Kjellberg, Ad. Kolmodin, Margareta von Konow, Carl J. Kullenberg, Nils Kullgren, Elisabeth Kuylenstierna-Wenster, Inge Kvarnström, Ragni Lantz, Olle Larsson, Amy Le Feuvre, Märta Leijon, Harry Lenhammar, Sven Lidman, Johan Liliequist, Sigurd Lindgren, Ingeborg Lindqvist, Ulf Lundell, Martin Luther, David Magnusson, P.M. Mahlalela, Verner Malmsten, Harry Martinson, Carl Henrik Martling, Mo Yan, Vilhelm Moberg, Kjell Åke Modéer, Ingun Montgomery, Fabian Månsson, V.S. Naipul, Carl Erik Nordenskjöld, Hilding Nordström, J. Nyrén, N. Odenvik, Runa Ohlander, John Ongman, John Ortberg, Roland Oscarsson, J.G. Oxenstierna, Efraim Palmqvist, Jessica Parland-von Essen, Ingvar Parmestål, Lewi Pethrus, K.J. Pettersson, Hilding Pleijel, Gunnar Qvist, Efraim Rang, Harald Rasmussen, Einar Rimmerfors, Mia Rosander, Allan Rydén, Josef Rydén, Carl-Erik Sahlberg, Margit Sahlin, Vinay Samuel, Lina Sandell, Ernst Sandgren, J. Norberto Saracco, Karin Sarja, Letha Dawson Scanzoni, Sven-Åke Selander, Karin Sennefelt, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Henrik Sjögren, Harry Sjöman, Eyvor Skantze, Enock H. Skooglund, Erik Sollerman, Urban Stacke, Kekke Stadin, Rune Storck, John Stott, Chris Sugden, Jesper Svartvik, Alf B. Svensson, Edith Södergran, G.E. Söderholm, Lennart Tegborg, Einar Thomassen, David Trump, Anton Tjechov, John Törnquist, Nils Erik Villstrand, P. Waldenström, Hans von Waldhaus, Olof Wellmark, Gunnar Wetterberg, N.P. Wetterlund, Albert Wiberg, Magnus Widell, Gustaf Wikner, Yngve Ydreborg, Agne Ydrefelt, Göran Åberg, Eva Åsbrink, Hugo Öberg.


My own comments and speculations:

In her relation to Jesus the woman was femininly submissive. She calls Him "Lord". But after her conversation she pronounces to the people in the city the opinion that Jesus possibly can be the Christ. The people believes in her doubtful words (Jesus here is a man among men rather than the Man, cf. John 7:47-49, but He is nevertheless a man rather than a Jew, cf. John 4:9) and goes to Jesus. And the woman has regained her lost authority in her relation to the male.

The Man Jesus - both male and female - talks as natural with a male as with a female.

Compare the woman's leaving of her water-pot for the water of agelong life with Nathanael's leaving of the fig for the wine (John 1:48; 15:1). The pot of the woman is the seventh pot mentioned by John (cf. John 2:6). The woman leaves the last pot of the old time and hopes for the eighth pot of a new time, the period of the Spirit.

In the NT the expression “epi toutô” (on this) only occurs here in John 4:27 and in Acts 3:12. Furthermore observe the occurance of the words “wondered” and “woman” in John 4:27 and the words “males” and “wonder” in Acts 3:12.


Paul said: "(It is not possible to be) Jew (or) Greek ... male and female, for you are all of you * (א*) in Christ Jesus." (Gal 3:28b)


Greek words:

deute (come here; see also deuro John 11:43-44) (in the NT + examples in the OT) 2 Kings 6:19; Ps 66:16; Matt 11:28; 28:6; John 4:29 – Gen 11:3-4; 37:27; Joshua 10:4; 2 Kings 6:13; 10:16; 14:8; Ps 34:11(12); 95:6; Is 1:18; Matt 4:19; 21:38; 22:4; 25:34; Mark 1:17; 6:31; 12:7; Luke 18:22; 20:14(א,*א); John 21:12; Rev 19:17.

mentoi (nevertheless) (in the NT + one example in the OT) John 4:27 – Prov 5:4; John 7:13; 12:42; 21:4; 2 Tim 2:19; Jas 2:8; Jude v 8.

mêti (surely not) (in the NT) Matt 12:23; John 4:29 – Matt 7:16; 26:22,25; Mark 4:21; 14:19; Luke 6:39; 9:13; John 8:22; Acts 10:47; 1 Cor 7:5; 2 Cor 1:17; 12:18; 13:5; Jas 3:11.


Additional studies:

Matt 15:22-28; John 16:5,21; Rev 10:8; 17:6-7.


Ann L. Bowman "Women in Ministry: An Exegetical Study of 1 Timothy 2:11-15" Bibliotheca Sacra 154 (1997): 189-204.

Elizabeth Danna "A Note on John 4:29"; Révue Biblique 106 (1999): 219-223.

Andreas J. Köstenberger "Ascertaining Women's God-Ordained Roles: An Interpretation of 1 Timothy 2:15"; Bulletin for Biblical Research 7 (1997): 107-144.

I. Ljung "Tolkning av GT's utsagor om kvinnor"; Svensk Exegetisk Årsbok 49 (1984): 44-57.

Jerome H. Neyrey "What's Wrong With This Picture? John 4, Cultural Stereotypes of Women, and Public Private Space"; Biblical Theological Bulletin 24 (1994): 77-91.

S.J. Nortjé "The role of women in the fourth gospel"; Neotestamentica 20.1 (1986): 21-28.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-12; 2010-11-14; 2013-11-12; 2014-10-07)

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4:31-34 In between the disciples (continually/repeatedly) asked Him, saying: “Rabbi, eat.” But He spoke to them: “I have a consumption to eat, which you do not know.” The disciples said so (continually/repeatedly) towards one another: “Not has anyone carried (anything) to Him to eat?” Jesus says to them: “My food is ‘in order that’/that I might make/do the will of the One having sent Me and make His work perfect.”

Word for word: 4:31 (10 words in the Greek text) In the between asked-(continually) him the disciples saying: rabbi, eat. 4:32 (12 words in the Greek text) the-(one) but spoke (to)-them: i/I (a)-consumption have (to)-eat which you not 'know-(and-have-known)'/know. 4:33 (11 words in the Greek text) sade-(continually) so the disciples towards one-another: not anyone carried (to)-him (to)-eat? 4:34 (19 words in the Greek text) says (to)-them the Jesus: my food is in-order-to (i/I)-might-make the will (of)-the-(one) having-been-sent me and might-make-perfect his the work.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(Moses said to the synagogue/gathering:) "... You will gain knowledge that the Lord has dispatched me away to make/do all these works, because (these are) not from Myself." (Num 16:28, Greek OT)

(Moses said to Israel: "The Lord) treated you ill and let you famish and gave you the manna as morsels, which your fathers did not know, in order that He might bring up a message to you, that the man shall not alone/only live on/’for the sake of’ bread, however/but the man shall live on/’for the sake of’ every word going out through mouth of God." (Deut 8:3, Greek OT)

(David said to the Lord:) "I have wished the thing to make/do Your will, my God, and (to have) your law in a middle of my belly." (Ps 40:8 alt. 40:9, Greek OT)

(The form as a man said to the prophet:) ”Eat what I give you.” And I beheld, and behold, a hand being (and having been) stretched out towards me, and in it a ‘bed's head’/beginning of a scroll.” (Ezek 2:8b-9, Greek OT)


The Latter Revelation:

‘Having answered’/’(Jesus) answered’ and spoke (to the slanderer): "It is (and has been) written: ‘The man shall not live on/by bread alone/only however/but on/by every word going out through (the) mouth of God.’” (Matt 4:4)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "Happy the ones being hungry and thirsting (for) the righteousness, because they themselves will be fed." (Matt 5:6)

(Jesus said:) “Whoever – according to the circumstances – may make/do the will of My Father, the One in heavens, he is My brother and sister and mother.” (Matt 12:50)

(The disciples said to Jesus:) “’Loosen from’/dismiss so (א,* א) the crowds, in order that having gone away into the villages they may buy (articles of) food for themselves.” (Matt 14:15b)

Jesus spoke (to James and John and their mother): "You do not know what you demand. Are you able to drink the cup which I am about to drink?" (Matt 20:22a)

(The disciples) ‘counted throughout’/considered towards/with one another that/: "We (א,*א,A) have not (pieces of) bread." And having knowledge Jesus (א,*A) says to them: "Why do you ‘count throughout’/consider, that you have not breads/’pieces of bread’?" (Mark 8:16-17a)

(Jesus) (continually/repeatedly) said: "Abba, the Father, all things are able for You. Carry this cup from the side of, from Me. However/but not what I want, however/but what You (want)." (Mark 14:36)

Jesus (continually/repeatedly) said to (the crowds): “Let the one having two tunics 'give among them'/share to the one having not, and let the one having (articles of) food make/do likewise.” (Luke 3:11b)

(Jesus said to some Pharisees:) "Behold, I throw out little demons, and healings I end off today and (the) following day, and the third (day) I am made perfect." (Luke 13:32b)

Having stood up (the son) came towards his father. But on his still holding far off, his father beheld him and was moved in his inward vital parts. (Luke 15:20a)

(Abraham said to the rich man:) “In all these things a great chasm between us and you has been (and is) set fast, in that way (that) the ones wanting to step through/across ‘in from’/’from here’ towards you may not be able, ‘but not’/nor may (anyone) penetrate through from there towards us.” (Luke 16:26)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

(Jesus') disciples had gone (and went) away into/to the city, in order that they might/would buy nourishments/food. (John 4:8)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

In many places in the Gospel of John it returns that men in conversation with Jesus misunderstand him, and that this leads to deeper conversations. In the narrative about the visit of Jesus in Samaria there are two clear misunderstandings: the woman misunderstands the words of Jesus about living water, 4:10f, and the disciples misunderstand the words of Jesus about food, 4:32f. (LarsOlov Eriksson "För att ni skall tro. Johannesevangeliet" p 90; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Leo Baeck, Bo Frid, Irenaeus, Vilhelm Moberg, Jesper Svartvik, Helmut Thielicke.


My own comments and speculations:

To do God's will was something which was in a middle of David's belly. It was as food for him. And to do His Father's will also was Jesus' food. This work is made perfect in the unity of the disciples (John 17:23).


(Christ) has spoken (and speaks) (to His Father): "Behold, I have arrived to make/do Your will." ... In (this) will we are (and have been) made holy through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ ‘on once’/’once for all’ . (Heb 10:9a,10)


Greek words:

allêlôn (one another) (in the NT) Mark 8:16; John 4:33 – Matt 24:10; 25:32; Mark 4:41; 9:34,50; 15:31; Luke 2:15; 4:36; 6:11; 7:32; 12:1; 20:14; 23:12; 24:14,17,32; John 5:44; 6:43,52; 11:56; 13:14,22,34-35; 15:12,17; 16:17,19; 19:24. Acts 4:15; 7:26; 15:39; 19:38; 21:6; 26:31; 28:4,25; Rom 1:12,27; 2:15; 12:5,10,16; 13:8; 14:13,19; 15:5,7,14; 16:16; 1 Cor 7:5; 11:33; 12:25; 16:20; 2 Cor 13:12; Gal 5:13,15,17,26; 6:2. Eph 4:2,25,32; 5:21; Phil 2:3; Col 3:9,13; 1 Thess 3:12; 4:9,18; 5:11,15; 2 Thess 1:3; Tit 3:3; Heb 10:24; Jas 4:11; 5:9,16; 1 Pet 1:22; 4:9; 5:5,14; 1 John 1:7; 3:11,23; 4:7,11-12; 2 John v 5; Rev 6:4; 11:10.

brôma (food) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 14:15; Luke 3:11; John 4:34 – Judith 11:12; 1 Macc 1:63; 6:53; 9:52; 13:33; 14:10; 2 Macc 12:14; Sir 30:25; 36:18-19(20); 37:30; Bel and the Dragon v 11,13(14)(Theod); Mark 7:19; Luke 9:13; Rom 14:15,20; 1 Cor 3:2; 6:13; 8:8,13; 10:3; 1 Tim 4:3; Heb 9:10; 13:9.

brôsis (consumption) (in the NT + one example in the Apocrypha) John 4:32 – Wisdom of Solomon 4:5; Matt 6:19-20; John 6:27,55; Rom 14:17; 1 Cor 8:4; 2 Cor 9:10; Col 2:16; Heb 12:16.

esthiô (eat) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) John 4:31-33 – Esther 4:16,17x(C28); Tobit 1:8,10-11; 2:2,5,13; 7:10-11,14; 8:1,20; 12:19; Judith 11:12; 12:2,11,15,19; 1 Macc 1:62; 2 Macc 6:18; 7:7; Sir 11:19; 20:16(17); 24:21; 30:19; 31:16; 45:21; Baruch 2:3; Bel and the Dragon v 6(Theod),8,24,27,39; Matt 6:25,31; 9:11; 11:18-19; 12:1,4; 14:16,20-21; 15:2,20,27,32,37-38; 24:49; 25:35,42; 26:17,21,26; Mark 1:6; 2:16,26; 3:20; 5:43; 6:31,36-37,42,44; 7:2-5,28; 8:1-2,8; 11:14; 14:12,14,18,22; Luke 4:2; 5:30,33; 6:1,4; 7:33-34,36; 8:55; 9:13,17; 10:7-8; 12:19,22,29,45; 13:26; 14:1,15; 15:16,23; 17:8,27-28; 22:8,11,15,30; 24:43; John 6:5,23,26,31,49-53,58; 18:28. Acts 9:9; 10:13-14; 11:7; 23:12,21; 27:35; Rom 14:2-3,6,20-21,23; 1 Cor 8:7-8,10,13; 9:4,7,13; 10:3,7,18,25,27-28,31; 11:20-22,26-29,33-34; 15:32; 2 Thess 3:8,10,12; Heb 10:27; 13:10; Jas 5:3; Rev 2:7,14,20; 10:10; 17:16; 19:18.

metaxy (between) (in the NT) Luke 16:26; John 4:31 – Matt 18:15; 23:35; Luke 11:51; Acts 12:6; 13:42; 15:9; Rom 2:15.

teleioô (make perfect) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Luke 13:32; John 4:34 – Wisdom of Solomon 4:13; Sir 7:32; 31:10; 50:19; Luke 2:43; John 5:36; 17:4,23; Acts 20:24; Phil 3:12; Heb 2:10; 5:9; 7:19,28; 9:9; 10:1,14; 11:40; 12:23; Jak 2:22; 1 John 2:5; 4:12,17-18.


Additional studies:

2 Sam 17:29; Matt 15:11;16:7-8; 21:28-31; 23:7-8; 26:39,42; Mark 3:35; Luke 4:4; 22:42; John 5:30,36; 6:27,38; 9:4; 10:25,32,37-38; 14:10; 17:4; 19:28,30; 2 Cor 5:18; Eph 6:6; 1 John 2:17; Rev 3:18; 10:9-10.


Bengt Holmberg "Reciprocitetsnyanser i 'allêlôn'"; Svensk Exegetisk Årsbok 51 (1986): 90-99.

