The parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37 teaches us several different things – who is your neighbor, love your neighbor and don’t make assumptions about other people. Jesus used an example His followers would recognize to help them better understand.
The ones who passed by were authority figures, people with access to resources that might have been useful. However, they didn’t stop, for whatever reason. Were they too busy? Were they frightened? We don’t know from the parable, and while Jesus doesn’t call them out directly, the accusations are definitely implied. Jesus teaches us there is no valid reason not to help.
We are also taught about not assuming things about “others”, those with whom we don’t associate, people who may live differently. Jesus tells us often the unexpected can occur because even though we are different, these are the neighbors God tells us to love.
We show our love for God by loving our neighbors. We can’t do or give anything directly to God, but we can care for His beloved children as He commanded. Our treatment of each other is important to God, and we must learn to care for each other to be like Jesus.
Loving Lord, we are grateful for Your mercy and care for us. Help us show the same mercy and care to our neighbors, and love You by loving the world. Amen.
Compassion does not flow from a role or position. Nor can it be effectively institutionalized. It flows from the heart and always starts with the individual.