Saturday, November 1, 2014

Jacob's Well

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Hello friends, The following is Jacob's well. 
This is the well where our Lord Jesus Christ once asked a Samaritan woman for a drink, before she believed in Him. 
Jacob's well is one of the few sites which has a location that is agreed upon by Jews, Christians, Muslims, and Samaritans alike. 
Wells are unmovable, so we can be sure that this well marks the precise spot where Jesus sat down and talked to the Samaritan woman. I will now show you two articles, one on the finding and another on a visitor's experience visiting the site (Credit given at the bottom of each article :D)
I must note that a church was built on the site and there are lots of statues around the well now-days. Remember we are commanded not to have idols, not to venerate statues of any kind; This is idolatry and goes against The 2nd Commandment.


4 When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John,
2 (Though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples,)
3 He left Judaea, and departed again into Galilee.
4 And he must needs go through Samaria.
5 Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.
6 Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.
7 There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.
8 (For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.)
9 Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.
10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.
11 The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water?
12 Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle?
13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:
14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
15 The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.
16 Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither.
17 The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband:
18 For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly.
19 The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.
20 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.
21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father.
22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.
23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
25 The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.
26 Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.
27 And upon this came his disciples, and marvelled that he talked with the woman: yet no man said, What seekest thou? or, Why talkest thou with her?
28 The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men,
29 Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?
30 Then they went out of the city, and came unto him.
31 In the mean while his disciples prayed him, saying, Master, eat.
32 But he said unto them, I have meat to eat that ye know not of.
33 Therefore said the disciples one to another, Hath any man brought him ought to eat?
34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.
35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.
36 And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together.
37 And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth.
38 I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.
39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.
40 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days.
41 And many more believed because of his own word;
42 And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.
43 Now after two days he departed thence, and went into Galilee.
44 For Jesus himself testified, that a prophet hath no honour in his own country.
45 Then when he was come into Galilee, the Galilaeans received him, having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the feast: for they also went unto the feast.
46 So Jesus came again into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum.
47 When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judaea into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the point of death.
48 Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe.
49 The nobleman saith unto him, Sir, come down ere my child die.
50 Jesus saith unto him, Go thy way; thy son liveth. And the man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him, and he went his way.
51 And as he was now going down, his servants met him, and told him, saying, Thy son liveth.
52 Then enquired he of them the hour when he began to amend. And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.
53 So the father knew that it was at the same hour, in the which Jesus said unto him, Thy son liveth: and himself believed, and his whole house.
54 This is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judaea into Galilee.

Praise The Lord JESUS CHRIST!!!

Jacob's Well

"Jacob's well is one of the authentic Christian sites: its identity with what is told in the New Testament is not subject to doubt" (Madrich Yisra'el Vol. 8, p. 384). 

There are a number of reasons for this certainty, but the basic one is that wells do not move, and this is the only well in the region. Indeed, it is strange to find a well here, since there are many springs nearby. In the 1860's and 70's, British explorers heard water gushing everywhere in the pass between Ebal and Gerizim, where there are more than twenty springs. Remains of water-driven flour mills are visible there. According to John 3:23, the Baptist "was baptizing in Aenon near Salim." Salim is the name of a village three miles east of Shechem, and Aenon means springs. "Aenon near Salim" may have been four large springs on the eastern edge of Mt. Gerizim. 

John's Gospel locates the well at a town called Sychar, whose name is preserved in the village of Askar, a kilometer to the north. Sychar too had a spring. The Mishnah calls it Ein Sychar, "the spring of Sychar." (And see G.A. Smith, pp. 240 - 246.) 

With so many springs, why would anyone go to the trouble of digging a vertical shaft 137 feet into the earth?

Yet someone did, for here it is. 

The British explorers quote a medical missionary, Dr. H.J. Bailey: "The respective qualities of various supplies of water are a favourite topic with Easterners, and in a hot climate, where other beverages are almost unknown, the natives are great connoisseurs. From the nature of the soil the springs at Nablus are mostly of very hard water, 'heavy' as the natives say. Not unjustly they attribute many of their complaints to this, and long for the 'light' waters of Gaza and other places. Now Jacob's Well has among them the repute of containing cool, palatable, refreshing water, free from the deleterious qualities of their other supplies. Frequently I have been told that after a hearty meal (which with them is appalling) a draught of this water will disperse the feeling of abnormal fulness in a short time. The fountain at El-'Askar gushes from the limestone of Mount Ebal, and is of particularly hard or 'heavy' water. ....It is not uncommon in the East to send a great distance for drinking water, especially among those who can afford to do so" (Palestine Exploration Fund Quarterly, 1897, p. 149 ff., quoted in G.A. Smith, pp. 245-46).