Andreas J. Köstenberger "Jesus as Rabbi in the Fourth Gospel"; Bulletin for Biblical Research 8 (1998): 97-128.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-13; 2010-11-18; 2013-11-13)

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4:35-36 Do you not say that/: “It/there is yet a space of four months, and/’and so’ the harvest comes?” Behold, I say to you, lift your eyes against and view the districts/fields, that they are white towards a harvest. Already the one harvesting takes wage and leads together fruit into/for agelong life, in order that and/both (א,* א, A) the one sowing and the one harvesting may rejoice together.

Word for word: 4:35 (28 words in the Greek text) not you say that yet (a)-space-of-four-months is and the harvest comes? behold (i/I)-say (to)-you lift-against the eyes your and view the districts that white (they)-are towards harvest. already 4:36 (19 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus) the-(one) harvesting wage takes and leads-together fruit into life eternal, in-order-that and/both the-(one) sowing together may-rejoice and the-(one) harvesting.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

Noah built a sacrificial altar to the Lord … and carried up wholly offerings of fruits against the sacrificial altar. And the Lord God smelled a scent of fragrance. (Gen 8:20-21a, Greek OT)

(Jacob said to Laban:) “My righteousness will ‘hear on’/’listen to’ me in/on the following day, because my wage is in the very eyes of you. Everyone that – if according to the circumstances - is not ... throughout white in/among the goats and blackish in/among the rams, (if found) by the side of me, it will be (considered) being (and having been) stolen.” (Gen 30:33, Greek OT)

(The chief cup-bearer said to Joseph:) “In my sleap a vine (continually) was opposite me, but in the vine (there were) three bottoms/roots. And on its sprouting it carried up sprouts (and) the bunches of 'grapes of grape'/grapes (were) ripe.” (Gen 40:9b-10, Greek OT)

(The locusts) veiled the sight/face of the earth, and the earth was ruined. And they ate down/up every herb of the earth/land and every fruit of the woods/trees which was left behind from/’away from’ the hail. (Ex 10:15a, Greek OT)

Against (the) face of the desolate (district) (there was something) thin, as if (it was) a white little eye-ball/girl, as if (it was) ice upon the earth. … white as seed/’a child’ of a litte eye-ball. (Ex 16:14b,31a, Greek OT)

Moses dispatched away (the twelve) to entirely contemplate the earth/land Canaan, and he spoke towards them: "... Behold the earth/land, what it is! ... What (is) the earth/land, if (it is) fat or ‘being by the side of’/lean? If it is trees in it or not? Having ‘been patient’/adhered to (it), take from the fruits of the earth/land.” And the days (were) days of spring, forerunners of a grape/'bunch of grapes'. (Num 13:17a,18a,20 or 13:18a,19a,21, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Israel:) “Six years you shall sow your earth, and you shall lead together its products.” (Ex 23:10, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to His people:) “Come here and we may ‘count throughout’/consider … if – according to the circumstances – your misses (of My mark) may be as crimson, I shall whiten (them) as snow, but/and if – according to the circumstances – they may be as scarlet, I shall whiten (them) as wool.” (Is 1:18, Greek OT)

(The prophet said to the Lord: “The people going in darkness) will be cheerful in the very eyes of you as the ones being cheerful in mowing. ...” (Is 9:3b, Greek OT)

(In the coming days) the (inhabited) world will be fulfilled of the fruit (of Jacob/Israel). (Is 27:6b, Greek OT)

(The Lord said:) "I will bring up a message about new things, and before 'the thing to stick'/'it sticks' up, it was manifested to you." (Is 42:9b, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Zion:) "Lift your eyes (in) a circle and behold all (your builders). They have been led together and have come towards you." (Is 49:18a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said:) “I, the Lord, (is the One letting) hearts (undergo tests) and proving kidneys (on the basis) of the thing to give to everyone according to his ways and according to the fruits of his pursuits.” (Jer 17:10, Greek OT)

"Behold, days come," says the Lord, "and/when the threshing-time will leave the gathering of fruits entirely/behind, and the grape will colour blue-black in the sowing, and the mountains will drip from sweetening/sweetness, and all the hills will be grown together." (Amos 9:13a, Greek OT)

(Tobit said:) “My eyes (continually) were made blind (with) the white-coloured things (in them). ...” (Tobit 2:10b, S)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “Come towards (wisdom) as the one ploughing and the one sowing. And ‘stay up’/await its good fruits, for in/with its occupation/work you bother a few and quickly you will eat its produces/products.” (Sir 6:19)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “In midday of (the sun) it dries up a district/field.” (Sir 43:3a)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “... An eye wonders much (at) whitest beauty of (the snow).” (Sir 43:18a)


The Latter Revelation:

(John the Baptist said: "The One who comes behind me) ... will lead together His bread-stuff into the granary." (Matt 3:12a)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) “You are not able to make one hair white or black.” (Matt 5:36b)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "The harvest (is) indeed much/many-headed, but the workers (are) few. Strive so after ‘in that way’/that the Lord of the harvest may throw/bring out workers into His harvest." (Matt 9:37-38; Luke 10:2)

Having lift against/up their eyes (Peter, James and John) beheld no one ‘if not’/except Him, Jesus alone. (Matt 17:8)

Having come to (his lord) the one having taken (and taking) the one talent spoke: "Lord, I had knowledge of you that you are a hard man, harvesting whereat/where you did not sow and leading together, from where you did not scatter asunder." (Matt 25:24)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) “Learn the parable from the fig tree: ‘When – according to the circumstances – its branch already may become tender and may produce the leaves out of (it), you have knowledge that the summer is near.” (Mark 13:28)

(Jesus said to the seventy disciples:) “Stay in the habitation (you have come into) eating and drinking the things from the side of them, for the worker (is) worthy of his wage.” (Luke 10:7a)

(Jesus) spoke/told a parable towards (the crowd) saying: “The district/field of certain rich (man) bore good fruit.” (Luke 12:16)

(Having found his sheep the man) calls together the friends and the neighbourings, saying to them: “Rejoice together with me, because I have found my sheep, the one 'perishing (and having perished)'/'being (and having been) lost'.” (Luke 15:6b)

(On the disciples') seeing (Jesus) He was lifted against/up and a cloud took Him from below, from their eyes. (Acts 1:9b)

In the 'to be completed'/'completing of' the day of the 50th * (א*) (the disciples) (continually) were together against/by the same (place). (Acts 2:1)

It became ... a great pursuit against (the members of the assembly) of called out in (a disgraced) Jerosolyma/Jerusalem. * (א*) All, ‘more than’/except the apostles, were sown asunder ‘according to’/downwards the districts of Judea and Samaria. (Acts 8:1b)

On Peter's still talking these words the Holy Spirit fell against, against all the ones hearing the saying. (Acts 10:44)

‘Every the’/’the whole’ city were led together to hear the saying of the Lord. (Acts 13:44b)

(Barnabas and Paul said to the crowds:) “And yet (God) did not let Himself be without witness (in) doing good, giving rain to you from heaven and seasonable fruit-bearing times, fulfilling your hearts with nourishment and cheerfulness.” (Acts 14:17)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 - about 1500

There is evidence ... that the agricultural year (in Palestine) was divided in 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. ... There is support for this also in the Gezer Calendar, our oldest Hebrew inscription. Between its "Two months of sowing" and its month for the general harvest it has "Two months of late sowing (or spring growth). Month of pulling flax. Month of barley harvest." ... H.V. Morton tells of an incident at this spot: "as I sat by Jacob's Well a crowd of Arabs came along the road from the direction in which Jesus was looking, and I saw their white garments shining in the sun. Surely Jesus was speaking not of the earthly but of the heavenly harvest, and as He spoke I think it likely that He pointed along the road where the Samaritans in their white robes were assembling to hear His words." (Leon Morris "The Gospel according to John" p 246-247)

Josephus says that the Israelites first thought manna was snow. (Michael E. Williams “Exodus-Joshua” p 71; Plaut p 504)

Jesus says: "'See', how the fields already have whitened to harvest." The meaning is: Note carefully how the fields look like! (Studiebibeln V:498; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Mother had promised to accompany Lisabet to town and buy a schoolbag and a pencil-case to her. Such an important thing one cannot wait with up to the last minute. It is true that Lisabet is not to begin school before four months. But she has been and become inscribed, certainly she already is almost as a schoolgirl. And that schoolbag she has yearned for so long. (Astrid Lindgren "Madicken och Junibackens Pims" p 234; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

"It is unjust", Pippi rigorously said. . . . "It is absolutely unjust!" . . . "What do you mean", Tommy wondered. "In four months it is Christmas, and then you have Christmas holidays. But I, what do I receive? . . . Not Christmas holidays, not the very least Christmas holidays. . . . Here it must come to a change. Tomorrow I go to school." Tommy and Annika clapped their hands of enchantment. "Hurrah! Then we wait for you outside our door at eight o'clock." (Astrid Lindgren "Pippi Långstrump" p 48-49; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

In the provisions concerning the year of jubilee a particular grace appeared to God's Israel. It was a levelling and an improvement of almost all social conditions. All slaves were set free in the beginning of the year of jubilee, all debts were remitted, and all property, whether sold or pledged, returned to the original owner or its rightful heir. The earth itself enjoyed an uniterrupted rest of one or really two year, untouched of spade, pick and plough. Of this the harvest, it is true, did not come off for all three years, for the forty-ninth year was just the usual sabbatical or holy year, when nothing was allowed to be sown or harvested. The fiftieth year was just the free year or year of jubilee, when nothing either was sown or harvested. No famine was yet to fear. God intervened by letting the earth in the forty-eighth year give such a rich crop, that it was enough even for the following three years. As it expressly is said in the ordinance about the year of jubilee (Leviticus chapter 25). I will order My blessing for you in the the forty-eighth (literally: sixth) year that it will bring forth the crop for three years. When you are sowing the fifty-first (literally: ninth) year, you can still eat old things from the crop. (Karl Palmberg "Ur livskällan. Andra årgången." p 6; comment to Luke 4:16-22; Karl Palmberg /1842-1920/ was from 1883 a Lutheran clergyman in Månsarp in the diocese of Växjö and president in Jönköpings Missionsförening (Missionary Society) 1886-1911; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

A state of the people has to stand on firm foundation: it is the earth! It seems barren, for it demands work. But the work of the farmer is sound and beautiful; and although he has to go without the pleasures of the arts, he has the beauty of nature free, and when he owns the originals he needs not the imitations. His summer work is heavy, but he honours the heaviest labours as a festival: the one of the haymaking and the harvest, when he also through the need of help is allowed to develope his talent for solidarity and learn that the dependence between fellow-beings is mutual. (August Strindberg "Folkstaten" p 141; Aftontidningen 1910-09-16; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

Wherefore instead of calling (the people from the city) “fields” and “harvest”, did (Jesus) not plainly say, that “the men were coming to believe and were ready to receive the Word … and now bringing forth fruit”? What mean these figures used by Him? For this He doth not here only but through all the Gospel. And the Prophets also employ the same method, saying many things in a metaphorical manner. … On two accounts; one, that the discourse may be more vivid, and bring what is said more clearly before our eyes. … The other is, that the statement may be sweetened, and that the memory of what is said may be more lasting. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:119)

God ... made the things of time for man, so that coming to maturity in them, he may produce the fruit of immortality. (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 466)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Samuel Josef Agnon, Eric Axelsson, Leo Baeck, K.A. Berg, Carl Boberg, Nils Bolander, Lars-Ola Borglid, Gordon Bridger, Ingmar Brohed, Åke Campbell, Henry Daniel-Rops, Emilie Flygare-Carlén, Bo Frid, Carl Grimberg, Torsten Gårdlund, Dick Harrison, Alf Henrikson, Homeros, Zinaida Jevdokimovna Kovalenka, K.W. Johansson, Eskil Jonsson, Ragnar Järhult, Erik Axel Karlfeldt, Rudyard Kipling, C.S. Lewis, Martin Luther, Vilhelm Moberg, Arthur Montgomery, Sigurd Ohlsson, Johan Ludvig Runeberg, Viktor Rydberg, Bo Setterlind, Jesper Svartvik, Wislawa Szymborska, Rabindranath Tagore, Anton Tjechov, Emil Zilliacus, Carl Fr. Wislöff.


My own comments and speculations:

In a restoration perspective the ruined and dark land in Egypt becomes white, and the eaten fruit is gathered for an agelong life. In this perspective we also see how the eradicated sower and harvester in Jer 50:16 now are restored.

Concerning the period of four months we know that the Qumran sect reckoned the time between the germination of the seed and the harvest to be four months (cf. Bultmann p 196). So when the disciples saw the new crop just coming up from the black fields, they knew that it was four months to the harvest. Compare also the Targum to Gen 49:10 where it is said that the valleys of Messiah will be white of crop. However, it can be so that the white fields rather speak about scarlet fields being washed white in the blood of the Saviour (cf. Is 1:18, John 4:42, Rev 7:14) than about the harvest/fruit belonging to the wine Jesus (John 15). The fields are described as white "towards (Greek "pros" with accusative) a harvest, not to be white "of" or "on account of" harvest/fruit. The white cleanness of the fields makes it possible to bear the fruit belonging to the age of the Spirit. Both Jesus' atoning death of the cross and the fruit of the Spirit can at the same time be seen as something coming and as something already being present. Compare John 4:23: "However, an hour comes, and it is now, when the true 'prostrators' will prostrate themselves before the Father (in honour of Him) in spirit and truth."

A possible background to John 4:35-38 is Acts 8:4-25. Philip comes to Samaria and is sowing by preaching Christ. The fields become white when people are baptized in water for forgiveness of their sins. After that Peter and John come and harvest a blessing of a new age by conferring holy spirit. They return to Jerusalem, where Philip is. So the one having sown and the ones having harvested can rejoice together. Compare Raymond E. Brown "The Gospel according to John" p 184.

The likeness between Greek words in the first chapters of Tobit and here in John 4:35-36 is striking. Cf. eti (Tobit 3:15; John 4:35), leukôma/leukos (Tobit 2:10; 3:17; John 4:35), misthos (Tobit 2:12,24; John 4:36), ofthalmos (Tobit 2:10; 3:12,17; John 4:35) and chôra (Tobit 1:4; John 4:35). Furthermore we can compare thermos (warm in Tobit 2:10) with therismos (harvest in John 4:35) and ‘etê tessara’ (four years in Tobit 2:10) with tetramênos (four months in John 4:35).

In the NT the Greek word “homou” (together), except in the Gospel of John, only occurs in Acts 2:1, which tells about how the disciples were together on the day of Pentecost. It is possible, that “homou” for John is a designation for the mutual community of the Christians, where one sows by giving, while another harvests by receiving. Cf. also My own comments and speculations to John 4:37-38.


