What does John 4:16 mean?
ESV: Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.”
NIV: He told her, 'Go, call your husband and come back.'
NASB: He *said to her, 'Go, call your husband and come here.'
CSB: "Go call your husband," he told her, "and come back here."
NLT: Go and get your husband,' Jesus told her.
KJV: Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither.
Verse Commentary:
In Matthew 13:20–21, Jesus refers to soil which is too hard to allow seeds to grow roots. In the context of the gospel, and this particular woman, her heart is still hardened and not open to spiritual truth. How does a person make hard soil better suited to seeds? By breaking it. In a compassionate, but very forceful way, Jesus is about to break the hard soil of this woman's heart, by pointing out her sin.

This begins with asking a much more "typical" question for that time and culture. Unrelated men and women rarely spoke in public, so if Jesus was going to have more interaction with the woman, it would make sense for Him to demand her husband be present.

As seen in the prior verses, the Samaritan woman seems to be sharp. She responds to Jesus with a certain amount of insight (John 4:11–12), and at least a hint of sarcasm (John 4:15). Her next remark, in verse 17, is her most curt response in the entire conversation. Banter or not, she seems to sense that it is better not to lie, not to this man.
Verse Context:
John 4:5–26 describes one of the most famous moments in Jesus' earthly ministry. Here, He converses with a Samaritan woman. This particular woman is not only an ''unclean'' Samaritan, but an outcast among her own people. She attempts to avoid Jesus' teachings, giving flippant and sarcastic answers. Despite that, and despite knowing all about her sin, Jesus encourages her with the love of God. This breaks through her hard heart; as a result, many others are brought to meet Christ. The disciples are also taught a valuable lesson about the purpose of their mission.
Chapter Summary:
Jesus speaks to a Samaritan woman who is drawing water from a well. Jesus both confronts her about her sin, and comforts her with the truth of the gospel. In particular, He explains that even though He knows her sins, He still seeks after her, and those like her. The woman returns to town, eventually bringing many people to meet Jesus. The disciples, meanwhile, have to be reminded of the purpose of their mission. Jesus also heals the son of a government official in a way that demonstrates the importance of trusting faith, rather than reliance on spectacle.
Chapter Context:
John chapter 4 continues the use of contrast. Jesus goes from conversing with an educated, powerful, prestigious man to talking to an outcast, unlearned, self-conscious woman. The combination of this passage, along with Jesus' conversation with Nicodemus, makes an important spiritual point. The gospel is for all people, in all places, and all times. Christ can reach each person exactly where he or she needs to be reached.
Book Summary:
The gospel of John was written by the disciple John, decades later than the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. The author assumes that a reader is already familiar with the content of these other works. So, John presents a different perspective, with a greater emphasis on meaning. John uses seven miracles—which he calls “signs”—in order to prove that Jesus is, in fact, God incarnate. Some of the most well-known verses in all of the Bible are found here. None is more famous than the one-sentence summary of the gospel found in John 3:16.
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