Take a moment to read the scripture below and we’ll pick up our conversation after.
The Parable of the Good Samaritan
25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.”
29 But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side.32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34 He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him.35 And the next day he took out two denarii[a] and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36 Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.” – Luke 10:25-37 (ESV)
“And who is my neighbor?”
We like to think of our neighbors as those who are like us. Those that:
- Look like us
- Wear the same types of clothes
- Eat the same types of foods
- Enjoy the same types of hobbies
- Maybe even have been raised/brought up in a similar manner
But Jesus pushes far past the similarities. His story above reminds me that I’d like to think that I’m the Samaritan. More often than not, I’m more so the priest and the Levite in the story, avoiding those that don’t look like me and continuing on my way. We crave the safety of our selected neighbors and tribes.
Lord, push me past that which I deem safe.