Paul said the believers in Rome: "I have many times put before to come ‘towards you’/’your way’ ... in order that I might have some fruit and/also in/among you entirely as and/also in/among the rest of the nations." (Rom 1:13b)

(These things we write) on account of the Saying of the life, what (continually) was from a beginning, what we have heard (and hear), what our eyes have beheld (and behold), what we viewed and (what) our hands felt (on). (1 John 1:1)


Greek words:

epairô (lift upon-on-against) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 17:8; John 4:35; Acts 1:9 – Esther 3:13b(B2); 1 Macc 2:63; 8:5; 10:70; Sir 11:4; 32:1; 36:2(3); 47:4; 48:18; 50:20. Luke 6:20; 11:27; 16:23; 18:13; 21:28; 24:50; John 6:5; 13:18; 17:1. Acts 2:14; 14:11; 22:22; 27:40; 2 Cor 10:5; 11:20; 1 Tim 2:8.

eti (yet/yet-any longer/still), mêketi (no longer), ouketi (no longer) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha)

eti (yet/yet longer/still) John 4:35; Acts 10:44 – Tobit 3:15; Judith 15:2; 2 Macc 3:37; 6:4; Matt 5:13; 12:46; 17:5; 18:16; 19:20; 26:47,65; 27:63; Mark 5:35; 12:6; 14:43,63; Luke 1:15; 8:49; 9:42; 14:22,26,32; 15:20; 16:2; 18:22; 20:36; 22:47,60,71; 24:6,41,44; John 7:33; 11:30; 12:35; 13:33; 14:19; 16:12; 20:1. Acts 2:26; 9:1; 18:18; 21:28; Rom 3:7; 5:6,8; 6:2; 9:19; 1 Cor 3:2-3; 12:31; 15:17; 2 Cor 1:10; Gal 1:10; 5:11; Phil 1:9; 2 Thess 2:5; Heb 7:10-11,15; 8:12; 9:8; 10:2,17,37; 11:4,32,36; 12:26-27; Rev 6:11; 9:12; 12:8; 18:21-23; 20:3; 21:1,4; 22:5,11.

mêketi (no longer/not any longer) Tobit 5:10; 14:9(BA); 1 Macc 13:39; 2 Macc 4:14; 10:4; Sir 21:1; Matt 21:19; Mark 1:45; 2:2; 9:25; 11:14; Luke 8:49; John 5:14; (8:11); Acts 4:17; 13:34; 25:24. Rom 6:6; 14:13; 15:23; 2 Cor 5:15; Eph 4:14,17,28; 1 Thess 3:1,5; 1 Tim 5:23; 1 Pet 4:2.

ouketi (no longer/not any longer) Tobit 1:15; 2:8; 10:4; 12:21; 13:6; Matt 19:6; 22:46; Mark 5:3; 7:12; 9:8; 10:8; 12:34; 15:5; Luke 15:19,21; 20:40; John 4:42; 6:66; 11:54; 14:19,30; 15:15; 16:10,16,21,25; 17:11; 21:6. Acts 8:39; 20:25,38; Rom 6:9; 7:17,20; 11:6; 14:15; 2 Cor 1:23; 5:16; Gal 2:20; 3:18,25; 4:7; Eph 2:19; Philemon v 16; Heb 10:18,26; Rev 10:6; 18:11,14.

therizô (harvest) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 25:24; John 4:36 – Judith 4:5; Sir 7:3; Matt 6:26; 25:26; Luke 12:24; 19:21-22; John 4:37-38; 1 Cor 9:11; 2 Cor 9:6; Gal 6:7-9; Jas 5:4; Rev 14:15-16.

therismos (harvest) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 9:37-38; Luke 10:2; John 4:35 – Judith 8:2; Sir 24:26; Matt 13:30; Mark 4:29; Rev 14:15.

karpos (fruit) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Sir 6:19; Matt 13:26; John 4:36 – 1 Macc 10:30; 14:8; Wisdom of Solomon 3:13,15; 4:5; 16:22; Sir 1:16; 6:3; 23:25; 24:17; 27:6; 37:23; 50:10; Matt 3:8,10; 7:16-20; 12:33; 13:8; 21:19,34,41,43; Mark 4:7-8,29; 11:14; 12:2; Luke 1:42; 3:8-9; 6:43-44; 8:8; 12:17; 13:6-7,9; 20:10; John 12:24; 15:2,4-5,8,16. Acts 2:30; Rom 1:13; 6:21-22; 15:28; 1 Cor 9:7; Gal 5:22; Eph 5:9; Phil 1:11,22; 4:17; 2 Tim 2:6; Heb 12:11; 13:15; Jas 3:17-18; 5:7,18; Rev 22:2.

leukos (white) (in the NT + examples in the OT) Ex 16:31; Matt 5:36; John 4:35 – Gen 30:35; Lev 13:3-4; Eccl 9:8; Dan 7:9; 2 Macc 11:8; Sir 43:18; Matt 17:2; 28:3; Mark 9:3; 16:5; Luke 9:29; John 20:12; Acts 1:10; Rev 1:14; 2:17; 3:4-5,18; 4:4; 6:2,11; 7:9,13; 14:14; 19:11,14; 20:11.

misthos (wage) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Luke 10:7; John 4:36 – Tobit 2:12,14; 4:14(BA); 5:3,7,10,15-16; 12:1,3; 2 Macc 8:33; Wisdom of Solomon 2:22; 5:15; 10:17; Sir 2:8; 11:18,22; 34:22(27); 36:15(18); 51:30; Matt 5:12,46; 6:1-2,5,16; 10:41-42; 20:8; Mark 9:41; Luke 6:23,35; Acts 1:18; Rom 4:4; 1 Cor 3:8,14; 9:17-18; Jas 5:4; 2 Pet 2:13,15; 2 John v 8; Jude v 11; Rev 11:18; 22:12.

(h)omou (together) (in the NT) John 4:36; Acts 2:1 – John 20:4; 21:2. (The word also occurs in the OT, for instance in Job 34:29. See also My own comments and speculations.)

ofthalmos (eye) (in the Synoptics, John, the Acts, 1-3 John, Rev + examples in the Apocrypha) Tobit 2:10; Sir 43:18; Matt 17:8; John 4:35; Acts 1:9 – Tobit 3:12,17; 4:16; 5:21; 6:9; 10:5; 11:7-8,11; 14:2; Judith 7:27; 10:4; 16:9; 1 Macc 2:23; 5:30; 2 Macc 8:17; Wisdom of Solomon 3:2; 9:9; Sir 4:1,5; 9:8; 12:16; 14:8-10; 15:19; 17:6,8,15,19; 20:14; 22:19; 23:4,19; 26:9,11; 27:1,22; 31:13; 34:16-17(19-20); 35:7(10),9(12); 38:28; 39:19; 40:22; 43:4; Baruch 1:12,22; 2:17; 3:14; Epistle of Jeremiah v 16; Susanna v 9; Matt 5:29,38; 6:22-23; 7:3-5; 9:29-30; 13:15-16; 18:9; 20:15,33; 21:42; 26:43; Mark 7:22; 8:18,25; 9:47; 12:11; 14:40; Luke 2:30; 4:20; 6:20,41-42; 10:23; 11:34; 16:23; 18:13; 19:42; 24:16,31; John 6:5; 9:6,10-11,14-15,17,21,26,30,32; 10:21; 11:37,41; 12:40; 17:1. Acts 9:8,18,40; 26:18; 28:27; 1 John 1:1; 2:11,16; Rev 1:7,14; 2:18; 3:18; 4:6,8; 5:6; 7:17; 19:12; 21:4.

speirô (sow) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Sir 6:19; Matt 25:24; John 4:36 – Sir 7:3; Matt 6:26; 13:3-4,18-20,22-24,27,31,37,39; 25:26; Mark 4:3-4,14-16,18,20,31-32; Luke 8:5; 12:24; 19:21-22; John 4:37; 1 Cor 9:11; 15:36-37,42-44; 2 Cor 9:6,10; Gal 6:7-8; Jas 3:18.

synagô (lead together) (in the NT + examples in the OT) Ex 23:10; Matt 3:12; 25:24; John 4:36; Acts 13:44 - Gen 29:8,22; 34:30; Ex 3:16; Lev 25:3; Deut 22:2; 33:5; Joshua 10:6; Judges 19:18; 1 Sam 5:11; 2 Sam 11:27; Esther 2:8; 9:15,18; Ps 2:2; Is 66:18; Hos 10:10; Micah 2:12; Tobit 13:5(BA),13(15)(BA); 1 Macc 1:4,35; 2:42; 3:9-10,27,46,52; 4:37; 5:37,45; 6:20,28; 7:22; 9:7,63; 10:2,6,8,21,48,69; 11:20; 12:37; 13:1,6,10; 14:1; 2 Macc 2:7; 8:1,16; 10:21; 14:23; Sir 13:16; 14:4; 21:8-9; 36:10(13); 47:18; Baruch 4:37; 5:5; Matt 2:4; 6:26; 12:30; 13:2,30,47; 18:20; 22:10,34,41; 24:28; 25:26,32,35,38,43; 26:3,57; 27:17,27,62; 28:12; Mark 2:2; 4:1; 5:21; 6:30; 7:1; Luke 3:17; 11:23; 12:17-18; 15:13; 22:66; John 6:12-13; 11:47,52; 15:6; 18:2; Acts 4:5,26-27,31; 11:26; 14:27; 15:6,30; 20:7-8; 1 Cor 5:4; Rev 16:14,16; 19:17,19; 20:8.

tetramênos (space of four months) John 4:35 – Judges 19:2(A); 20:47(A).

chôra (district) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Sir 43:3; Luke 12:16; John 4:35; Acts 8:1 – Esther 1:1,22; 2:3; 3:13a(B1),14; 4:3; 8:9,12x(E24),17; 9:19,27(28); Tobit 1:4; 1 Macc 1:4; 3:31,37; 6:1; 7:7,20,24; 8:3,8; 9:24-25,53,61,65; 10:52; 11:62; 12:25,32; 13:20,34,49; 14:6,17,28-29,31,36-37,42-44; 15:4,6,15,19,21,23,35; 16:4,13-14,18; 2 Macc 2:21; 9:24; 14:2,9; Sir 10:16; Epistle of Jeremiah v 12(13),60,71; Matt 2:12; 4:16; 8:28; Mark 1:5; 5:1,10; 6:55; Luke 2:8; 3:1; 4:14(א,*א); Luke 8:26; 15:13-15; 19:12; 21:21; John 11:54-55. Acts 10:39; 12:20; 13:49; 16:6; 18:23; 26:20; 27:27; Jas 5:4.


Additional studies: Deut 16:13-14; Ps 126:5-6; Is 9:2; 29:17; 60:4; Jer 50:16; Luke 21:30; John 4:14; 13:34-35; 15:11-12,16-17; 1 John 4:3; Rev 4:6; 11:18; 14:15-20; 22:2.

Peter W. Ensor "The Authenticity of John 4.35"; The Evangelical Quarterly 72.1 (Jan.-Mar. 2000): 13-21.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-13; 2010-11-22; 2013-11-18; 2014-10-07)

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4:37-38 For in this the saying is the (P66,א,* א, A) true one that/: ‘Another/one is the one sowing and another the one harvesting.’ I have dispatched (and dispatch) (א,*א) you away to harvest (for) what you have not bothered (and do not bother). Others have bothered (and bother), and you have come (and come) into their bother.

Word for word: 4:37 (17 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus) in for this the saying is the true that another is the sowing and another the harvesting. 4:38 (17 words in the Greek text) i/I have-dispatched-(and-dispatch)-away you (to)-harvest (for)-what not you have-had-bothered-(and-bother); others have-bothered-(and-bother) and you into the bother their have-come-(and come)-into.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(The Lord said to Cain: "Your) works (concerning) the earth, it will not ‘put to’/add its stability/ability to give you (harvest).” (Gen 4:12a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Israel: “If) you may disobey (My commands) and (if) your soul may be indignant My judicial verdicts ... you shall sow your seed ‘through emptiness’/’in vain’, and your adversaries shall eat (it)." (Lev 26:15a,16b, Greek OT)

(Moses said to Israel:) “It will be, when the Lord, your God may – according to the circumstances – lead you into, into the earth/land which He swore to your fathers, Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, to give you great and fine cities which you had not built, houses filled with all good things which you had ‘made full in’/filled, dens being (and having been) hewn, which you had not hewn out, vineyards and olive-gardens, which you had not planted down." (Deut 6:10-11a, Greek OT)

(Job said to God:) "If my foot has ‘lent out’/’bent aside’ out of/from the way, but/and if my heart and/also has followed on/after the eye, but/and if a gift and/also has touched my hands, let me consequently sow and others eat." (Job 31:7-8a, Greek OT)

(The psalmist said: “The Lord) gave (His people) districts of nations, and they inherited (the fruit of) hardships of peoples.” (Ps 105:44, Greek OT)

(The Lord said Jerusalem:) "I shall begin the thing to hit you (and) make you unseen/disfigured on/'for the sake of' your misses (of My mark). ... You shall sow and you may not/certainly not mow, you shall press an olive-tree and you may not/certainly not besmear olive-oil, and you may not/certainly not drink wine!" (Micah 6:13,15a, Greek OT)

(Solomon said to the Lord:) “May (the wisdom) bother, being together (with me) by the side of me. …” (Wisdom of Solomon 9:10b)

(Solomon said: “Wisdom) gave back/away to pious ones wage of their bothers.” (Wisdom of Solomon 10:17a)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “Shall you not entirely leave your hardships to ‘the other’/’your friend’ and your bothers into a division of a share of inheritance?” (Sir 14:15)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “Behold in/with your eyes, that I have bothered few/little, and I have found to myself much rest.” (Sir 51:27)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said:) "Come here towards Me, all being bothered and being (and having been) burdened, and I will bring you to rest.” (Matt 11:28)

Having coming out around a third hour (the master of the house) beheld others standing idle in the market-place. And he spoke to those: “Withdraw and/also you into my (א,* א) vineyard.” ... Around the eleventh (hour) coming out he found others standing (idle) ... He says to them: “Withdraw and/also you into the vineyard.” (Matt 20:3-4a,6a,7b)

Having come to (Jesus) the one having taken (and taking) the one talent spoke: "Lord, I had knowledge of you that you are a hard man, harvesting whereat/where you did not sow and leading together from where you did not scatter asunder." (Matt 25:24)

(The judge spoke in himself:) “At any rate 'because of'/because this widow 'to offer'/gives me bother, I will procure justice for her ….” (Luke 18:5)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

Jesus, bothering (and having bothered) ‘out of’/’in consequence of’ the way of the journey, sat ‘in this way’/so (continually) still on the spring. ... (John 4:6b)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 - about 1500

Jesus suggests that the harvest which the future disciples will get in Samaria – and which it is told of in Acts 8 – really goes back to Jesus' own mission work. (René Kieffer "Johannesevangeliet" p 117, translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

(The Greek word for "bother") originally means "to become tired", "to endure hardships" but is then used of tiring work, particularly of the countryman's work. (Rudolf Bultmann "The Gospel of John" p 199)

I weave and the Others tear to rags; I work and the Others harvest; is this to live for oneself? Or is it even to live? (August Strindberg "August Strindbergs brev XI maj 1895-nov 1896" p 327; letter 1896-09-17 to Torsten Hedlund; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

(Jesus showeth) that there was a very intimate connection between the New Covenant and the Old, and all this He effecteth at once by this parable. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:120)

(Jesus Christ) has gathered into one, and united those that were far off and those that were near; that is, the circumcision and the uncircumcision, enlarging Japhet, and placing him in the dwelling of Shem. ... For it is truly “one God who” directed the patriarchs towards His dispensations, and “has justified the circumcision by faith, and the uncircumcision through faith.” For as in the first we were prefigured, so, on the other hand, are they represented in us, that is, in the Church, and receive the recompense for those things which they accomplished. ... Who, then, are they that have laboured and have helped forward the dispensations of God? It is clear that they are the patriarchs and prophets, who even prefigured our faith, and disseminated through the earth the advent of the Son of God, who and what He should be: so that posterity, possessing the fear of God, might easily accept the advent of Christ, having been instructed by the prophets. ... Although Abraham was one, he did in himself prefigure the two covenants, in which some indeed have sown, while others have reaped; for it is said: “In this is the saying true, that it is one ‘people’ who sows, but another who shall reap;” but it is one God who bestows things suitable upon both – seed to the sower, but bread for the reaper to eat. ... For the patriarchs and prophets sowed the word (concerning) Christ, but the Church reaped, that is, received the fruit. (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 418,494,496)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Bo Frid, Johannes Gossner, Lennart Gustavsson, Nils Herlitz, Eric Hertz, Jesper Svartvik, Paul Wern.


