Summary: A familiar passage with such a profound truth.
LOVING GOD…LOVING OTHERS
Luke 10:25-37 ILL- In April of 1998 in our nation’s capital Military Police Maj. Odie Butler said he was northbound on I395 about 10 minutes before 6 a.m. when he came upon an accident near Alexandria. Amid the debris of a single-truck accident, a person was on the highway, having been thrown from the vehicle. Butler said he didn’t take time to think. He stopped his car and got out to help the victim. "At first, I couldn’t tell if [the victim] was male or female, there was so much blood ... [then] I saw she had on female tennis shoes. At the same time, traffic was rolling through," Butler said. Not having a cell phone, Butler said he was hoping someone would call 911. There wasn’t much else he could do for the victim. "She was on her back with her left leg tucked under and her right leg near the guardrail," Butler said. "She was spitting up blood and I knew she needed medical assistance. There was nothing I could do except stand there. She had a big laceration on her right hand, her whole face was covered in blood and she was having trouble breathing. Meanwhile motorists were passing by the accident " trying to weave through the debris and get on out of there," Butler said. Some made angry gestures. Butler said one driver told him to "get the ‘stuff’ off the side of the road." "Some folks don’t want to get involved ...[or] they’re in a hurry ...," Butler said.
After about five minutes, Butler said, another motorist, an Air Force civilian employee, Larry Meade, stopped and used his cell phone to call for assistance. About 10 minutes later, the woman was flown by helicopter to a Washington-area hospital.
Meade said that he was prepared for the carnage associated with the crash, but the anger of the other motorists shocked him. Said Meade, "People put appointments and memos above someone’s life." According to Butler, what he did on the interstate was "the Christian thing to do." In Matthew 22:34-40 is asked a question, "Which is the great commandment in the law?" Jesus gave the same answer as the he gave the lawyer in our text. Love God. Love your neighbor. He then states that all the law hangs on these two commandments. He makes love for God and our neighbor the foundation of moral responsibility. These elements are increasingly rare in our society. We tend to live with the attitude, "What’s yours is mine, if I can take it from you." Our society increasingly acts as if men owe nothing to their neighbors. We think only of our own lives, ignoring the needs of others. ILL- Here is the story of David Cash. Last year, Cash and a friend, Jeremy Strohmeyer, were in Las Vegas. Strohmeyer followed 7 year old Sherrice Iverson into a bathroom and began to physically assault her. Cash came upon the scene, made a half-hearted attempt to intervene, and then left the girl to her fate. Not only did he fail to stop the assault, he also chose not to report it.
On their way home that night, Strohmeyer told Cash he had raped and killed the little girl. Still, Cash kept quiet. Police finally caught up with Strohmeyer and he pleaded guilty to all charges. Cash is off the hook. Nevada has no law requiring people to report a crime. In an interview with the LA Times, Cash defended his non-involvement. Without a trace of remorse, he said, ""I’m not going to get upset over someone else’s life . . . I just worry about myself first. I don’t think of it. I’m not going to lose sleep over someone else’s problems. I didn’t know her.”
As Christians in today’s Post-Modern world, it is far too easy to get bogged down in the trials and temptations of modern culture. To us, "Loving God & Loving Each Other" is often just another bullet on our weekly agenda. For many, the relationship with God has become a relationship of convenience. Through Christ, we can all have an intimate, personal and deeply rewarding relationship with our Creator. The right relationship with God is far more rewarding than anything this world has to offer. As with any relationship, when we become complacent and develop unhealthy patterns, our relationship with God will suffer. True love is not just a feeling. It is a commitment. As humans, our feelings are constantly in flux, changing with the wind. As Christians, our commitments should remain strong, regardless of how we feel from day to day. It’s time we evaluate our lives. I want us to consider what it means to love God and love our neighbor because all moral responsibility hinges on these two affections. These are priorities we must never neglect.