Monday, January 30, 2012

Luke 10:29-37 - The Good Samaritan

Scripture Luke 10:29-37

[29] But he (a lawyer), desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"

[30] Jesus replied, "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him, and departed, leaving him half dead.

[31] Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him he passed by on the other side.

[32] So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.

[33] But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was; and when he saw him, he had compassion,

[34] and went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; then he set him on his own beast and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.

[35] And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, `Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.' [36] Which of these three, do you think, proved neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?"

[37] He said, "The one who showed mercy on him." And Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise."

Verse 29
Just like a lawyer, he wants all the terms accurately defined so that he will be sure of eternal life. It could be that the question stems from debates about who belongs to Gods people and therefore is an object of neighbourly love.

Verse 31 and 32
It could be that the priest and the Levite were afraid to approach the man because they thought they would be defiled if they touched him.

Verse 33
His love was spontaneous.

Verse 37
The lawyer can’t bring himself to say Samaritan.

Source: St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, Picayune, MS

The parable of the Good Samaritan provides us with a beautiful image of how to love others. This love goes beyond feelings and cultural and religious boundaries to reach out to whoever needs care along the way. Recently, the ABC's 'Australian Story' featured a man who suffered from severe depression after witnessing atrocities during war time. He unleashed his pain and anguish on his family and came to believe that his life was no longer worth living. It was in realising that there are people worse off than him that he decided to give his time to supplying groceries to farmers affected by drought. This turned his life around.

The Samaritan story invites us to care for whoever needs our support, no matter who they may be. But underneath this is another story, that to care like this for others is to experience the grace of God in our lives, to know the blessing of being able to give without return, to be able to empathise, to be privileged to serve.

Source: Daily Prayer Online

The prayer of a servant:

My Lord God, I confess that I am the priest and the Levite. Not only did I walk past, I walked away. I was too busy, too frightened, my heart was too cold. In my own abundance, I was too poor in spirit to bear the cost. In my own comfort, I was too complacent to suffer any inconvenience. It was the Samaritan, a man despised and without pride of position or parentage, who was faithful and loving and who gave of himself sacrificially.

Father God, in your mercy, say that it is not too late for me. Another may have borne the burden, but I can go to the inn and sit with the traveler while he heals. I can bathe his wounds and feed him and lighten his spirit until the Good One returns.

Grant me the grace to do that little service with a grateful heart; please stand with me so that I will not walk away and shun the greater service the next time.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, the sinner. Amen.


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