My own comments and speculations:

In a restoration perspective Cain, who tilled the ground without being able to harvest, now is restored by the disciples' being allowed to harvest without having sown. And the people of Israel and the nations are allowed to rejoice together (cf. Deut 6:10-11, Ps 105:44 and John 4:36).

The pains of a disciple can be easy, for the yoke of Jesus is beneficial (Matt 11:30). And Jesus said: “The one who – according to the circumstances – may give to one of these small ones (following Me) only a cup of cold (water) to drink, into/’for the purpose of’ a name of a disciple, amen, I say to you, he may not/certainly not perish/lose his wage.” (Matt 10:42). Consequently it is possible to describe the pains of a disciple as bothers.


Greek words:

allos (another) (in the NT + examples in the OT) Matt 20:3,6; John 4:37-38 – Gen 19:12; Ex 8:10; 1 Sam 14:4; 1 Kings 13:10; Is 45:21; Tobit 8:21; 1 Macc 13:39; Matt 2:12; 4:21; 5:39; 8:9; 12:13; 13:5,7-8,24,31,33; 16:14; 19:9; 21:8,33,36,41; 22:4; 25:16-17,20,22; 26:71; 27:42,49(א,*א,B),61; 28:1; Mark 4:5,7-8,18,36; 6:15; 7:4; 8:28; 10:11-12; 11:8; 12:4-5,9,31-32; 14:58; 15:31,41; Luke 5:29; 6:29; 7:8,19-20; 9:8,19; 20:16; 22:59; 23:35; John 5:7,32,43; 6:22-23; 7:12,41; 9:9,16; 10:16,21; 12:29; 14:16; 15:24; 18:15-16,34, 19:18,32; 20:2-3,8,25,30; 21:2,8,18. Acts 2:12; 4:12; 15:2; 19:32; 21:34; 1 Cor 1:16; 3:10-11; 9:2,12,27; 10:29; 12:8-10; 14:19,29-30; 15:39,41; 2 Cor 1:13; 8:13; 11:4,8; Gal 1:7; 5:10; Phil 3:4; 1 Thess 2:6; Heb 4:8; 11:35; Jas 5:12; Rev 2:24; 6:4; 7:2; 8:3; 10:1; 12:3; 13:11; 14:8-9,15,17-18; 15:1; 17:10; 18:1,4; 19:17(א,*א); Rev 20:12.

kopos (bother) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Wisdom of Solomon 10:17; Sir 14:15; Luke 18:5; John 4:38 – 1 Macc 10:15; Wisdom of Solomon 3:11; Sir 13:26; 22:13; 29:4; 34:23(28); Matt 26:10; Mark 14:6; Luke 11:7; 1 Cor 3:8; 15:58: 2 Cor 6:5; 10:15; 11:23,27; Gal 6:17; 1 Thess 1:3; 2:9; 3:5; 2 Thess 3:8; Rev 2:2; 14:13.


Additional studies: Deut 20:6; 28:30; Amos 9:13; Matt 25:25-26; Luke 19:21-22; Acts 8:4-8; 1 Cor 15:10; Gal 4:11; 1 Thess 5:12-13; Rev 14:15-20.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-14; 2010-11-23; 2013-11-21; 2014-10-08)

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4:39-42 But ‘out of’/from that city many of the Samaritans believed * (א*) because of the saying of the woman ‘being a’/bearing witness that/: “He spoke (to) me all things which I have made/done.” As/when the Samaritans so came towards Him, they (continually/repeatedly) asked Him to stay by the side of them. And He stayed there two days. And many more believed because of His saying. Both/furthermore they (continually/repeatedly) said to the woman that/: “We do not any longer believe because of your evidence (א*), for ourselves we have heard (and hear) and we know, that this One truly is the Saviour of the adornment/’adorned world’.”

Word for word: 4:39 (21 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) Out-of but the city that many believed (of)-the (of)-Samaritans because-of the saying (of)-the (of)-woman being-a-witness that (he)-spoke (to)-me all-things which (i/I)-made. 4:40 (17 words in the Greek text) as so came towards him the Samaritans (they)-asked-(continually) him (to)-stay by-the-side-of them; and (he)-stayed there two days. 4:41 (8 words in the Greek text) and (to)-much/many more-(ones) believed because-of the saying his. 4:42 (24 words in the Greek text) (to)-the both/furthermore woman (they)-said-(continually) that not-any-longer because-of the your evidence (we)-believe (we-our)selves for (we)-have-heard-(and-hear) and (we)-'know-(and-have-known)'/know that this-(one) is truly the saviour (of)-the (of)-world.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

Having come to/forward Jacob rolled away the stone from the mouth of the well and gave the sheep of Laban, his mother's brother, to drink. And (he) ‘was friends with’/kissed Rachel and ... wept. ... (And Rachel ran and) brought away a message to her father ... . As Laban heard the name of Jacob, his sister's son, he ran into a meeting (with) him and having ‘taken him around’/’embraced him’, he ‘was friends with’/kissed him and led him into his house. And (Jacob) described all these sayings for Laban. And Laban spoke to him: "You are out of my bones and out of my flesh!" And he (continually) was in company with him a month of days. (Gen 29:10b-11,12b-14, Greek OT)

(Simeon and Levi) securely came into, into the city (of Shechem) and killed every male. Both Hamor and his son Shechem they killed. (Gen 34:25b-26a, Greek OT)

(The sons of Israel burned) all the cities (of the Midianites). (Num 31:10a, Greek OT)

'Nations nations'/'all nations' (continually) were making their gods and put them in a house of the high (places), which the Samaritans had made. (2 Kings 17:29a, Greek OT)

(The psalmist said to the Lord:) “Propitiation is by the side of You.” (Ps 130:4, Greek OT)

(Daughter of Zion), behold, your king comes to you, righteous and He Himself saving/saves ... (Zech 9:9b, Greek OT)

(Israel said about Judas:) “How has/’has ... not’ 'an able one saving'/'one able to save' Israel.” (1 Macc 9:21)

(The king soiled ... the temple) in/on Gerizim ‘to name towards (the) brilliant one’/’and named it to Zeus’, (the one) of hospitality. (2 Macc 6:2a)

(Solomon said:) “A hope of a wicked one (is) ... as (the) mention of a ‘loosener up (of luggage)’/guest (who) went from the side of a way only one day.” (Wisdom of Solomon 5:14)

(Solomon said:) “A multitude of wise (ones is) a saving of an adornment/’adorned world.” (Wisdom of Solomon 6:24a)

(Solomon said: “With) the wisdom (the ones who were upon the earth) were saved.” (Wisdom of Solomon 9:18b)

(Solomon said:) "The one having turned himself next to (the serpent) (continually) was saved, not because of the thing to be looked at, however/but because of You, the Saviour of all." (Wisdom of Solomon 16:7)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “A friend is a companion of tables, and/but he may not/certainly not stay by the side of (you) in your day of oppression.” (Sir 6:10)


The Latter Revelation:

Having suddenly seen round about (the disciples) did not any longer behold ‘no one’/anyone ‘if not’/except (א,* א) Jesus alone in company with themselves. (Mark 9:8)

(Mary said:) "My spirit exulted on/’for the sake of’ God, my Saviour." (Luke 1:47)

Every/all flesh will behold the means of saving of God. (Luke 3:6)

(Jesus) dispatched away messengers before His face. Having gone they came into, into a city (א*) of Samaritans as/to make ready for (Jesus). (Luke 9:52b)

Having beheld (that the Samaritans did not receive Jesus) the disciples James and John spoke: "Lord, do You want, we may speak/bid fire to descend from the heaven and use them up?" But having turned Himself He blamed them. (Luke 9:54-55)

(One of ten) fell/’fell down’ against/on (the) face to the side of (Jesus') feet, being thankful to Him. And he (continually) was a Samaritan. (Luke 17:16)

These words (of the women) ‘were brought’/came to light in the very eyes of (the eleven), as if (they were) an idle tale, and they (continually) did not believe (in) them (= the women). (Luke 24:11)

... Samaria had received (and received) the saying of God. ... Having descended (to Samaria Peter and John) prayed on account of (the Samaritans), in that way that they might take holy spirit. For nor yet it ‘was (continually) falling (and having fallen)’/’fell (and had not fallen)’ upon them, not on anyone, but being (and having been) only baptized they (continually) ‘began under’/’were ready’ into/’for the purpose of’ the name of the Lord Jesus. (Acts 8:14a,15-16)

(The apostles) (continually) brought the good little message both/also to many villages of the Samaritans. (Acts 8:25b)

(The believers of the nations) asked (Peter) to stay on some days. (Acts 10:48b)

(The Jews asked Paul) to stay ‘against a time more’/’for a longer time’. (Acts 18:20a)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

On the following day (John the Baptist) sees Jesus coming towards him, and he says: “Behold, the Lamb of God, the One lifting/’taking away’ the miss (of the mark of God) of the adornment/’adorned world’!” (John 1:29)

The woman so let her water-pot be and went away into the city, and she says to the men: “Come here! Behold a man who has spoken to me all what (א,* א, B) I have made/done. Surely is not this One the christ/'anointed one'?” They so (P66,א,*א) came out, out of the city, and they (continually) came towards Him. (John 4:28-30)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

The picture of (Jesus) deepens: from in the beginning being called "a Jewish man", 4:9, to in the end being confessed to be the "saviour of the world", 4:42. (LarsOlov Eriksson "För att ni skall tro. Johannesevangeliet" p 88; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

One it is. - One it is! Us save can! - Christ Kyrie! - Christ Kyrie! Was sung in Stockholms Lyceum 1864-65 under the guidance of Conny Burman, my singing-master (also in Clara school 1858-59?). This written down in the sickbed 30th of April 1912; When Conny B-n had sent a kind regard to the very sick one. (August Strindberg "August Strindbergs brev juni 1911-maj 1912" s 348; letter 1912-04-30 to Conny Burman; the letter written two weeks before the death of Strindberg 1912-05-14, translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Here in Philadelphia there are surely a couple of thousand shops for ready-made clothing: all quite cheap, but all just the same. Still every person advertises his shop, claims it is the best, not in Philadelphia, whatever that they may mean - not i Pennsylvania - not in the United States - no! - but in the whole world. (Carl Jonas Love Almquist "Letter 1854-07-08 from Philadelphia to wife and daughter" p 76)

"The one who in accordance with to higher duties", (Göran said), "does not only live for oneself, but in his little degree tries to work as a member of the large family of mankind, he indeed has field enough for his work wherever he lives, in the country or in town, in the hut or in the palace." . . . (The upper-school scholar) saw (at the auction) an old woman draw away with a big bible under her arm. It was the family bible of corporal (Brant), the one he had inherited from his father, and on which cover the genealogical table of the whole family, its days of births and deaths, were noted . . . it was the book, out of which the old man had drawn nourishment to his faith in God and the saviour of mankind, got light in the dark hours of life and strength, when he felt be born down by the blows of fate. (Viktor Rydberg "De vandrande djäknarne" p 126,128-129; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

"That Copernican system", Mr Sven said, "wants to give me giddiness. To have one's parish church and one's dear study on a grain of dust whirling around in an immeasureable universe! One can get dizziness for less things." . . . "What do size, extension, distance mean before the one who spiritually judges?" (doctor Svante said). . . . "Perhaps this plantet bears the most sinful of all generations and has for this sake become chosen to the Golgotha of the planets. If our earth was the least one, as she probably had been the most unworthy to receive the Saviour of the world, so we may remember, that Jesus was not born in the mighty Rome, not in the enormous Babylon, not even in Jerusalem but in the insignificant Bethlehem. . . . Friends, I do not fear the Copernican hypothesis. The ones wanting to believe will not by her be hindered to do it. The ones not wanting to believe will with or without her find arguments for their unbelief." (Viktor Rydberg "Vapensmeden" p 103-105; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

(The Word of God) does not hate the female on account of the woman's act of disobedince in the beginning, nor does He reject the male on account of the man's transgression.But He seeks all, and desires to save all, wishing to make all the children of God, and calling all the saints unto one perfect man. (Hippolytus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers V:205)

In all things, and through all things, there is one God, the Father, and one Word, and one Son, and one Spirit, and one salvation to all who believe in Him. (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 469)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Alf Ahlberg, Åke Andrén, Nils Bolander, Lars-Ola Borglid, Sven Danell, Bob Dylan, Nikolaj Gogol, Hillis Grane, Linné Eriksson, A.P. Franklin, Carl Grimberg, Peter Halldorf, John Hedlund, Heinrich Heine, Erik J. Holmberg, E. Judah, Annty Landherr, Margareta Malmgren, Ernst Malmquist, Carl Henrik Martling, Fredrik Nielsen, Roland Oscarsson, A.W. Rendahl, E. Sanders, Elisabeth Sandlund, John Stott, Svend Erik Stybe, Leo Tolstoj, Marian Ullén, Mario Vargas Llosa, Ingrid Vist, P. Waldenström, Paul Wern, Gideon Wikström, Xenofon, Verner Zimmergren.


My own comments and speculations:

In a restoration perspective we see how the killed males in the city of Shechem and the Midianites, who got their cities burned, now take salvation by believing.

Mary witnesses, that Jesus is her Saviour. The messengers witness that Jesus is the Saviour of Israel (Luke 2:10-11), and the Samaritans that He is the Saviour of the adornment/’adorned world’. The light of the revelation increases in strength.

To stay two days is a sign that Jesus stays longer than an occasional guest (cf. Wisdom of Solomon 5:14).

Concerning Gen 34:25a-26b, see the earlier comparison with Shechem (John 4:5-6a).

Concerning Num 31:10, see the earlier comparison with the Midianite woman Cozbi (John 4:16-18).


Paul said: "We hope (and have hoped) on/for a living God, who is a Saviour of all men, ‘most rather’/’in particular’ believing ones." (1 Tim 4:10b)

(These things we write) on account of the Saying of the life, what (continually) was from a beginning, what we have heard (and hear), what our eyes have beheld (and behold), what we viewed and (what) our hands felt (on). (1 John 1:1)

(Jesus Christ) is a propitiation on account of our misses (of the mark of God), but not on account of ours only, however/but and/also on account of the whole adornment/’adorned world’. (1 John 2:2)

We have viewed (and view) and are witnesses, that the Father has dispatched (and dispatches) away the Son, a Saviour of the adornment/’adorned world’. (1 John 4:14)


Greek words:

ouketi (no longer/not any longer): See John 4:35-36 (Greek words).

