29 But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 36 So which of these three do you think was neighbor to him who fell among the thieves?” 37 And he said, “He who showed mercy on him.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.” Luke 10:29, 36-37
The parable of the Good Samaritan is a well known and much commented on teaching of Jesus. We can use it to learn just who we are supposed to treat as our neighbors.
A certain lawyer asked Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life, and Jesus responded with the question, “What is written in the law?” The lawyer answered by quoting Leviticus 19:18, which commands us to love God, and ends with the words, “and your neighbor as yourself.” Which brings us to verse 29, where the lawyer asks, “who is my neighbor?”
Jesus then tells us of a certain man, who was traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho, that was robbed and beaten by thieves. He was lying half dead by the side of the road, when a priest passed by and did nothing to help. Later a Levite also passed by, without helping the man lying there. Finally a Samaritan, traveling by, saw him, and helped him.
Then Jesus asks the question. “Which of these three do you think was neighbor to him?” The lawyer answered that the one who showed mercy was the one who was a neighbor. Here we get to the meat of the story, Jesus tells us, who our neighbors are. He said “Go and do likewise.”
If Jesus tells us to do something, we can choose to follow His instructions, or not. You see, being a neighbor is a decision. The priest and the Levite chose not to help the man, thus they chose not to love their neighbor as themselves. Then a Samaritan, whom most people reviled because of their heritage, showed the true meaning of godly love and compassion.
As Christians, everyone we interact with should be considered our neighbors. As preppers, we must keep this in mind while making our plans. During the Black Plague in Europe, Christians overwhelmingly stayed and served, while most others fled the disease. God’s Kingdom was greatly increased by the witness of these Christians of a bygone era, loving their neighbors, as themselves.
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Today in Christian History
1622 – Gregory XV published the bull ‘Inscrutabili Divinae,’ which reminded the Church of its mission to the newly discovered native populations in the recently discovered Americas.
1799 – Birth of Alexis F. Lvov, Russian church musician who composed the tune to the hymn, ‘God, the Almighty One! Wisely Ordaining.’
1882 – Blind Scottish Presbyterian clergyman George Matheson penned the words to the hymn, ‘O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go.’
1907 – Dropsie College for Hebrew and Cognate Learning, a graduate school for biblical and rabbinical studies, was chartered in Philadelphia.
1977 – Joseph Lason was installed as Bishop of Biloxi, Mississippi, becoming the first African- American Roman Catholic bishop consecrated since the 19th century.
Source for Today in Christian History: www.studylight.org