What is Love? And who is my neighbor?

A question was posed to Jesus, “What can I do to inherit eternal life?”

Jesus asked in return, “What do the scriptures say to you?”

The young lawyer answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart… and love your neighbor as yourself.”

Jesus affirmed him and told him to go and do that.

But wishing to justify himself, the young man pressed further, “But who is my neighbor?”

Jesus told a story of a man beaten, robbed and left half dead by the side of the road.

Two Jewish leaders pass him by and ignore the helpless man.   A Samaritan (who the Jews were hostile toward) stopped and helped him.  But he didn’t do just that…

  • He got down on his level, face to face which said to the man, “I see your wounds.”
  • His helplessness was seen and acknowledged.
  • Sacrifice was exhibited. By taking time out of his schedule and putting the man on his own ride.
  • From his own provisions, he sterilized the wounds, poured oil and bandaged him.
  • He took risk by stopping on a dangerous part of the road.
  • He transported him and placed the man under the care of an Inn Keeper and paid money for the man’s services.
  • He promised to check in in the near future and pay for any additional costs that had been incurred.

The story Jesus told had a purpose, it was to define two questions: “What is love and who is my neighbor?”

He told the story to the people of Israel for them to emulate.   Yet does loving your neighbor only involve people with obvious wounds lying by the road side?

No.

The robbed man had obvious wounds, those are easy to see, but they are few and far between.

Most of us have non obvious wounds, which are harder to see and they are everywhere.

Thanks for listening,

Love,

Milan & Kay