Connecting Beyond Categories


"When Jesus brings up the marriage of the [Samaritan woman], he’s bringing up her story. And her story is a very sensitive one.

Yet it may not be for the reason the church has often suggested—that this woman has loose morals, that she’s a sexual sinner...

Instead, there may be cultural and circumstantial factors at play. In recent years, we’ve started to have conversations between cultures, where we come together and read the Bible, and say “oh my gosh, we’re reading this differently.”

And this has happened recently with this story, where westerners are reading this alongside women from Africa. And these African women are saying, “oh... ...this woman’s infertile.”

And that may be a wise interpretation. We know the culture of the day. Women in this time had no capacity to initiate divorce... She didn’t have the power to choose her husband. She’s essentially the property of the husband, who acquires her to bear his children.

So either, she’s lost five husbands to death, or she’s been rejected multiple times…"

This week we talk about making connections by crossing boundaries, as Jesus does when he talks to a lone woman from an opposing tribe. Whether it’s the fierce boundaries between Jews and Samaritans, or the categories that divide us from our fellow humans today, there are ways to move toward connection. Listen below or read Leah’s notes for more: