There is no indication on the MS of this sermon relating to where or when it was preached, though the content suggests Charles's 'post-Pentecost' period. Other extant sources provide no further illumination. Charles's journal indicates that he expounded 'the woman of Samaria' several times (15 February 1739; 11 March 1739; 27 August 1739; 14 September 1739; 19 May 1740; 24 September 1742; 27 September 1742), but the content of this sermon cannot be described as an 'exposition of the woman of Samaria'. It is reasonable to presume, however, that this and the exposition of the wider passage from John 4 may have overlapped.
The rather untidy appearance of the MS gives grounds for hope that here we have an original Charles Wesley composition and need not think in terms of Charles's copying it from some other source. There are numerous corrections and deletions, all of which are indicated in the text printed below, an indication, it seems, that Charles is composing rather than transcribing. Some of the evidence for this hypothesis has already been outlined in Chapter 4 . As further slight evidence in support of the originality of this sermon we might note also that John is not known to have preached from this text. 1 Charles is unlikely, then, to have copied from that source.
The sermon has never before been published, though its existence has been noted in passing by some other scholars. 2 The text given below has been transcribed from the MS, now held at the John Rylands University Library of Manchester. 3 The MS comprises sixteen leaves, fifteen of which are written recto only. The last is written verso also, an indication, it appears, that Charles was seeking to complete the text of the sermon without the necessity of adding extra leaves to the MS. The final paragraph is in shorthand. The material in this paragraph is not sensitive; hence it is probably in shorthand simply to save space, rather than for concealment from the eyes of an unwanted public (which is probably the reason for Charles's sudden switch to shorthand in Sermon 15, on Matt. 5: 20).
The remark made on the top of the MS, apparently by 'W.P.', the probable editor of the 1816 edition, that the sermon was 'not finished' (a remark repeated by Albin), 4 seems not to be accurate. The sermon does end rather abruptly, but the physical evidence suggests that this was as a result of Charles running short of space, not time. 5 This then, unlike Sermon 13 on Acts 20: 7, is in all probability a sermon which Charles finished composing