Samaritês (Samaritan) (in the NT) Luke 9:52; 17:16; John 4:39-40; Acts 8:25 – Matt 10:5; Luke 10:33; John 8:48.

sôtêr (saviour) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Wisdom of Solomon 16:7; Luke 1:47; John 4:42; 1 John 4:14 – Esther 5:1a(D2); 8:12n(E13); Judith 9:11; 1 Macc 4:30; Sir 51:1; Baruch 4:22; Luke 2:11; John 6:64(א,*א); Acts 5:31; 13:23; Eph 5:23; Phil 3:20; 1 Tim 1:1; 2:3; 4:10; 2 Tim 1:10; Tit 1:3-4; 2:10,13; 3:4,6; 2 Pet 1:1,11; 2:20; 3:2,18; Jude v 25.


Additional studies:

Gen 19:24-25; Deut 32:15; Is 12:2; Luke 2:10-11; 10:7-9; John 6:37-39; 12:19; 17:8; Acts 1:8; 8:5-6; 15:3; 1 John 2:2.


Sandra M. Schneiders "'Because of the Woman's Testimony . . . '. Reexamining the Issue of Authorship in the Fourth Gospel."; New Testament Studies 44 (1998): 513-535.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-14; 2010-11-25; 2013-11-22; 2014-10-09)

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4:43-45 But after the two days He came out from there into Galilee. For Jesus Himself ‘was a’/bore witness, that a prophet has not honour in the own fatherland. As (א*) He so came into Galilee, the Galileans received Him, having beheld (and beholding) all things which (א*) He had made/done in a (disgraced) Jerosolyma/Jerusalem in/at the feast, for themselves they had and/also come into the feast.

Word for word: 4:43 (10 words in the Greek text) After but the two days (he)-came-out from-there into the Galilee. 4:44 (13 words in the Greek text) he-(himself) for Jesus was-a-witness that (a)-prophet not honour has in the own fatherland. 4:45 (26 words in the Greek text) as so (he)-came into the Galilee, received him the Galileans all-things having-beheld-(and-beholding) which (he)-made in Jerosolymas/'(a-disgraced)-Jerosolyma' in the feast, and they-(themselves) for came into the feast.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(Jacob said:) "A leader will not 'leave out'/disappear out of Judas and (not one) being in command out of His thighs, till - according to the circumstances - he (Hebrew: Shiloh) may come, (and) the things lying from/apart (will come) to him, and he himself (will be) an expectation of nations." (Gen 49:10, Greek OT)

(The Lord talked towards Moses: “Talk with the sons of Israel and speak towards them:) ‘You shall make the fiftieth period of time holy and cry throughout/out a ‘letting be’/’leaving alone’ upon the earth to all the ones dwelling/inhabiting it, a period of time of ‘letting be’/’leaving alone’, (a period) furnished with signs it shall be for you, and ‘one everyone’/’every single one’ shall go away into/to his acquisition, and everyone shall go away into his fatherland.’” (Lev 25:10, Greek OT)

(The result) of the inspection out of the tribe of Judas (was) 74 of the number of one thousand and 600. (This was the greatest tribe in Israel.) (Num 1:27, Greek OT)

These popular assemblies for/of Judas ‘according to’/after their inspection (were) 76500 (males). (Judas still was the greatest tribe in Israel.) (Num 26:22b, Greek OT)

(The Lord) chose the tribe of Judas, the mountain Zion, which He welcomed. (Ps 78:68, Greek OT)

(God) will make a district ... on the other side of the Jordan, Galilee of the nations, the parts of Judea. (Is 8:23b or 9:1b, Greek OT)

(The enemies of the righteous man will say: “We counted) his end (as) unhonoured.” (Wisdom of Solomon 5:4b)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “A sacrifice of a righteous male (is) agreeable.” (Sir 35:6a or 35:9a)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said to His disciples:) “The one receiving a prophet into/’for the purpose of’ a name of a prophet will take (the) wage of a prophet, and the one receiving a righteous one into/’for the purpose of’ a name of a righteous one will take (the) wage of a righteous one.” (Matt 10:41)

(Jesus) left/’set ... out’ afterwards from there. And having come into His fatherland (Galilee, Jesus) taught (the people) in their synagogue. ... And they ‘were caused to stumble’/’took offence’ in/at Him. But Jesus spoke to them: "A prophet is not unhonoured ‘if not’/except in the own (א,*א) fatherland and in his habitation." (Matt 13:53b-54a,57)

(Jesus) came out from there and He comes into His fatherland (= Galilee). (Mark 6:1a)

(The messenger) was dispatched away from God into a city of/’belonging to’ Judea (א*) 'to which (city)'/'with the' name Nazareth. (Luke 1:26b)

The parents (of Jesus) (continually/repeatedly) went 'according to'/every year into/to Jerusalem (at) the Feast of the ‘paschal lamb’/Passover. (Luke 2:41)

(Jesus was ... the son) of Judas. (Luke 3:33b)

Some (continually) were by the side of (Jesus) in the same seasonable time bringing away a message to Him on account of the Galileans, whose blood Pilate had mixed ‘in company’/together with their sacrifices. And ‘having answered’/’Jesus answered and’ spoke to them: "Do you think that these Galileans became missers (of the mark of God) ‘to the side of’/’in comparison with’ all the Galileans, because they have suffered (and suffer) these things?" (Luke 13:1-2)

The missers (of the mark of God) (drew near Jesus) to hear Him. (Luke 15:1b)

(The multitude said about the disciples of Jesus:) “Are not these, all of them … Galileans?” (Acts 2:7)

... Samaria had received (and received) the saying of God. (Acts 8:14a)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

(Jesus) came into the own things, and the own ones did not take Him to the side of (them). (John 1:11)

As (Jesus) (continually) was in/with (the people) in the (disgraced) Jerosolyma/Jerusalem in/at the ‘paschal lamb’/Passover in/during the feast, many believed into His name looking at His signs which He (continually) made. (John 2:23)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

The word "for" says that (Jesus) was travelling for the sake of the opposition. This indicates that Origen and Campbell Morgan are right when they mean that Jesus with fatherland here means Judea. There he was born, and there he was registered for census purposes. And he belonged to the tribe of Judah. Judea also got an opportunity first. But there he met opposition and not faith. Therefore he left Judea and drew to Galilee. (Studiebibeln II:483; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

How sweet did not (Jesus') sermon about the kingdom of heaven sound among and to the bodily poor and oppressed ones in Galilee! Yet it was not received by all these but only by the spiritually poor, the ones feeling their inner lack and poverty. If we are poor in the spirit, so we feel lack of the things we should own spriritually, for example we lack consolation, when we need such and must call about it to God, the spring of all comfort; we lack strength, when we need strength, and must get it every moment from the God of strength; we lack wisdom, when we need wisdom, and must wait it from God. A spiritually poor is not like a rich man sitting on his strong-box weeping over his poverty. No, the absence and the lack must be felt and be apprehended. As it is said in the Sermon on the Mount: Blessed the ones hungering and thirsting for righteousness, for they will be satisfied. My beloved ones, what learnings should we now draw from this text? Well, that God never abandons anyone, however dark it looks. But often he first helps, when all help seems to have gone, as here for John (the Baptist). As the apostle says, that God comforts the oppressed ones, yes, the dejected ones. But we must take the help in the way God likes to send it, and not always in the way we wish, even less in the way we decide. We wish the help highly up, so to speak, in order that we might avoid to humble ourselves. But often it comes deeply down, that is, first after we have become lowly enough to accept the will of God. Also here the words of Peter are valid, that God resists the proud ones but gives grace to the humble ones. Amen. (Karl Palmberg "Ur livskällan. Tredje årgången." p 26; Karl Palmberg /1842-1920/ was from 1883 a Lutheran clergyman in Månsarp in the diocese of Växjö and president in Jönköpings Missionsförening (Missionary Society) 1886-1911; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

The difficulties to become a prophet in the own country seem to have been greater for me than for others and more difficult than to become it in foreign countries. (August Strindberg "August Strindbergs brev XXI Supplement 1857-1893" p 228; letter 1887-06-13 to Werner Söderström; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

(Strandberg) already knew the whole story, and his assurance, that it hardly could throw a shadow on my honour, but on the other hand was suited to represent me as a conceited person, calmed me considerably, for the latter alternative still is endlessly better than the former. ("Viktor Rydbergs brev: Viktor Rydbergs och S.A. Hedlunds brevväxling" p 139; letter 1868-09-20 to S.A. Hedlund)

Still there were in the Roman army veterans such as (Picerna's father), spiritual sons of the old republic, who still entertained republican ideas, that honour is the virtue of the man and chastity the virtue of the woman. (Viktor Rydberg "Nero och hans älskarinna" p 61; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Margaretha Alling Engstedt, Carl Jonas Love Almqvist, Benoit Aubin, Henrik Berg, Oloph Bexell, August Bondeson, Grazia Deledda, Charles Dickens, Emilia Fogelklou, Carl Grimberg, Lennart Gustavsson, Björn Hallström, Yngve Hamrin, Kerstin Hed, Hakon Hedemann-Gade, Verner von Heidenstam, Alf Henrikson, Henrik Ibsen, Johannes V. Jensen, Ingrid Johansson, Lennart Johansson, Viktor Johansson, E. Judah, Sven T. Kjellberg, Carl J. Kullenbergh, Selma Lagerlöf, Karl Larsson, Sven Lidman, Martin Luther, Vilhelm Moberg, Karl Modin, Petrus M. Nicander, Hugo Odeberg, Jan Olof Olsson, Simon Ottosson, Abraham Rundbäck, Sven Edvin Salje, John Samuelson, E. Sanders, Sven-Åke Selander, Svante Ståhl, Gunnar Svensson, Per Johan Svensson, Ingemar Thorsén, Anton Tjechov, Robert Wernick, Erik Wistrand, Eva Österberg.


My own comments and speculations:

The Synoptics say that Jesus' fatherland was Galilee (however compare with Luke 1:26 א* where it is said that Nazareth was a city belonging to Judea). But for John the name of this fatherland was Judea. Compare with the prophecy of Isaiah, saying that Galilee will become a part of Judea (Is 8:23 or 9:1). Furthermore we have also in Luke and the Acts passages, where Galilee is seen as a part of a greater Judea (Luke 1:5; 7:17; 23:5; Acts 10:37; 26:20).

In times of old the land of Judas in south had been highly honoured, while Israel (Samaria/Galilee) in north had been humilated by being subdued before Judas. Now in a restoration perspective the honoured Judas must be humilated and the humilated Israel honoured. In John the Jews are described as those who were responsible for Jesus' death. And their king Jesus, of the tribe of Judas, humilated Himself most of all by being a servant, who at last had to die on a cross.

Compare also My own comments and speculations to John 7:52.


It is manifest before all, that our Lord has stuck (and sticks) up out of Judas. (Heb 7:14a)


Greek words:

Galilaios (Galilean) (in the NT) Luke 13:1-2; John 4:45; Acts 2:7 – Matt 26:69; Mark 14:70; Luke 22:59; 23:6; Acts 1:11; 5:37.

dechomai (receive) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Sir 35:6(9); Matt 10:41; John 4:45; Acts 8:14 – 1 Macc 15:20,27; Wisdom of Solomon 19:14; Sir 51:16; Baruch 4:32; Matt 10:14,40; 11:14; 18:5; Mark 6:11; 9:37; 10:15; Luke 2:28; 8:13; 9:5,48,53; 10:8,10; 16:4,6-7,9; 18:17; 22:17. Acts 3:21; 7:38,59; 11:1; 17:11; 22:5; 28:21; 1 Cor 2:14; 2 Cor 6:1; 7:15; 8:17; 11:4,16; Gal 4:14; Eph 6:17; Phil 4:18; Col 4:10; 1 Thess 1:6; 2:13; 2 Thess 2:10; Heb 11:31; Jas 1:21.

ekeithen (from there) (in the NT + examples in the OT) Mark 6:1; John 4:43 – Gen 2:10; Num 21:12-13,16; 23:27; 1 Sam 24:1; Ezra 6:6; Judith 7:13; Matt 4:21; 5:26; 9:27; 11:1, 12:9,15; 13:53; 14:13; 15:21,29; 19:15; Mark 6:10-11; 7:24; 10:1; Luke 9:4; 12:59; 16:26; John 11:54; Acts 13:4; 18:7; 20:13; 27:12; Rev 22:2.

patris (fatherland) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 13:54,57; Mark 6:1; John 4:44 – Esther 2:10,20; 2 Macc 4:1; 5:8,15; 8:21,33; 13:3,14; 14:18; Mark 6:4; Luke 4:24; Heb 11:14.

timê (honour) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) John 4:44 – Esther 1:20; 1 Macc 1:39; 14:21; 2 Macc 4:15; 5:16; 9:21; Sir 3:11; 10:28; 38:1; 45:12; Epistle of Jeremiah v 24. Matt 27:6,9. Acts 4:34; 5:2-3; 7:16; 19:19; 28:10; Rom 2:7,10; 9:21; 12:10; 13:7; 1 Cor 6:20; 7:23; 12:23-24; Col 2:23; 1 Thess 4:4; 1 Tim 1:17; 5:17; 6:1,16; 2 Tim 2:20-21; Heb 2:7,9; 3:3; 5:4; 1 Pet 1:7; 2:7; 3:7; 2 Pet 1:17; Rev 4:9,11; 5:12-13; 7:12; 21:26.


Additional studies:

Tobit 1:6; Matt 1:3; 4:12-15; 9:1; Mark 1:14; Luke 4:14; John 2:13; 4:3,40; 8:59; 10;31; 18:35; 19:14-15; Phil 2:8; Rev 5:5.


Gilbert van Belle "The Faith of the Galileans: The Parenthesis in Jn 4:44"; Epheminides Theological Lovansienses 74 (1998): 27-44.

Robert Sloan "'Signs and Wonders': A Rhetorical Clue To The Pentecost Discourse"; The Evangelical Quarterly 63.3 (July- Sept. 1991): 225-240.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-15; 2010-11-27; 2013-11-22; 2014-10-10)

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4:46-48 He came so again into Cana of Galilee, whereat/where He hade made the water wine. But (א,*א) it/there (continually) was a certain kingly (one), whose son (continually) was weak in Capharnaum. Having heard that Jesus had arrived out of Judea into Galilee he so came (א*) towards Him and asked (continually/repeatedly), ‘in order that’/that He might descend and heal his son, for he (continually) was about to die. Jesus so spoke towards him: “If – according to the circumstances – you may not behold signs and omens, you may not/certainly not believe.”

