The Great Samaritan | Sean Patterson
The entire Bible is a story about hospitality as it begins with God making a home for humanity in a garden and it ends with God making a home for believers to dwell with Him in a city.
His ministry was all about the rescuing love and welcome of God on display.
“Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.” – 1 Peter 4:8-9
“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels while unaware of it.” – Hebrews 13:2
If your walk with God does not produce humility in you, it will certainly produce defensiveness and self- justification.
If you look throughout scripture, you see God emphasizing the importance of love and care for others. He does this through creation and association.
“Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbor is the holiest object presented to your senses.” - C.S. Lewis
"You see, the founding fathers were really influenced by the Bible. The whole concept of the imago dei, as it is expressed in Latin, the 'image of God,' is the idea that all men have something in them that God injected… we must never forget this as a nation: there are no degradations in the image of God. Every man from a treble white to a bass black is significant on God’s keyboard, precisely because every man is made in the image of God." - Martin Luther King Jr.
“18 He executes justice for the orphan and the widow, and shows His love for the foreigner by giving him food and clothing” – Deuteronomy 10:18
“The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked.” – Psalms 146:9
30 “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among robbers, and they stripped him and beat him, and went away leaving him half dead. 31 And by chance a priest was going down on that road, and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. Likewise a Levite also, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, who was on a journey, came upon him; and when he saw him, he felt compassion, 34 and came to him and bandaged up his wounds, pouring oil and wine on them; and he put him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 On the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper and said, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I return I will repay you.’” - Luke 10:30-35
Jesus is answering this man’s question of “Who is my neighbor” by depicting a man meeting material, physical, and economic needs through deeds.
“We shall never love our neighbors with sincerity, according to our Lord’s intention, until we have corrected the love of ourselves. The two affections are opposite and contradictory.” - John Calvin
Far too often I think safety, and then obedience to God.
“The safest place to be is at the center of God’s will.” - Jim Elliot
To the degree that the gospel shapes your self-image, you will identify with those in need.
“If we are never obliged to relieve other’s burdens but only when we can do it without burdening ourselves, then how do we bear our neighbor’s burdens, when we bear no burden at all?” - Jonathan Edwards
My neighbor is hurting.
My neighbor needs help.
My neighbors are those who cannot help themselves.
My neighbor is someone who appears on my path.
My neighbor is someone who is unable to ask for help.
My neighbor is of a different race.
My neighbor is a stranger.
My neighbor is someone I’m afraid to help.
My neighbor is some who is dangerous to help.
My neighbor looks horrible.
My neighbor is of a different religion.
My neighbor is a victim of injustice.
My neighbor can’t say thank you.
My neighbor is someone nobody wants to help.
My neighbor will cost me time.
My neighbor will cost me money.
My neighbor can’t repay me.
Jesus was trying to make the point: Your neighbor is anyone in need.
What if your only hope was to get ministry from someone who not only didn’t owe you any help, but who actually owed you the opposite? What if your only hope was to get free grace from someone who had every justification based on your relationship to him, to trample you?
Jesus is the Great Samaritan to whom the Good Samaritan points.