Sunday, October 2, 2011

Are You a Good Samaritan?

If you really fulfill the royal law according 
to the Scripture, 
"You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” 
you are doing well. 
But if you show partiality, you are committing sin 
and are convicted by the law as transgressors."
James 2:8-9

James speaks of partiality in light of the rich and the poor, but there are so many ways in which we show partiality.  I read part of an article today that said that studies show that among conservative Christians, there are as few "good Samaritans" as there are in the general population.  Sadly, it was an atheist who wrote the article; what kind of example are we for one who hates Christ?  The article stated also that Christians are more likely to help their "own kind" than they are to help those very different from themselves.

When Jesus told the young man in Luke 10 that the greatest commandment was to "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,”  the young man asked Him, "Who is my neighbor?"

The Parable of the Good Samaritan
Image from Children's Corner at San Francisco Central Seventh-day Adventist Church
You know the story of the Good Samaritan.  We have heard it since we were children.  We have told it to our children, given them coloring pages, and taught the story many times in Sunday School.  But is it as easy to live the story as it is to tell it?

I must go to the jail to visit a woman whom I've known for a number of years.  It is not a pleasant situation, that she is in, and I am not comfortable doing this. I really do have some choices.  I can look at her with disdain and refuse to dirty my hands.  Or I can pretend that she doesn't exist at all, looking the other way.  Or I can have compassion on her; I can bind up her spiritual wounds and dress them with the oil and wine of the Holy Spirit.  She needs an impartial friend to give her a cup of cold water in the name of Jesus.

What should I do?  What would you do?
Not wanting to be labeled as a transgressor,



Thank you for this wonderful Sunday message.


definetely go.
your visit and wisdom will last far longer in her thoughts than the actual physical time your there.
like a visit in the hospital, i pondered on what people had said later when alone and quiet.

The Quintessential Magpie

I would go. After all, the Lord told us not to forget the prisoners. He went to the people who needed Him most. Go and take that cup of water. Be very gentle. She might not be in there if people had handled her gently. There but by the grace of God go you or I.

And while I know we make our own beds, and it sounds like she's made an uncomfortable one, you can still give her a blanket for the cold.

It's the right thing to do. Definitely go.



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