"You are a Jew," said the woman. "How can You ask for a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)
I. THERE IS A GOOD SIDE TO PATRIOTISM WHICH, AS COMPARED WITH SELFISHNESS, IS A VIRTUE. The love of country is both greater and more difficult than the love of family or the love of self. It is morally elevating for a man to lose regard for his own interests in an absorbing desire for the welfare of his tribe or nation. Great deeds have]seen wrought, and great characters have been shaped, by love of fatherland.
II. THERE IS A BAD SIDE TO PATRIOTISM WHICH, AS CONTRASTED WITH PHILANTHROPY, IS A FAULT. The love of country may be magnified selfishness. When it renders a man insensible to the merits of those of alien blood or of different education, it warps the nature, and is often the occasion of injustice. Crimes have been done, and that sincerely, in the name of patriotism. Envy and jealousy, hatred, malice, and revenge, have sprung from spurious patriotism - that is, from a too exclusive regard to the interests or the honour of a nation.
III. CHRISTIANITY, WHILST NOT INIMICAL TO TRUE PATRIOTISM, INTRODUCES A GREAT DIVINE UNITING POWER INTO HUMAN SOCIETY.
1. The religion of Christ teaches the unity of the human race. It represents humanity as united by common origin and participation in a common nature.
2. The religion of Christ bases human unity upon the fatherhood of God. The family is one, because acknowledging one Head.
3. The Incarnation reveals and establishes this unity. Christ is the Son of man, the Friend of man, the Brother of man, the Saviour of man, the Lord of man. In him provision is made for the restoration of that unity which sin has broken.
IV. CHRISTIANITY THUS ENCOURAGES SUCH PATRIOTISM AS IS GOOD, AND CHECKS THE EVILS OFTEN CLOAKED UNDER THE NAME.
1. On the one hand, the religion of Christ fosters the feeling of duty which has its scope in political relationships. The duty nearest us is first, and, as we must not neglect our own household for the sake of strangers, so neither must we prefer foreigners and their interest to the welfare of our "kindred according to the flesh." A spurious philanthropy is a poor substitute for a genuine patriotism.
2. On the other hand, our religion forbids us to limit our regard to our immediate neighbours; and requires us to sweep with our spiritual vision the vast horizon of humanity. There is a homely proverb, "Charity begins at home;" to which a homely addition has been made, "but does not end there." The patriotism that takes us out of self is good; yet alone it is insufficient. It should broaden until our regard and our interest and our love reach far as the virtue of Christ's sacrifice, far as the range of Christ's gospel. Suspicions and contentions are alien from the Spirit of Christ. There is no limit to the comprehensiveness of the Saviour's pity; there should be no limit to the comprehensiveness of his people's love. - T.
How is it that Thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me?αἰτε1FC0;ιν is a word of petition as from an inferior to a superior, in this different from ἐρωτᾶν, which has more of equality in it. Christ therefore when He refers to that request of hers does not take up and allow her word. He says not, "Who is it that asketh," but who it is that saith (λέγων) to thee; while the asking is described as the proper attitude for her, "Thou wouldest have asked (ἤτησας) of Him." There lies often in such little details an implicit assertion of the unique dignity of His person, which it is very interesting and not unimportant to trace.
(Abp. Trench.)— The former word seems to explain the first part of our Lord's answer. She had come day by day to draw water at that well. Had she never known that that water was a gift of God? Had no thirst on a hot day or no failure of the spring taught her that? Was water a thing to "traffic in"?
(F. D. Maurice.)
(H. C. Trumbull, D. D.)2 Kings 17:24-41). In after times the Jews refused to acknowledge them in any way, and would not permit them to assist in building the second temple, though their refusal cost them many trials (Ezra 4.). Being cast off by the Jews, the Samaritans resolved to erect a temple of their own on Gerizim. The immediate occasion appears to have been the circumstances related by Nehemiah, that a sen of Joiada, the high priest, had become son-in-law to Sanballat, and had on this account been expelled from Jerusalem (Nehemiah 13:28). The date of the temple may thus be.fixed about B.C. 420. Shechem now became the metropolis of the Samaritans as a sect, and an asylum for all apostate and lax Jews (Joseph. "Antiq." 11:08-6). These things tended to foster enmity between the two nations, which resulted in the total destruction of the Temple of Gerizim by the Jews under John Hyrcanus. The very name Samaritan became a byword and a reproach among the Jews, just as the name Ye2 Kings 17:24; and Ezra 4:9), races of fierce habit and degraded faith, whose heathen practices, engrafted on the corrupt Judaism which lingered amongst the earlier Samaritans, brought down on the new colonies the especial Nemesis of God. Of these fierce tribes there were some who, Cuthites in name, were of the family of the Royal Scythians, or Gordyans, from the Gordiaean mountains, whom in.subsequent times the Greeks knew by the name of Carduchi (Xen. "Anab."), and with whom we are familiar as Koords. Some of these were settled in the Lebanon, and from them it has been said that the Druses spring, and draw the tenets of an ancient but unholy worship.
(Lord Carnarvon's "Druses of the Lebanon.)
(J. R. Macduff, D. D.)
(Bp. Ryle.)Josephus writeth that at Samaria was a sanctuary opened by Sanballat for all renegade Jews, etc. The Jews therefore hated the presence, the fire, the fashion, the books of a Samaritan. Neither was there any hatred lost on the Samaritan's part, for if he had but touched a Jew he would have thrown himself into the nearest water, clothes and all.
(John McNeill.)souls: — People when they talk of "the working classes" think that they have described the whole thing with one touch. They imagine that, like the "enter such and such a one" in Shakespeare's stage directions, when they have said "the working classes," then everything by way of definition that is to be said, is said. They label the article, so to speak, and then expect you to understand all about it. How difficult it is indeed to bridge across the chasm between class and class I But more difficult it is to remember that "the working class," or any class, is made up of individual souls. Our dear Lord did not speak to classes only. Jesus spoke to souls. He took men one by one, and each finite creature with his infinite future, each immortal being with his own history, his own work, his own sins, his own feelings, his own sorrows, was an object of tender interest to Jesus Christ.
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