Book Review Part 7 of Dan Lioy’s “Jesus as Torah in John 1-12”; Chp. 4 “Jesus as Torah in John 2-4: The Samaritan Woman’s Conversation with Jesus as Torah (John 4:1-26)”

Posted: January 10, 2008 by Rick Hogaboam in Biblical Studies, Book Reviews, Christology
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The Samaritan Woman’s Conversation with Jesus as Torah (John 4:1-26) 

Lioy makes two suggestions of how Jesus is seen as Torah in His encounter with the Samaritan woman that I find intriguing. First off, Lioy points to Ng (2001), who in “Water Symbolism in John: An Eschatological Interpretation”, examines the use of “water”  to refer to “Torah” in Jewish literature. I was unaware of this and really need to read Ng’s work to better asses this possible connection. Even so, I doubt that Jesus has “Torah” in mind or that the Samaritan woman thought such when Jesus offered “living water” to her. I will have to research further into this because I do acknowledge that “water” shows up with the Can miracle, with Jesus’ discourse to Nicodemus, and again here to the Samaritan woman.

The second connection that Lioy makes with Jesus as Torah is the omniscience Jesus evidences in His discourse with the Samaritan woman. Lioy states, “The omniscient Torah of God affirmed the truthfulness of the woman’s statement, adding that she had been divorced five times and was now living immorally…” (p. 99). 

The Torah that had been given to Israel said much about God and His desire for His people, while this living Torah is able to peer into the heart of this Samaritan woman and reveal all. Jesus is the living breathing Word of God who knows all and reveals all that He so chooses.


  1. aanvals says:

    Have you made the connection of the woman’s 5 husbands?

    The 5 husbands representing the 5 books of torah, but Jesus is offering living water (living torah). To move from flesh to spirit; from the law written in stone to the Living Water of Jesus.

    So the question remains; Who does the woman represent, who does the towns people who believed represent? What was the significance of Jesus sitting next to the well?


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