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Read Introduction to John


21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father.


Jesus did not engage the religious conflict between the Samaritans and Jews about the proper place to worship. The issue would soon be irrelevant in any case.

21 Jesus said to her,

Jesus did not take up the woman’s attempt to deflect her situation to a religious dispute. Instead, He referred to future salvation where there will be no place of local worship. Her gambit of distraction opened an opportunity for Jesus to talk about the nature of God and the difference between genuine worship and pomp-and-circumstance worship. True worship does not depend on place because it is a spiritual function.


Jesus addressed the woman in an unadorned way.

believe Me,

Jesus said “believe Me” to establish the startling nature of what He was about to say. Jesus was about to make a statement that both Samaritan and Jewish places of worship would be obsolete. This was going to require the woman to believe something brand new to her thinking. Jesus was asking for her to believe the statement He was about to make.

the hour [time] is coming

The hour that was coming was the time after Jesus rose from the dead and launched the church. The ministry of the Holy Spirit would have a unique impact on worship in the church economy. The beginning of the church was a new marker in God’s economy.

when you will neither on this mountain [Mount Gerizim],

The woman was not only wrong about the place of worship but also the nature of worship.

nor in Jerusalem,

The temple was destroyed in Jerusalem in 70 AD.

worship the Father.

The only true, acceptable worship is to the Father, who is the great object of worship. At issue was not the “fathers” or ancestors of the Samaritans but the single Father upon whom people must place their focus.


It is more important to win a person than win an argument.


It is tempting when we share our faith to go into religious asides. Jesus did not allow this to happen to Him. The point of witnessing is not to win an argument but to bring one to the truth.