Summary: Who is the Good Samaritan?
After World War Two the Allies helped former enemies Germany and Japan rebuild. The hatred did not last forever. Thanks in large part to Allied aid, former enemies became close friends and two of the world’s strongest economies were given life.
Let’s look at how even enemies can become good neighbors?
Let’s examine the Parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37 and see how it applies to us.
Luke 10:25 One day an expert in religious law stood up to test Jesus by asking him this question: “Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 Jesus replied, “What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?” 27 The man answered, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” 28 “Right!” Jesus told him. “Do this and you will live!” 29 The man wanted to justify his actions, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
30 Jesus replied with a story: “A Jewish man was traveling from Jerusalem down to Jericho, and he was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him up, and left him half dead beside the road. 31 “By chance a priest came along. But when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by. 32 A Temple assistant walked over and looked at him lying there, but he also passed by on the other side. 33 “Then a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw the man, he felt compassion for him. 34 Going over to him, the Samaritan soothed his wounds with olive oil and wine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. 35 The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, ‘Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I’ll pay you the next time I’m here.’ 36 “Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?” Jesus asked. 37 The man replied, “The one who showed him mercy.” Then Jesus said, “Yes, now go and do the same.”
New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois
Who is Our Neighbor?
Politicians tell us that the illegal alien, the Muslim refugee and the unborn baby are not our neighbors. But if we are truly Christians, Jesus defines who our neighbors are not politicians. Politicians encourage prejudice but not Jesus. Jesus places no limits on neighborliness. We may want to help our neighbors within our own towns, but not in another state or country. Yet, the Gospel must go in word and deed to the whole world. We want to limit our responsibility to others but our responsibility has no bounds. Neighbor literally means someone near but, in the Good Samaritan Jesus explains neighbor as any person “irrespective of race or religion with whom we live or whom we chance to meet”.