John 4 contains the famous conversation between the woman at the well and Jesus. The conversation between Jesus and the woman starts off as a request from Jesus to her for water. This conversation is a model for followers of Christ. We should be intentional about waiting for others in public settings for an opportunity to engage in conversation. We should then use that conversation and turn it toward Christ and the Gospel message.
Jesus started the conversation on purpose and he directed it toward more and more spiritual detail even telling the woman based on the conversation that he is the Messiah. We also should be initiating conversations to direct people to Christ.
27 Just then his disciples came back. They marveled that he was talking with a woman, but no one said, “What do you seek?” or, “Why are you talking with her?” 28 So the woman left her water jar and went away into town and said to the people, 29 “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” 30 They went out of the town and were coming to him. John 4:27-29 ESV
The outcome of this conversation was spirit directed and miraculous as any physical healing or resurrection from the dead.
39 Many Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me all that I ever did.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they asked him to stay with them, and he stayed there two days. 41 And many more believed because of his word. 42 They said to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is indeed the Savior of the world.” John 4:39-42 ESV
A mentor once told me that the best way to build a church was to study the words of Jesus in the four gospels and to study the book of Acts. In that same way it is instructive for all Christians to study how Jesus moved this dialog with the woman from a simple request for water to a life changing revelation of salvation.
Jesus: 7 A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” 8 (For his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.) John 4:7-8 ESV
Woman: 9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) John 4:9 ESV
Jesus: 10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” John 4:10 ESV
Woman: 11 The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? John 4:11 ESV
Jesus: 13 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again.[b] The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:13-15 ESV
Woman: 15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water.” John 4:15 ESV
Jesus: 16 Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” John 4:16 ESV
Woman: 17 The woman answered him, “I have no husband.”
Jesus: Jesus said to her, “You are right in saying, ‘I have no husband’; 18 for you have had five husbands, and the one you now have is not your husband. What you have said is true.” John 4:17-18 ESV
Woman: 19 The woman said to him, “Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you say that in Jerusalem is the place where people ought to worship.” John 4:19-20 ESV
Jesus: 21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. 24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:21-24 ESV
Woman: 25 The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things.” John 4:25 ESV
Jesus: 26 Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.” John 4:26 ESV