Word for word: 4:46 (23 words in the Greek text) (He)-came so again into the Cana (of)-the (of)-Galilee, whereat (he)-made the water wine. (It/there)-was-(continually) but (a)-certain kingly, whose the son was-weak-(continually) in Capharnaum. 4:47 (27 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) this-(one) having-heard that Jesus had-arrived out-of the Judea into the Galilee (he)-came so towards him and asked-(continually) in-order-that (he)-might-descend and heal his the son, (he)-was-(continually)-about-to for die. 4:48 (15 words in the Greek text) spoke so the Jesus towards him: if-according-to-the-circumstances not signs and omens (you)-may-behold, not not (you)-may-believe.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

The Lord spoke towards Moses: “... Behold all the omens, which I have given in your hands. You shall make/perform them opposite Pharaoh.” (Ex 4:21a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Moses:) “I will harden Pharaoh's heart and make My signs and omens full in earth/'the land' Egypt.” ... (The Lord/Moses said to Pharaoh:) “In this you will have knowledge, that I am the Lord: Behold, I slap (with) the rod in My hand against the water in the river, and it will throw about into/to blood. ... And Moses and Aaron made in this way. ... And every/all the water in the river threw about into/to blood. (Ex 7:3,17b,20, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Moses:) “If – according to the circumstances – Pharaoh may talk towards you, saying: ‘Give us a sign or an omen’, you shall speak to your brother Aaron: ‘Take the rod and toss it against the earth opposite Pharaoh and opposite his attendants/servants, and it will be a dragon.’” ... And (the rod) became a dragon. (Ex 7:9,10b, Greek OT)

(Moses said to Israel:) "Know the education of the Lord your God and His magnificent things and the powerful hand and the high arm and His signs and His omens." (Deut 11:2b-3a, Greek OT)

A prophet as Moses has not yet stood up in Israel ... in/with all the signs and omens which the Lord dispatched away him to make them in earth/'the land' Egypt, to Pharaoh and to all his attendants/servants and to every/all his earth/land. (Deut 34:10a,11, Greek OT)

(King Darius wrote: "The God of Daniel) takes ‘in stead’/’part with’ and delivers and makes/performs signs and omens in heaven and upon the earth." (Dan 6:27a, Greek OT, Theod)

(The son of Tobit said:) “ … What sign may I give (Gabael), and/that he may gain additional knowledge of me and believe me?” (Tobit 5:2a, S)

(Judith said to the Lord:) “ … You are a succour, an assistance of ones being weak.” (Judith 9:11a)

(Wisdom) came into, into the soul of the attendant/servant of the Lord and ‘stood against’/resisted fearful kings in/with omens and signs. (Wisdom of Solomon 10:16)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) ”Divinations and forebodes and dreams are vain. ... If – according to the circumstances – (the beholding) may not be dispatched away in a visitation from the side of a highest one, you may not give your heart into them.” (Sir 34:5a,6)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “From the side of the Highest One is/comes healing.” (Sir 38:2a)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “Child, do not ‘see by the side of’/overlook in/with your feebleness, however have a prayer with the Lord, and He Himself will heal you.” (Sir 38:9)

(Baruch said:) “… The Lord … has led out (His) people out of 'an earth'/'a land' of Egypt in/with a powerful hand and in/with signs and in/with omens and in/with great ability and in/with high arm.” (Baruch 2:11a)


The Latter Revelation:

On His having come into, into Capharnaum, a “leader of a hundred (men)” came to (Jesus), calling Him to side of him and saying: “ *(א*) My boy has been (and is) thrown paralytic in the habitation, being tormented venerably.” And (Jesus) says to him: “Having come shall I attend him?” (The “leader of a hundred men” said:) “ ... Only speak a saying, and my boy will be healed." (Matt 8:5-7,8b)

(Jesus said to the twelve:) “Attend the ones being weak.” (Matt 10:8a)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "False Christs and false prophets will rise ... so that and/also the chosen ones, if possible, will be (א,* א) led astray. Behold, I have spoken (and speak) to you beforehand." (Matt 24:24-25)

Having straight off shouted the father of the little boy (continually/repeatedly) said: “I believe. Succour my unbelief.” (Mark 9:24)

(Jesus said to His disciples:) "False Christs and false prophets will be rise and will give signs and omens towards, if able/possible, to lead away the chosen ones astray." (Mark 13:22)

‘Having badly’/’being bad’ a certain slave of the “leader of a hundred men” (continually) was about to come to an end, (a slave) who (continually)was noble/honoured (for) him. (Luke 7:2)

(Jesus said to the crowds:) “The ones ‘beginning under’/’being the first’ in glorious clothing and delicacy are in the royal palaces.” (Luke 7:25b)

Joanna, the woman of Chuza, ‘given permission’/’allied to’ Herod, (was together with Jesus). (Luke 8:3a)

It became/came a fear (in) every soul, but (א,* א, B) but many omens and signs (continually) became/’came about’ through the apostles. (Acts 2:43a)

The district of (Tyre and Sidon) be/was supported from (the district of) the kingly (= Herod). (Acts 12:20b)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

The Jews spoke to (Jesus): "What sign do You show us, because You make/do these things?" ... (And) many believed into His name looking at His signs which He (continually) made. (John 2:18,23b)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 - about 1500

Next day (Abbe) has got pneumonia. . . . "This is the most dangerous disease", Lisabet assures. "One only dies immediately, Linus-Ida has said." . . . "Yes, now he then is so warm so it is enough", (Abbe's mother) says. "The poor child, he has fever so the blood is boiling in him." . . . In the morning of the ninth day (Madicken) gets a letter . . . from (Abbe's father). . . . He wirites in this way: "I am a gentile, Madicken, this I have always been, so I have no God to pray to. But perhaps you have, pray for Abbe then. . . . For the rest you need not pray so much. . . . What a home will it become without Abbe, ask him this! And now it is in a hurry." . . . (Next morning) Abbe is sitting in the bed . . . eating gruel and open sandwich with cheese. He is pale. But nevertheless it is the old, usual Abbe, who sits there. (Astrid Lindgren "Madicken och Junibackens Pims" p 211-216; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Capernaum was a garrison city and an important customs post, and a military official (cf. Jn 4.46) would quite naturally be present there. (David Hill "The Gospel of Matthew" p 158)

Further observations show still more clearly how deeply rooted the fourth evangelist was in the O.T. and biblical theology. His diction is also enriched by turns of phrase which suggest indirect quotations. Here are some examples: ... 4:48 (signs and wonders), very frequent in the OT (Greek OT), especially for the miracles of the Exodus. (Rudolf Schnackenburg ”The Gospel according to St John 1” p 123)

The kingly man can have been Chuza himself (Luke 8:3), who by Herod Antipas had been made Bailiff over the whole Galilee. In that case it can be after the healing of his son that his consort joined the disciples of the little carpenter. (Sven Danell "Kyrkoårets vardag" p 475 in comment till Joh 4:46-53; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

So you believe in omens? - In predictions, warnings, exhortations from above I must believe, but in magicians and sibyls I do not! - But accordingly in omens? - Yes, in such ones we are given, but not in such ones we demand. (August Strindberg "Svarta fanor" p 89; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Mrs. Gordon had to beg a goodish while, before she could get (Ingmar) to say his opinion. "I think, that you would not let people speak so ill of you", he at last expressed himself. "How do you mean then, that we would be able to prevent it?" Mrs. Gordon asked. "Do you not think, that the evil, which they say about you, depends on the thing that you want to be too holy? It would soon has an end, if you wanted to be as others letting young people marry." To Ingmar's surprise Mrs. Gordon was less upset about this, than when he had advised her to try to make money. "You are not the first, who has said me this", she said. "But if you ask anyone in the colony, they will all answer you, that they want to live a clean and unpunishable life." "Yes, it is true, it is so", Ingmar said. "God will give us a sign, if he wants us to change something in this respect", Mrs. Gordon said, and after that the conversation died down. (Selma Lagerlöf "Jerusalem II p 421; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

It was not taken a long time, before I became acquainted with members of Rome's begging brotherhood. These have one by practice wonderfully procured ability to among strangers recognize the ones being "callow". . . . During the first days one is deeply moved by their sadly begging: "I die of hunger." . . . After the lapse of some days, however, strong doubts begin to wake about the threatening famine. . . . Also the sternest and most final "no" is for the Roman beggar nothing else than a declaration that one wants to negotiate and a promise, that one will yield, if he is persevering. . . . Your kindly host and hostess inform you, that there is a certain sign, which works with magical power on the most importunate one within the fraternity. The sign is this: you crook your right arm, that your hand comes on a level with your shoulder, stretches out your forefinger and your middle finger describing with your hand about an eighth of the circumference of a circle. . . . Whenever I made (the sign), the beggar instantly gave up his matter for lost. The usual promise, that I for a soldo would be spared from the pains of the purgatory, became silent on his lips, his face expressed complete hopelessness, and he turned away to go on the prowl elsewhere. (Viktor Rydberg "Tiggarne i Rom" p 286-288; Rome 1874; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

(Anna Stjärnhök) has not a single clear impression left (of all happening her on the way home). Well, one, infecting her soul. "If it now was not God, who did it", she is in the habit of whispering for herself, "if it now was not God, who sent the wolves?" She demands signs, she demands wonders. She watches round the sky and the earth. But she does not see a finger be stretched out of the sky pointing out her way. No statues of haze and light go before her. (Selma Lagerlöf "Gösta Berlings saga" p 179; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

(Jönköping) trembled still (in the year 1835) in the memory of the passed year. Many thought, that the epidemic was an omen about the last judgment. Once, when it was spoken about those days in August, the bible with the big buckles was taken up, and it was read about a black horse and his rider, whose name was Death, about the fall of stars from the sky and a day of wrath, which is approaching. It was also read out of another book, which first leaf showed with black ground a star shimmering in yellow and red in an envelope of fume, which was lengthened and likened a train. The word "the comet" often was named. In the evenings people stood in groups on the street. They talked seeing towards the sky. "The comet is seen clearly", the servant of the house said one evening, short before bedtime. She took the boy's hand leading him out. It was still not night-dark, but here and there stars twinkled in the dark blue, and among them the star with the train appeared. Many was outside beholding the omen. "The comet now is larger than yesterday", one said. Another said: "If some days and nights he is so large, that he covers the sky." People spoke about the burning of the world and the last day. Otherwise, when they after ended day's work gathered outside the doors of the houses, they used to joke and laugh. Now the men looked serious. Something heavy and oppressed was over them. (Viktor Rydberg "Från barndomen" p 112-113; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

This person certainly was of royal race, or possessed some dignity from his office, to which the title “noble” was attached. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:123)

The omens of the day had all been favourable. All without one, which one still tried to give a happy interpretation. It was whispered something about an altar, which stood close to the "cella" of the Capitolian Jupiter. They had in the morning sacrificed an incense there, but the smoke had ascended vehemently and thickened to a cloud, which still remained like a black stain on the otherwise pink sky. (Viktor Rydberg "Simon undergörarens himmelsfärd" p 37; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Jevgenij Aleksandrovitj Brovkin, Svetlana Aleksijevitj, Ewert Amnefors, Lennart Andersson, Roger Andersson, Åke Andrén, Ivo Andric, Margit Assarsson, Victoria Benedictsson, Elisabeth Beskow, Hjalmar Bjurulf, Raine Borg, Gordon Bridger, Hjalmar Börjeson, Alexander Daumont, Charles Dickens, Erland Engdahl, Albert Engström, Sven Gabriel Fovelin, Rolf Fredriksson, Bo Frid, Otto Funcke, Sergej Gurin, Georg Hafström, Krister Hanell, Thomas Hardy, Lars Hartman, Seamus Heaney, Verner von Heidenstam, Alf Henrikson, Stina Hergin, Hjalmar Holmquist, Homeros, Håkan Håkansson, Anders Jarlert, Bernhard Karlgren, Olle Larsson, Lars Lindberg, Agnes Linder, Sigurd Lindgren, Hampus Lyttkens, Olaus Magnus, John Magnusson, Bertil Malmberg, Mo Yan, Vilhelm Moberg, Fredrik Nielsen, Bertil Nilsson, Folke Nordangård, Bror Olsson, Karl Palmberg, Efraim Palmqvist, Lewi Pethrus, Martin P:son Nilsson, Gösta Sandberg, Gunnar E. Sandgren, William B. Silverman, Harry Sjöman, Alexander Solsjenitsyn, John Stott, A.M. Strinnholm, Jesper Svartvik, Hjalmar Söderberg, Edith Södergran; Olof Thulin, Anton Tjechov, J.R.R. Tolkien, Nils Erik Villstrand, Paul Wern, C.A. Wetterbergh, David Wilkerson, Thecla Wrangel, Klas Östergren.


My own comments and speculations:

The usual translation of the Greek word ”teras” is ”wonder” or “miracle”. Perhaps a better Greek word to translate by “wonder/wonderment” is “thauma” (cf. Sir 48:4, where it is told about the wonderful things of Elijah with the Greek word ”thaumasios”). The meaning of “teras” is nearer “sign” than “wonder/miracle”, why I have chosen to translate by ”omen”. The following event is an example of both a sign (for example that struck persons in Egypt are restored; see My own comments and speculations to John 4:51-53) and an omen (Jesus beforehand foretells a healing, before it is confirmed; cf. also Matt 24:24-25).

In Egypt Moses made terrible signs and omens before the king. In a restoration perspective we now see how Jesus is asked to make a healing sign and omen before a kingly person.

According to the kingly person, compare with Matt 14:9 and Mark 6:14,22, where Herodes is called king. The kingly person can allude to the “leader of a hundred (men)” in Matt 8:5-13, an officer in the service of "king" Herod Antipas.

Concerning signs in Egypt, see for example Ex 7:9-10. Concerning omens i Egypt, see for example Ex 7:17-20.


Paul said to the believers in Corinth: "Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we proclaim Christ, having been (and being) crucified, to Jews indeed a stumbling block but to nations a folly.” (1 Cor 1:22-23)


Greek words:

astheneô (be weak) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Judith 9:11; Matt 10:8; John 4:46 – Judith 16:11; Matt 25:36; Mark 6:56; Luke 4:40; John 5:3,7; 6:2; 11:1-3,6. Acts 9:37; 19:12; 20:35; Rom 4:19; 8:3; 14:1-2; 1 Cor 8:11-12; 2 Cor 11:21,29; 12:10; 13:3-4,9; Phil 2:26-27; 2 Tim 4:20; Jas 5:14.

basilikos (kingly) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) John 4:46; Acts 12:20 – Esther 2:9; 8:12l(E11),15; 1 Macc 6:43; 10:43; 11:34; 15:8; 2 Macc 3:13; 4:25; John 4:49; Acts 12:21; Jas 2:8.

iaomai (heal) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Sir 38:9; Matt 8:8; John 4:47 – Tobit 3:17; 12:14; Wisdom of Solomon 16:10,12; Matt 8:13; 13:15; 15:28; Mark 5:29; Luke 4:18; 5:17; 6:18-19; 7:7; 8:47; 9:2,11,42; 14:4; 17:15; 22:51; John 5:13; 12:40; Acts 9:34; 10:38; 28:8,27; Heb 12:13; Jas 5:16; 1 Pet 2:24.

mellô (be about to) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) 2 Macc 7:18; Luke 7:2; John 4:47 – 1 Macc 13:14; 2 Macc 8:3; 13:(10)11; 14:41; Wisdom of Solomon 19:1. Matt 2:13; 3:7; 11:14; 12:32; 16:27; 17:12,22; 20:22; 24:6; Mark 10:32; 13:4; Luke 3:7; 9:31,44; 10:1; 13:9; 19:4; 21:7,36; 22:23; 24:21; John 6:6,15,64(P66,א,*א); John 6:71; 7:35,39; 11:51; 12:4,33; 14:22; 18:32. Acts 3:3; 5:35; 11:28; 12:6; 13:34; 16:27; 17:31; 18:14; 19:27; 20:3,7,13,38; 21:27,37; 22:16,26,29; 23:3,15,20,27; 24:15,25; 25:4; 26:2,22-23; 27:2,10,30,33; 28:6; Rom 4:24; 5:14; 8:13,18,38; 1 Cor 3:22; Gal 3:23; Eph 1:21; Col 2:17; 1 Thess 3:4; 1 Tim 1:16; 4:8; 6:19; 2 Tim 4:1; Heb 1:14; 2:5; 6:5; 8:5; 9:11(א,*א,A); 10:1,27; 11:8,20; 13:14; Jas 2:12; 1 Pet 5:1; 2 Pet 1:12; 2:6; Rev 1:19; 2:10; 3:2,10; 6:11; 8:13; 10:4,7; 12:4-5; 17:8.

teras (omen) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Wisdom of Solomon 10:16; Baruch 2:11; Mark 13:22; John 4:48; Acts 2:43 – Esther 10:3f(F6); Wisdom of Solomon 8:8; 17:14(15); 19:8; Sir 45:19; Matt 24:24; Acts 2:19,22; 4:30; 5:12; 6:8; 7:36; 14:3; 15:12; Rom 15:19; 2 Cor 12:12; 2 Thess 2:9; Heb 2:4.


