Is the Samaritan Woman Like Hagar and Other Such Questions

The story of Hagar found in Genesis 16 reminds me of the Samaritan woman in John 4. Both accounts involve a woman who is (in some sense) cast out from the Abrahamic community. She is met by God in visible form at a spring/well, and responds by praising his seeing/knowledge about her life. Has anyone else commented on this parallel before, or is it a bit too “fanciful” to be helpful?

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Is the Parable of the Sower About Israel?

What credence is there to looking at the parable of the sower (Mt 13, Mk 4, Lk 8) as Jesus’ comment on the nation of Israel, not as a parable about the condition of an individual’s heart? Does the agricultural imagery for the nation of Israel like field, vineyard (‘field of noble quality’), garden, and harvest found in passages like Jeremiah 26, Isaiah 5 and 37, Psalm 80, or Ezekiel 16 indicate that I’ve been misreading this passage or been mistaught? How should we think about this parable in light of this?

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