I Have Met a Man
If someone walked up to me and told me about my life—the secret and non-secret things—I would probably get defensive and yell, “Amebo, get away from me. It's none of your business”, before stopping to ask, “How do you know my secrets?”
Before the Samaritan woman in John 4 met Jesus at the well, I imagine that the whole town probably knew her business and some folks had probably taunted her about it. I imagine that she’d probably yelled at some people to get away from her in the past. Yet, when Christ talked to her, she ran home with excitement, announcing, “Come, see a man who told me all I ever did.”
What made the difference is how Christ talked to her. He always walked and talked in love. And that's why she could be excited, knowing her life would never be the same again.
I used to hate the Infinity song, ‘Jesus Knows’. It sounded condescending and like constant condemnation for sin. One morning in the car, I was listening to it, instead of skipping it, and I got excited. “All those things you think you are hiding from someone, Jesus knows.” He knows the snarky thoughts I have. He knows the horrible things I've done even when I thought I was a good person by moral standards. He knows it all, and He still loves me.
I had a Samaritan woman moment that morning, like, yo, I have met a man who knows everything I have ever done and still loves me! How exciting is that? He still calls me precious and honoured in his sight.
Jesus knows. I wanted to run around announcing, like that woman, I have met a man who told me all I ever did. And He loves me more than people who have only ever seen me at my best. I have met a Man who is the vastness of God’s love to man, to me.
This is the joy that Christ brings when He comes into our lives because He never comes from a place of condemnation. Condemnation happened at the fall of man in the garden. Christ is restoration to peace with the Father.
He is love and justification. Christ has no condemnation for us. Only love. Unfailing love. The type of love that leaves no room for shame and gets you excited.
In the midst of this, I started to think about how the way we speak to others can either cause them to shut us down and yell, “It’s none of your business” or it can take away their shame and get them excited for more. When I was not a Christian, I think I had more moments of the former in my contact with Christianity. Now, I can only hope I am not guilty of it too.
I want to be like Christ in my speech. I want to talk about the love of Christ for people. Not only did he have no condemnation for the Samaritan woman, he refused to be drawn into an age-long argument about whose worship was right—Jews or Samaritans. He didn't get distracted from the moment of showing love with needless arguments. He spoke the truth of what true worship is and moved on to His message of love.
Christ had no condemnation for the woman so who am I to push a message of condemnation and punishment instead of one of love and salvation?
My favourite illustration of the message of ‘no condemnation’ is in John 8, when they brought an adulterous woman to Christ. In verses 10 and 11, Jesus looks up, and the most loving conversation follows:
“Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?
“No one, sir.”
“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”
Come, see a man who knows all you’ve ever done, and loves you.