John 4:6 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 4:6, NIV: "Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about noon."

John 4:6, ESV: "Jacob’s well was there; so Jesus, wearied as he was from his journey, was sitting beside the well. It was about the sixth hour."

John 4:6, KJV: "Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour."

John 4:6, NASB: "and Jacob’s well was there. So Jesus, tired from His journey, was just sitting by the well. It was about the sixth hour."

John 4:6, NLT: "Jacob's well was there; and Jesus, tired from the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime."

John 4:6, CSB: "Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, worn out from his journey, sat down at the well. It was about noon."

What does John 4:6 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

One of the most unique aspects of the gospel is the fact that Jesus was fully, completely God, and yet fully, completely human as well. He experienced the same moral struggles as other men (Hebrews 4:15). He had to battle spiritual issues, as do all men (Matthew 4:3–4). And, He had to put up with the limitations of a human body. When Christ spoke about being weary, He could speak from personal experience. Verses such as this contradict the claim that Jesus' body was not human, or that He was not truly incarnated.

John refers to the time of day as "the sixth hour." There is some debate over which time system John uses in this Gospel. Roman time, which begins at noon, would place this incident at around 6:00 p.m. This is the most likely interpretation. However, one can see that how John's clock is interpreted differs from version to version, and some Bible translations are more modern in their mention of the time. The other possibility is that John is using the same time-system as the other Gospels, which start the day at 6:00 a.m. Therefore, Jesus is either sitting at the well at noon, or at 6:00 p.m. Either way, this is hot and bothersome time of day to lug water.

The inconvenient hour, in fact, is part of the background to this story. It gives us some clues about the Samaritan woman speaking with Jesus in the next verses. She not only comes alone, she comes during one of the worst times of day to tote around a water pot. Given her immoral lifestyle (John 4:18), she was probably not welcomed by the other women in town. She had to draw water alone and at less ideal times.

Genesis 33:18–20 and Genesis 48:21–22 explain how this section of land came to Joseph through Jacob.