Additional studies:

Ex 7:4-5; Deut 4:34; 6:22; 7:19; 29:2-4; Sir 36:5(6); Matt 8:5-13; Luke 4:23; 7:1-7; John 2:1,9,12; 4:3,54; 20:30-31.


Charles H. Giblin "Suggestion, Negative Response and Positive Action in St. John's Portrayal of Jesus (John 2:1-11; 4:46-54; 7:2-14; 11:1-44)"; New Testament Studies 26 (1980): 197-211.

Donald Guthrie "The Importance of Signs in the Fourth Gospel"; Vox Evangelica 5 (1967): 72-83.

A.H. Mead "The 'Basilikos' in John 4:46-53"; Journal for the Study of the New Testament 23 (1985): 69-72.

John Wilkinson "A Study of Healing in the Gospel according to John"; Scottish Journal of Theology 20 (1967): 442- .


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-15; 2010-12-01; 2013-11-24; 2014-10-10)

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4:49-50 The kingly one says towards Him: “Lord, descend before my little boy dies.” Jesus says to him: “Go! Your son lives!” The man believed the saying * (א*) and went.

Word for word: 4:49 (12 words in the Greek text) (12 words in the Greek text): says towards him the kingly: lord, descend before (to)-die the little-boy my. 4:50 (16 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) says (to)-him the Jesus: go, the son your lives. believed the man the saying and went.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(God said to Moses:) “A little boy of eight days of/among you shall be ‘cut round’/circumcised.” (Gen 17:12a, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Moses:) "'Every the'/everyone having been (and being) bitten shall, having beheld (the serpent), live." (Num 21:8b, Greek OT)

(Elijah took the very little boy, who had been dead,) and gave him to his mother. And Elijah spoke: "See, your son lives." (1 Kings 17:23b, Greek OT)


The Latter Revelation:

(The “leader of a hundred men” said to Jesus:) " *(א*) My boy has been (and is) thrown paralytic in the habitation, being tormented venerably. ... (Lord) ... only speak a saying, and my boy will be healed. For I am and/also a man being arranged (א,* א, B) underneath (judicial) authority, having soldiers underneath me. And I say to this one: ‘Go!’ and he goes." ... And Jesus spoke to the “leadership of a hundred (men)”: "Withdraw! As you have believed, (let it) become for you." (Matt 8:6,8b-9a,13a)

Having ‘got power over’/seized the hand of the little girl (Jesus) says to her: “ … I say to you: ‘Rise.’” (Mark 5:41)

(Jesus said to the woman:) "Because of this saying, withdraw. The little demon comes (and has come) out, out of your daughter." And she (went) away into her house. (Mark 7:29-30a)


Paul said to the believers in Rome: "Consequently the faith (comes) out of a hearsay, but the hearsay through a word of Christ." (Rom 10:17)


Greek words:

paidion (little boy or girl) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Mark 5:41; John 4:49 – Tobit 4:4-5,12-14(BA),19; 5:19; 6:18; 10:11; 14:3,8-9,11; Judith 4:11; 7:23; 2 Macc 8:28; Baruch 4:15; Epistle of Jeremiah v 32; Bel and the Dragon v 20; Matt 2:8-9,11,13-14,20-21; 11:16; 14:21; 15:38; 18:2-5; 19:13-14; Mark 5:39-40; 7:28,30; 9:24,36-37; 10:13-15; Luke 1:59,66,76,80; 2:17,27,40; 7:32; 9:47-48; 11:7; 18:16-17; John 16:21; 21:5; 1 Cor 14:20; Heb 2:13-14; 11:23; 1 John 2:14,18.

poreuomai (go) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 8:9; John 4:50 – Esther 4:13; Tobit 1:3,6-7,10,14-15,19; 2:3,10; 3:5; 4:5,15(BA); 5:2-4,6,9-10,16,21; 6:1(2),6,17-18; 9:2,5; 10:5-6,7(BA); 11:1(BA),4,6,16; 12:1; Judith 5:9; 8:35; 10:11-12; 12:11; 13:16,20; 14:3; 1 Macc 1:13,44; 3:31; 5:17,20-21,29,39,46,58,66; 6:5,22-23,59; 7:7; 8:19; 9:4,59; 10:37,60,77; 11:7,21,24,39; 12:3,17,50; 13:20; 14:1,3; 16:5. Wisdom of Solomon 5:21; 6:4; Sir 5:2; 8:15; 18:30; 25:26; 32:20; 34:26(31); 46:10; Baruch 1:18; 2:10; 3:13; 4:13,26; Bel and the Dragon v 4,33. Matt 2:8-9,20; 9:13; 10:6-7; 11:4,7; 12:1,45; 17:27; 18:12; 19:15; 21:2,6; 22:9,15; 24:1; 25:9,16,41; 26:14; 27:66; 28:7,11,16,19; Luke 1:6,39; 2:3,41; 4:30,42; 5:24; 7:6,8,11,22,50; 8:14,48; 9:12-13,51-53,56-57; 10:37-38; 11:5,26; 13:31-33; 14:10,19,31; 15:4,15,18; 17:11,14,19; 19:12,28,36; 21:8; 22:8,22,33; 24:13,28. John 7:35; (7:53; 8:1,11); 10:4; 11:11; 14:2-3,12,28; 16:7,28; 20:17. Acts 1:10-11,25; 5:20,41; 8:26-27,36,39; 9:3,11,15,31; 10:20; 12:17; 14:16; 16:7,16,36; 17:14; 18:6; 19:21; 20:1,22; 21:5; 22:5-6,10,21; 23:23; 24:25; 25:12,20; 26:12-13; 27:3; 28:26. Rom 15:24-25; 1 Cor 10:27; 16:4,6; 1 Tim 1:3; 2 Tim 4:10; Jas 4:13; 1 Pet 3:19,22; 4:3; 2 Pet 2:10; 3:3; Jude v 11,16,18.

prin (sense of time: before) (in the NT + one example in the Apocrypha) John 4:49 – Judith 7:14; Matt 1:18; 26:34,75; Mark 14:30,72; Luke 22:61; John 8:58; 14:29; Acts 2:20; 7:2; 25:16.


Additional studies:

2 Kings 8:9-10; Mark 5:35-36; Luke 7:6-9.


Charles H. Giblin "Suggestion, Negative Response and Positive Action in St. John's Portrayal of Jesus (John 2:1-11; 4:46-54; 7:2-14; 11:1-44)"; New Testament Studies 26 (1980): 197-211.

John Wilkinson "A Study of Healing in the Gospel according to John"; Scottish Journal of Theology 20 (1967): 442- .


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-16; 2010-12-02; 2013-11-24)

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4:51-53 But already on his descending, the (א,* א) slaves went to meet him and they brought a message (א,* א) that/: “His boy lives.” He so inquired from the side of them (about) the hour, in which he had/behaved more refined. And (א,* א, A) they spoke to him that/: “Yesterday, a seventh hour, the fever-fire/fever let him be. The father so had knowledge, that * (P75, א*, B) (it was) that hour, in which He (א*) spoke (to) him: “Your son lives”. And he himself believed Him, and his whole habitation/household.

Word for word: 4:51 (15 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus) already but his descending the slaves went-to-meet him and (they)-brought-a-message that the boy his lives. 4:52 (21 words in the Greek text) (he)-inquired so the hour from-the-side-of them in which more-refined (he)-had. and (they)-spoke (to)-him that yesterday (an)-hour seventh let-be him the fever-fire. 4:53 (25 words in the Greek text Sinaiticus prima manus) had-knowledge so the father that that the hour in which (he)-spoke (to)-him: the son your lives, and believed he-(himself) him and the habitation his whole.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

God blessed the seventh day and made it holy. (Gen 2:3a, Greek OT)

(Noah) spoke: "On/’under the rule of’ something cursed (be) Canaan, a ‘boy of a member of the household’/’slave of slaves’ he shall be to his brothers." (Gen 9:25, Greek OT)

(A Hebrew male said to Moses:) ”You do not want to ‘take me up for yourself’/’get rid of me’, 'which turn'/'in the way which' you yesterday ‘took up ... for yourself’/’got rid of’ the Egyptian?” … (Ex 2:14b, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to Pharaoh:) "I will give/make a distinction ‘upwards middle’/between My people and ‘upwards middle’/- your people. In/on the following day this sign will be upon the earth." The Lord made/did in this way. And a dog-fly multitude became to the side of into the houses of Pharaoh and into the houses of his attendants/servants and into every/all the earth/land of Egypt. And the earth was wholly destructed from/’owing to’ the dog-fly. (Ex 8:23-24, Greek OT)

(Moses said to Israel: “If you will not obey the Lord your God, He will) hit you with … fever-fire/fever.” (Deut 28:22a, Greek OT)

The Lord broke/crushed the little boy (of king David) … and he was not strong, and David sought God on account of the very little boy. … It became in/on the seventh day, and the very little boy died. And the slaves of David feared to bring up a message (Greek: anangellô) to him that the very little boy was (and had been) deceased. … And David spoke towards his boys/slaves: “Is (and has ... been) the very little boy deceased?” And they talade: “He is (and has been) deceased.” (2 Sam 12:15b-16a,18,19b, Greek OT)

(The king said about Haman:) “May he and/also use violence (against) the woman in my habitation?” … (Esther 7:8b, Greek OT)

(The Lord said to His people:) "I am the God ... bringing up a message (about) the last/later things before they become and together/’at the same time’ it was brought to a consummation." (Is 46:9b-10a, Greek OT)

(The man dispatched away from the king) (continually/repeatedly) inquired, if these truths having reached/happened in this way. (2 Macc 3:9b)

(Solomon said to the Lord:) “You have arranged every thing throughout (with) measure and number and standing-place/balance.” (Wisdom of Solomon 11:20b)

(Solomon said to the Lord:) “Your saying healing/healed all.” (Wisdom of Solomon 16:12b)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “The works of (the Lord) (are) in (His) sayings.” (Sir 42:15b)

(Jesus, the son of Sirach, said:) “ Sun (being) in sight bringing/brings a message (about) … a work of (the) Highest One.” (Sir 43:2Sc)


The Latter Revelation:

(The “leader of a hundred men” said to Jesus:) “ * (א*) My boy has been (and is) thrown paralytic (to the bed) in the habitation.” (Matt 8:6a)

(The “leader of a hundred men” said:) “ ... Only speak a saying, and my boy will be healed. … I say to (my slave): 'Make/do' and he makes/does (it).” ... And Jesus spoke to (the “leader of a hundred men”): “Withdraw! As you have believed, (let it) become for you.” And * (א,* א, B) the boy was healed in that hour. And having returned into his house in this hour the “leader of a hundred (men)” found the boy being healthy (א*). (Matt 8:8b,9b,13)

Having come into the habitation of Peter, Jesus beheld his mother-in-law being (and having been) thrown (to bed) and having a fever. And He touched her hand, and the fever-fire/fever let her be, and she raised and rendered Him service. (Matt 8:14-15)

(The people in the synagogue) questioned (Jesus) saying if/: “Is it permitted (on) the sabbaths/sabbath to attend?”, (this) in order that they might accuse Him. But He spoke to them: “What man will be ‘out of’/of you, who ‘will have’/has one sheep, and if – according to the circumstances – this may fall in into/- a pit (on) the sabbaths/sabbath, (who) by no means having (א,*א) ‘got power (over)’/seized (it) will raise it (א,*א)? How great/much difference does a man so make (compared with) a sheep? ‘So that’/therefore it is permitted to make/do finely (on) the sabbaths/sabbath.” (Matt 12:10b-12)

(Some Sadducees said:) "But they/there (continually) were seven brothers by the side of us. And having taken to wife the first ‘came to an end’/died. ... Likewise and/also (with) the second and the third till the seventh." (Matt 22:25a,26)

Jesus came into the habitation of Simon and Andrew in company with James and John. But the mother-in-law of Simon (continually) lay down having a fever. And straight/’straight off’ they say/tell Him on account of her. And having come to (her) He raised her having ‘got power over’/seized the hand. And the fever-fire/fever let her be, and she (continually) rendered them service. (Mark 1:29b-31)

Out of the memorial tombs a man in/with an unclean spirit went to meet (Jesus). … And (the people) look at the (man having been) demon-possessed, being seated, being (and having been) clothed and being moderate. (Mark 5:2b,15a)

(Jesus said to the woman:) "Because of this saying, withdraw. The little demon comes (and has come) out, out of your daughter." And having gone away into her house she found the little girl having been (and being) thrown against the bed. And the little demon who/- had (and was) come out. (Mark 7:29-30)

The saying of Jesus (continually) was in/with (judicial) authority. (Luke 4:32b)

(Jesus) came into, into the habitation of Simon. But the mother-in-law of Simon (continually) was ‘held together’/affected by a great fever-fire/fever, and he asked Him on account of her. And having stood upon/near above her, He ‘honoured on’/blamed the fever-fire/fever, and it let her be. But/and immediately having stood up she (continually) rendered them service. (Luke 4:38b-39)

Having called to (himself) one of the ’boys or girls’/boys the older brother (continually/repeatedly) inquired, what these things * (א,* א, A) might be. (Luke 15:26)

Jesus spoke towards (Zaccheus) that/: "Today it has become/come saving to this house” (Luke 19:9a)

(The one acting unrighteously towards his neighbour said to Moses:) “’You do not want to ‘take up ... for yourself’/’get rid of’ me 'what turn'/'in the manner which' you ‘took up ... for yourself’/’got rid of’ the Egyptian yesterday?” (Acts 7:28)

(The messenger said to Cornelius: "Simon Peter) will talk words towards you, in/with which you will be saved, you and ‘every your’/’your whole’ house." (Acts 11:14)

The proconsul ... believed, being 'struck out'/overwhelmed on/with the teaching of the Lord. (Acts 13:12b)

(Paul and Silas) spoke (to the jailer): “Believe against the Lord Jesus, and you and your house will be saved.” And they talked (with) him (of) the saying of God (א*,B), together with all the ones in his habitation. ... And he with the whole house exulted, having believed (and believing) (in) God. (Acts 16:31-32,34b)

