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A Synopsis of Paper 143: Going Through Samaria

Jesus and his apostles spent the month of July near Bethel, Arimathea, and Thamna. During the first half of August, they preached in the Greek cities of Archelais and Phasaelis. Here they had their first experience with a group that was almost exclusively Roman, Greek, and Syrian, and the apostles met with new objections to the Master's teachings. These gentiles told the apostles that Jesus' words were fit only for weaklings and slaves.

Jesus said, "Do you, my chosen apostles, resemble weaklings? Did John look like a weakling? Do you observe that I am enslaved by fear? The Paradise ascent is the supreme adventure of all time, the rugged achievement of eternity. The service of the kingdom on earth will call for all the courageous manhood that you and your coworkers can muster. You are the first volunteers of a long line of sincere believers in the gospel of this kingdom who will astonish all mankind by their heroic devotion to these teachings."

It was mid-August when the apostles set out for the city of Sychar in Samaria. It was a test of loyalty for the apostles to visit Samaria, as there had been bad blood between Jews and Samaritans for more than six hundred years. During this trip the apostles learned to overcome much of their prejudice against Samaritans.

At Jacob's well near Sychar, Jesus encountered a woman named Nalda. During this conversation Jesus told Nalda, "You have received that living water, and a new joy will spring up within your soul, and you shall become a daughter of the Most High." That evening Nalda brought a crowd from Sychar to hear Jesus speak about self-mastery as the measure of spiritual development.

The apostles never ceased to be shocked by Jesus' willingness to talk with women. It was difficult for Jesus to convince them that even so-called immoral women possessed souls and could become daughters of God.

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