Our Bible story for this week is from Luke 10: 25-37 where one day, a lawyer asked Jesus what he had to do to have eternal life. When Jesus asked him what God’s Law said, the lawyer answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself.” Jesus answered, “You are right. Do this and you will live.” But the man wanted to make himself look good, so he asked Jesus another question. “Who is my neighbor?”
To answer this question, Jesus told about a man who was traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho when he was attacked by robbers. They beat him, took his money, stripped him of his clothes, and left him beside the road to die. A priest came by and when he saw the man, he crossed over to the other side of the road and continued on his way. A little while later, a Levite, who worked in the temple, came along. He also saw the man lying there and passed by on the other side of the road. Now, you would think that both religious men would stop and help this poor man, but they didn’t.
Finally, a man from Samaria came along, and when he saw the man, he stopped to help him. The Samarians and the Jews didn’t like each other very much; in fact, you could say they were enemies. But the Good Samaritan took pity upon the victim and put medicine on his wounds and wrapped them with bandages. Then he took the man to an inn and took care of him. The next day, he gave the innkeeper some money and told him to take care of the man. “Give him anything he needs. If it costs more than I have given you, I will pay you the next time I am here.”
Jesus asked the lawyer, “Which of these three men was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by the robbers.” The lawyer answered, “The one who helped him.” “You are right,” said Jesus, “now you go and do the same.”
So who are our neighbors today? All those who need a neighbor to help them. We can be that neighbor to those around us and around the world. Then they will be a witness to the love of God by our actions. Just as the good Samaritan in the story helped the one in need, Jesus says to you and me, “Go and do the same.”
Let’s pray our prayer. Father God, help us to always have compassion for those in need and help them the best we can. Then we can be just like the Good Samaritan and show Your love to all those around us no matter what their circumstances. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
Ann Moody is pastor of Wilkesville First Presbyterian Church and the Middleport First Presbyterian Church.