(A young man) was lifted/’lifted up’ (as) a dead (body). Having descended Paul ... spoke: “ ... His soul is in him.” ... But (in the ray/daybreak) they led/brought the boy living. (Acts 20:9b-10,12a)

(Ananias) spoke to (Saul): “ ... See up.” And (in) this hour (Saul) saw up into him. (Acts 22:13b)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

In (the Saying) is (א,*א) life. (John 1:4a)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 - about 1500

The sickness had released its hold exactly at the time when Jesus had pronounced his words. This led to the man's and his household's believing in Jesus. (Studiebibeln II:581; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

"If (the people) saw the miracle, would their eyes be opened?" (Borg asked). "Perhaps! If the wonder inspired with fear", (Maria answered). "Well, so they will get the wonder! Tomorrow at ten o'clock the omen will happen!" . . . (The following morning) they saw the people gathered together at the capes of the harbour. . . . Having come out on the hill, the women stopped like panic-stricken, when they in the clear and sunny morning saw a deathly pale colossal moon rise over a cemetary with black cypresses swimming on the surface of the sea. . . . The people having been given notice about the event of the wonder at the appointed time, as promised by the manager, looked at the appearing man with frightened but reverent eyes. . . . The matter already had got a precarious turn, and the manager resorted all his skill to explain the involuntary wonder, but in vain. . . . (The preacher) took up a Bible out of his pocket . . . reading: "And I looked when He broke the sixth seal. . . . The whole moon became like blood. And the stars of the sky fell to the earth. . . . Hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come and who is able to stand?" (August Strindberg "I havsbandet" p 116-122; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)


about 1500 and time before

Christ foretold many things. If those former things did not come to pass, then do not believe them; but if they all came to pass, why doubt concerning those that remain? ... He said that a grain of mustard seed is sown, so should the preaching (of the Gospel) be extended: and every day we see this running over the world. He said, that they who left father and mother, or brethren, or sisters, should have both fathers and mothers; And this we see fulfilled by facts. (Chrysostom, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers XIV:463)

With what reason should the prophet be called a prophet, unless he in spirit foresaw the future? ... One who sets forth in detail things yet to be, was rightly judged a prophet. Wherefore prophets were with good reason called from the first “seers”. (Hippolytus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers V:205)

Prophecy is a prediction of things future, that is, a setting forth beforehand of those things which shall be afterwards. (Irenaeus, The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol I, p 489)

Attention is often drawn to a rabbinical story: "Once the son of R. Gamaliel fell ill. He sent two scholars to R. Hanina b. Dosa to ask him to pray for him. When he saw them he went to an upper chamber and prayed for him. When he came down he said to them: Go, the fever has left him. They said to him: Are you a prophet? He replied: I am neither a prophet nor the son of a prophet, but I learnt this from experience. If my prayer is fluent in my mouth, I know that he is accepted: but if not, I know that he is rejected. They sat down and made a note of the exact moment. When they came to R. Gamaliel, he said to them: By the temple service! You have not been a moment too soon or too late, but so it happened: at that very moment the fever left him and he asked for water to drink" (Ber. 34b; Soncino edn. pp. 215-16). (Leon Morris "The Gospel according to John" p 255 footnote 109)

The family, not the individual, was the basic unit of Greek social life, and the family was understood in a wide sense. In addition to a man's wife and children it included any household slaves (who, in Athens at least, were introduced in the same way as a new bride, by being scattered with nuts and dried fruit, and thereafter allowed to share in the family religious observances). It also included a man's parents, though they might not live in the same house. (Maurice Pope "The Ancient Greeks - How they lived and worked" p 87)


Examples of other quoted authors in the Swedish version: Alf Ahlberg, Lars Ahlberg, Friedrich Ahlfeld, Gottfried Arnold, Margit Assarsson, Robert Banks, M. Baxter, Henrik Berg, Elisabeth Beskow, Oloph Bexell, Åke Boberg, Ingmar Brohed, Frank Buchman, Sven Danell, Lage Eklöv, J. Fjellstedt, Rolf Fredriksson, Adolphine Fogtmann, Emil Frommel, Einar Genitz, Hillis Grane, Carl Grimberg, Johan Gustafsson, Lennart Gustavsson, Dick Harrison, Gösta Hedberg, Johan Hellström, Otto Hermansson, Bengt Hägglund, Betty Janson, Ingrid Johansson, Eskil Jonsson, Amy Le Feuvre, Ludvig Lindberg, Gustaf Linder, Valborg Lindgärde, Hans Lindholm, Martin Luther, Margareta Malmgren, Thomas Mann, Carl Henrik Martling, Vilhelm Moberg, Wilhelm Möller, Richard Newton, Arvid Norberg, John Ongman, Göran Palm, Stina Palm, Lewi Pethrus, Hilding Pleijel, Edgar Allan Poe, Abraham Rundbäck, K.A. Rundbäck, Viktor Rydberg, Sixten Sandström, Erich Sauer, Sven-Åke Selander, Eliza M. Sherman, Håkan Sjögren, Martin Sjöstrand, Enock H. Skooglund, Kekke Stadin, Gunnar Stenvall, Ture Sällberg, Anton Tjechov, Fanny Tuxen, Mario Vargas Llosa, Arne Wirdenäs, Carl Fr. Wislöff, Elin Wägner, Manne Zettergren, Göran Åberg, Torsten Åhman.


My own comments and speculations:

The word “kompsos” (refined) does not occur in the rest of the Bible. This word together with the word “hypantaô” (go to meet) can be read in the light of Mark 5:1-20 (Luke 8:26-39). A man with an unclean spirit goes to meet Jesus. The result of the meeting is, that the man becomes “clothed and ... moderate” (Mark 5:15). The word “kompsos” means “refined”, but in classical Greek we can also translate by words as well-dressed, witty and clever. In John the boy is not only clothed but he is well-dressed and not only moderate but clever.

Observe the contrast between "the following day" in Egypt and "yesterday" in Cana. In Egypt there was a day between the deadly saying and the terrible work. Now there is a day between Jesus' quickening saying and the message of the wonderful result. Compare also with Moses, who yesterday killed a slave/boy of Pharaoh (Ex 2:14; Acts 7:28), while Jesus gave a boy of a kingly one life yesterday.

Concerning the foreknowledge of Jesus, see also John 1:49-50.

The seventh hour completes the beginning with the six jars at the first sign in Cana.

It is the son "down" in Capharnaum who is healed. Concerning the flies in Egypt we know that these often were disease carriers causing difficult epidemics. In Egypt the houses of the king and his slaves were struck. Now the kingly person and his slaves take life and faith.

Observe the following change from Mark to John concerning the healing of a fever-fire/fever (pyretos) in a habitation (oikia). In Mark 1:29-31 Jesus seizes the hand of the mother-in-law of Simon, in Matt 8:14-15 He touches her hand and in Luke 4:38-39 He heals in the nearness of her by His blaming words. In John 4:46-54 Jesus heals at a distance by His saying.

It is not probable that the faith described in v 53 was a faith in Jesus as the Son of God. In any case it is not a faith “into” Jesus. The emphasis on the truth of the prophecy (v 53) rather indicates that the faith refers to Jesus as a prophet among other prophets (cf. Irenaeus above) or possibly as the Prophet (cf. John 6:14-15).


Greek words:

angellô (bring a message) Sir 43:2(S); John 4:51 – 2 Sam 15:13(A); 18:11(A); Jer 4:15(B); John 20:18.

doulos (slave) (in the NT + examples in the OT) Matt 8:9; John 4:51 – Lev 25:44; 1 Sam 29:3; 2 Kings 5:6; 18:12; 2 Chron 6:23; Neh 9:14; Esther 4:17x-y(C28-29); Ps 27:9; 34:22(23); 69:36(37); 105:17,26; Jer 25:4; Amos 3:7; Judith 5:5; 6:3; 10:23; 11:4-5,16-17; 12:4,6,10; 13:1; 1 Macc 4:30; 2 Macc 1:2; 7:6,33; 8:29; Wisdom of Solomon 9:5; The Prayer of Azariah v 12,21,62; Matt 10:24-25; 13:27-28; 18:23,26-28,32; 20:27; 21:34-36; 22:3-4,6,8,10; 24:45-46,48,50; 25:14,19,21,23,26,30; 26:51; Mark 10:44; 12:2,4; 13:34; 14:47; Luke 2:29; 7:2-3,8,10; 12:37,43,45-47; 14:17,21-23; 15:22; 17:7,9-10; 19:13,15,17,22; 20:10-11; 22:50; John 8:34-35; 13:16; 15:15,20; 18:10,18,26; Acts 2:18; 4:29; 16:17; Rom 1:1; 6:16-17,20; 1 Cor 7:21-23; 12:13; 2 Cor 4:5, Gal 1:10; 3:28; 4:1,7; Eph 6:5-6,8; Phil 1:1; 2:7; Col 3:11,22; 4:1,12; 1 Tim 6:1; 2 Tim 2:24, Tit 1:1; 2:9; Philemon v 16; Jas 1:1; 1 Pet 2:16; 2 Pet 1:1; 2:19; Jude v 1; Rev 1:1; 2:20; 6:15; 7:3; 10:7; 11:18; 13:16; 15:3; 19:2,5,18; 22:3,6.

(h)ebdomos (seventh) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) John 4:52 – Esther 1:10; 2:16; Tobit 2:12; 1 Macc 6:53; 10:21; 2 Macc 6:11; 12:38; 15:4; Baruch 1:2; Bel and the Dragon v 40 (Theod); Heb 4:4; Jude v 14; Rev 8:1; 10:7; 11:15; 16:17; 21:20.

echthes (yesterday) (in the NT + one example in the Apocrypha) John 4:52; Acts 7:28 – Sir 38:22; Heb 13:8.

kompsos (refined) John 4:52. See My own comments and speculations.

oikia (habitation) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Esther 7:8; Matt 8.6,14; Mark 1:29; Luke 4:38; John 4:53; Acts 16:32 – Esther 1:22; Tobit 11:3,17; 13:18; 1 Macc 13:47; 2 Macc 2:29; 5:12; Sir 21:8,22; 26:16; 28:14; 29:24,27; Epistle of Jeremiah v 19-20,58; Susanna v 6(Theod). Matt 2:11; 5:15; 7:24-27; 9:10,23,28; 10:12-14; 12:25,29; 13:1,36,57; 17:25; 24:17,43; 26:6; Mark 2:15; 3:25,27; 6:4,10; 7:24; 9:33; 10:10,29; 12:40; 13:15,34-35; 14:3; Luke 5:29; 6:48-49; 7:6,37,44; 8:27,51; 9:4; 10:5,7,38(P3,א,*א,A); 15:8,25; 17:31; 18:29; 20:47; 22:10-11,54; John 8:35; 11:31; 12:3; 14:2; Acts 4:34; 9:11,17; 10:6,17,32; 11:11; 12:12; 17:5; 18:7; 1 Cor 11:22; 16:15; 2 Cor 5:1; Phil 4:22; 1 Tim 5:13; 2 Tim 2:20; 3:6; 2 John v 10.

pais (boy or girl) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Matt 8:13; Luke 15:26; John 4:51; Acts 20:12 – Esther 6:8; 7:4; Tobit 10:10; Judith 3:2; 7:12; 8:7; 16:12; 1 Macc 1:6; 3:41; 2 Macc 6:23; 15:12; Wisdom of Solomon 2:13; 12:7,20,25; 18:10; 19:6; Sir 33:26; Baruch 1:20; 2:20,24,28; 3:37. Matt 2:16; 8:6,8; 12:18; 14:2; 17:18; 21:15; Luke 1:54,69; 2:43; 7:7; 8:51,54; 9:42; 12:45; Acts 3:13,26; 4:25,27,30.

pynthanomai (inquire) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) 2 Macc 3:9; Luke 15:26, John 4:52 – Esther 6:4; Matt 2:4; Luke 18:36; John 13:24; Acts 4:7; 10:18,29; 21:33; 23:19-20,34.

pyretos (fever-fire) Deut 28:22; Matt 8:15; Mark 1:31; Luke 4:38-39; John 4:52 – Acts 28:8.

(h)ypantaô (go to meet) (in the NT + examples in the Apocrypha) Mark 5:2; John 4:51 – Tobit 7:1(BA); Wisdom of Solomon 6:16; Sir 12:17; 15:2; Matt 8:28; 28:9; Luke 8:27; 14:31; 17:12(א,*א); John 11:20,30; 12:18; Acts 16:16.


Additional studies: Sir 39:33; Luke 7:10; John 4:50; 13:19; Acts 16:14-15,31; 1 Cor 1:16; 1 Thess 2:13; Rev 9:15.

John Wilkinson "A Study of Healing in the Gospel according to John"; Scottish Journal of Theology 20 (1967): 442- .


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-16; 2010-12-07; 2013-11-30; 2014-10-10)

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4:54 This (is) again/furthermore (the) second sign, (which) Jesus made/did having come out of Judea into Galilee.

Word for word (14 words in the Greek text, the sequence of the words according to Sinaiticus) This again second made sign the Jesus having-come out-of the Judea into the Galilee.


The Former Revelation (preliminary translation):

(God said to Moses:) "If – according to the circumstances – (Israel) may not believe you, but/and not may listen to the first sign, they will believe you of/through the voice of the last sign. ... (And Aaron) made the signs opposite the people. And the people believed. (Ex 4:8,30b-31a, Greek OT)

(The Jew said to the foreign king:) “First … the king … , but second and/also the own fellow-citizens. (2 Macc 14:8a)


The Latter Revelation:

(Jesus said:) “This is the great and first commandment. * (א*, B) A second one (is) like this. (Matt 22:38b-39a)

Having again, 'out of second'/'for the second time', gone away (Jesus) prayed. (Matt 26:42a)


The Apostle, the eighth and one of the seven:

This beginning of the signs, Jesus made/did in Cana of Galilee, (a) first one (א*), and made His glory visible, and His disciples believed into Him. (John 2:11)


Exegetes, evangelists and others:

about 2000 and time before

The comment that this was the second sign attaches to the winewonder i Cana which is called "the first one" - or "introductory" - sign, 2:11. (LarsOlov Eriksson "För att ni skall tro. Johannesevangeliet" p 93; translation from the Swedish text: BG Ask)

Here (in Ex 4:8-9) already is the theme ... taken up by the evangelist: “Jesus did this as the beginning of the signs” (2:11) – “This was the second sign Jesus did” (4:54). (M-È Boismard "Moses or Jesus - An Essay in Johannine Christology" p 58)


My own comments and speculations:

Jesus did a beginning of the signs, a first one, in Cana (John 2:11). He also made the second sign in Cana (John 4:54). The first and the last sign in Egypt, like a beginning of the signs and the second sign in Cana (notice the conversion!), these two pairs of "hopeful" signs led to faith.

Concerning the wonder as a sign, see My own comments and speculations to John 21:4-7a.

Concerning “out of Judea into Galilee”, see My own comments and speculations to John 4:43-45.


Additional studies: Judges 6:36-40; Mark 12:29-31; John 2:23; 4:3,45-46.


(Original version 2007-12-01; revised version 2009-02-16; 2010-12-08; 2013-12-01; 2014-10-10)

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