John Calvin Complete Commentary - John 4:29 - 4:29

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John Calvin Complete Commentary - John 4:29 - 4:29

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29.See a man. As she here speaks doubtfully, she might appear not to have been greatly moved by the authority of Christ. I reply, as she was not qualified to discourse about such high mysteries, she endeavors, according to her feeble capacity, to bring her fellow-citizens to permit themselves to be taught by Christ. It was a very powerful stimulant which she employed to excite them, when she knew, by a sign which was not obscure or doubtful, that he was a prophet; for, since they could not form a judgment from his doctrine, this lower preparation was useful and well adapted to them. Having, therefore, learned that Christ had revealed to the woman things which were hidden, they infer from it that he is a Prophet of God. This having been ascertained, they begin to attend to his doctrine. But the woman goes farther; for she bids them inquire if he be not the Messiah, being satisfied if she could only persuade them to seek, of their own accord, what she had already found in Christ; for she knew that they would find more than she promised.

Who told me all things that ever I did. Why does she tell a lie, by saying that Christ told her all things ? I have already shown that Christ did not reprove her for a single instance of fornication, but that he placed before her, in a few words, many sins of her whole life. For the Evangelist has not minutely recorded every sentence, but states generally that Christ, in order to repress the woman’ talkativeness, brought forward her former and present life. Yet we see that the woman, kindled by a holy zeal, does not spare herself, or her reputation, to magnify the name of Christ: for she does not scruple to relate the disgraceful passages of her life.