From that city many of the Samaritans believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, “He told me all the things that I have done.” So when the Samaritans came to Jesus, they were asking Him to stay with them; and He stayed there two days. Many more believed because of His word; and they were saying to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves and know that this One is indeed the Savior of the world.”
4-Point Calvinist, Ron Rhodes: “It is certain that when the Samaritans called Jesus ‘the Savior of the world,’ they were not thinking of the world of the elect.” (The Case for an Unlimited Atonement, emphasis mine)
Question: What did the Samaritans mean by,
“The Savior of the world”?
Answer: When the Samaritans declared Jesus
to be “the Savior of the world,” they had no
concept of Him being only the Savior of the
elect. The Samaritans weren’t even part of
God’s “chosen people” Israel. (Deuteronomy
7:6) If the Samaritans did have any concept of
Election, it would be that they were not it. So
when they declared that Jesus was “The
Savior of the world,” they meant “world” in
the sense of everyone.
Question: To what did the Samaritans attribute their belief that Jesus was the Messiah?
A) On account of woman at the well?
B) A “secret drawing” viz. Irresistible Grace?
C) Having seen and heard Jesus for themselves?
John Calvin: “Christ proclaimed that the salvation he brought was for the whole world, so that they would more clearly understand that it also belonged to them. For Christ did not say that they were heirs according to law, as was the case with the Jews, but he taught them that he had come to admit strangers into God’s family and to bring peace to those ‘who were far away’ (Ephesians 2:17).” (John: Calvin, The Crossway Classic Commentaries, p.112, emphasis mine)
Salvation was brought to the whole world because God “so loved the world.” (John 3:16) And if God so loved the world, the Calvinistic doctrine of Unconditional Reprobation implodes.
Question: Why did Jesus waste His time with a despised, immoral Samaritan woman?
Answer: Because Jesus doesn’t consider anyone to be a waste of time. In fact, if there was a type of Election in which it was eternally decreed who would be created for the purpose of comprising an alleged, eternal flock of the Father, it would be the ones who did not make the cut, that Jesus would want to save the most, and who He would save first. That’s the Jesus of the Gospels who states: “What man among you, if he has a hundred sheep and has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open pasture and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? When he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.” (Luke 15:4-7)
While salvation is indeed to the Jew first, and then the Gentile (Romans 1:16), that’s from the perspective that both camps are lost sheep, and in need of salvation, despite Israel’s election. In contrast, with an alleged, eternal flock of the Father type Election, none in that flock could ever, genuinely, be considered lost.
Here is a Blog discussion on John 4:42.