It was the quest for better water, then, that may have led someone to dig this well, just as it led the woman to travel more than half a mile for it, passing springs on her way.

John 4:5-6 locates the well in Sychar, "near the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph; and Jacob's well was there." Both Genesis 33:19 and Joshua 24:32 refer to this plot of ground. Despite the circuitous drive we take today, the well is a stone's throw from Tel Balata, ancient Shechem, and the traditional Joseph's Tomb. We might be tempted with St. Jerome to identify Sychar with Shechem, but two of his predecessors, Eusebius of Caesarea and the Pilgrim of Bordeaux, take care to distinguish the two while placing them very near.

In any case, there simply is no other well in the region. The Byzantines built a cross-shaped church with the well in its center. Its remains became the crypt of a Crusader church. The Greek Orthodox restored this crypt in the nineteenth century: in it we stand when we visit the well today.  In 1914 they began to rebuild the church itself, but their money came largely from Tzarist Russia, and the revolution stopped the flow. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990, they have resumed the work.

"The well is deep," said the woman. It is about 115 feet (35 meters) to the surface of the water and 137 feet (42 m.) to the bottom.



The well, from which Jesus once asked a Samaritan woman for a drink, is fed by underground springs, and its water is fresh and cool. Because the water is moving and not from a cistern, the ancients called it "living water" -- a term to which Jesus gave a new and special meaning.

We enter the arched opening through the cut-stone wall into a courtyard, where tree-blossoms, shrubs and a variety of flowers greet our vision. A welcomed breeze softens the dry heat of Israel's West Bank in June. In the center of the courtyard a concrete walkway leads to a covered stairway at the opposite end.

We descend the circular stone stairs 15 or 20 feet below ground level to a vaulted room, floored with stone mosaics and decorated in Greek Orthodox style. Looking around the small chamber to the side opposite the stairs, we see it. This is Jacob's Well -- Bir Ya'qub -- where Jesus encountered a Samaritan woman and discussed the spiritual "water" which quenches forever the soul's deepest thirst (John 4:1-42).

The Orthodox caretaker watches as Saliba, our Syriac Christian guide, turns the hand-crank and lowers the bucket into the soft limestone well. The well bottom has varied in depth through the centuries, from 240 feet in A.D. 670 to 67 feet in A.D. 1881. It was "very deep" in Jesus' day (John 4:11). Our guide feeds out what he says are 125 feet of rope before the bucket touches water, then begins the arduous task of raising the bucket back to the surface. Several of us gather around and drink from a common brass cup. This well, from which Jesus once asked a drink, is fed by underground springs, and its water is fresh and cool. Because the water is moving and not from a cistern, the ancients called it "living water" -- a term to which Jesus gave a new and special meaning.

Although called "Jacob's Well" from Jesus' time forward (John 4:6, 12), the Old Testament does not mention its origin. The Genesis saga does say that Jacob purchased land at the village of Shechem, modern Nablus, very near this Samarian site of Sychar, now known as Askar (Gen. 23:18-20; see Joshua 24:32; John 4:5). But the authenticity of this well is undisputed. Samaritans, Muslims, Christians and Jews all agree that this is the place where the story took place which is recorded in John chapter four. We reflect for several minutes on what happened here, almost 2,000 years ago, then climb the steps back to the courtyard and exit to our bus. As we leave, we view Mount Gerazim not far away, atop of which are the ruins of the Samaritan Temple. But that is a story for another day.


1 comment:

  1. By that well, the ancient station
    Whither Abram's flocks were driven ,
    By the jar whose restoration
    To the Saviour's lips was given ;
    By the fountain, pure and vernal.
    Thence its present bounty spending,—
    Overflowing, bright, eternal.
    Watering the world's unending !