So he came to a city of Samaria, called Sychar, near the field that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. 6 Jacob’s well was there, and so Jesus, wearied as he was with his journey, sat down beside the well. It was about the sixth hour. – John 4:5-6
Jesus rested. That’s what John tells us about Jesus as he journeyed across Samaria. He was weary from his travels, and he rested. Sometimes we can overlook the human side of Jesus, and, quite frankly, the gospels don’t tell us much about Jesus’ humanity. In John we read that Jesus was tired, that Jesus wept over the death of his friend Lazarus, and that Jesus cried out on the cross, “I thirst.” These are about the only glimpses we see of Jesus’ humanity. All of this can cause us to consider what it means that Jesus was fully human and fully divine. After all, if Jesus did not feel human emotions or struggle with the aches and pains of life, then surely he could not be like us. Most of us could negotiate life effectively if we always knew the future, always knew the right answer, and only had to speak a word for a miracle to be performed.
But we read that Jesus grew weary under the noonday sun and he rested. John tells us that Jesus shared our human experience, but he did so without sharing our human nature. That is, his orientation was not toward self-advancement or personal pleasure. His motivation was pure love – love for God and love for others. It is his nature that makes Jesus divine, and his miraculous powers were simply manifestations of God’s work through him. Of course, even here we find help for living. When Jesus was weary from the world, he rested in his father’s care and keeping. His was not an anxious rest, a fitful rest. His was more a true Sabbatical rest, resting in God. Likewise, Jesus rested in faith and trust. It is not by accident that John tells us that Jesus sat down by Jacob’s Well. Jesus was resting in the faith of all who had come before. It is to this same rest that Jesus calls us when he says, “Come unto me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
Lord Jesus, I know you must grow weary with me. Continue your work in me that I may live like you, love like you, and even rest like you. Amen.
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” – Matthew 11:28
A Bible study devotional by Gorman Houston