Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Samaritans



There was a man going down from Jerusalem to Jericho who fell prey to robbers. They stripped him, beat him, and then went off leaving him half-dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road; but he saw him and continued on. Likewise there was a Levite who came the same way; he saw him and went on. But a Samaritan who was journeying along came on him and was moved to pity at the sight. He approached him and dressed his wounds, pouring in oil and wine. He then hoisted him on his own beast and brought him to an inn, where he cared for him. The next day he took out two silver pieces and gave them to the innkeeper with the request: "Look after him, and if there is any further expense, I will repay you on my way back."

"Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the man who fell in with the robbers?" The answer came, "The one who treated him with compassion." Jesus said to him, "Then go and do the same."

Luke 10: 30-37


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The story is familiar enough. You needn't be especially devout to recognize it. The expression has passed into common usage: a good Samaritan: someone who helps others in need. To us, all Samaritans are good. We like to identify with the Samaritan or, at least, think of him as one of "us."

If we do, we have missed an important point of the parable.

To Jesus's audience, all Samaritans were, by definition, bad. Samaritans were not us, but them. Think for a minute. Whom do you despise? A race, a class, an individual? Your answer matters only in that it must be someone you can't stand. Make your choice.

That person is the Samaritan.

Choose two people you truly admire. People who represent, for you, the best among us.

They are the priest and the Levite.

Choose someone you love. Let that person be the man who fell in among the robbers.

Now read the parable again.


Respectfully Yours,


Cricket




9 comments:

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Excellent, Cricket!!! You truly bring the parable home!!! Hugs, Janine

Michelle H. said...

I like this parable. A fine example of the good in people. Thanks for posting it!

Jim said...

You make me think, which isn't always a good thing. In this case, though, yes. The best of us are sinners, and the worst of us are capable of great good. And, of course, judge not...

Thumbelina said...

You got it Cricket!
Context is everything. It is where the learning starts.

That Samaritan was not a bad man. He was just from a despised race. Yet those who SHOULD have helped... walked by!
A colour, creed, race or religious affiliation does not make a person good or bad. It is how they treat each other.

The Samaritan man didn't just go over to him, he treated his wounds, took him to a hotel and paid for his room with two silver pieces - a massive amount of money - offering to pay more if needed! The extra mile doesn't even come close...
Jesus said we need to do the same. :0)

addhumorandfaith said...

What a wonderful, thought-provoking post!

Tammie Lee said...

Hi Cricket,
Thank you for the inspiring post. When people look out for one another, the world is a changed place. Also thank you for your lovely comment on my blog.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Hi Cricket, Wouldn't it be great if there waere more kind peopl einthe wrold?

Thanks for stopping by my blog via Hilary's POTW. I really apprecaite it.

Hope your week is going well.
jj

Cricket said...

To The Chinese People - I'm flattered, truly flattered, but I must remind you that I'm a happily married man. It would be quite improper for me to accept. Sorry.

lime said...

ah! well done! just last week i had a discussion on this parable and made the very same points. back in my college days i was part of a comedy/drama group and one of the skits we did was a reinterpretation of the parable calling it "good soviet." (yeah, it was waning days of the cold war)

PS your retort to the spammer is hilarious.