Our scripture this morning is ‭‭Luke‬ ‭10:25-37‬.

And a lawyer stood up and put Him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” And He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How does it read to you?” And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” And He said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this and you will live.” But wishing to justify himself, he said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus replied and said, “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. 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. But a Samaritan, who was on a journey, came upon him; and when he saw him, he felt compassion, 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. 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.’ Which of these three do you think proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell into the robbers’ hands?” And he said, “The one who showed mercy toward him.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do the same.”

This familiar passage is a lesson to us about group membership and relationships, which are not necessarily the same thing. We hear about a priest and a Levite, both of whom serve in the Temple, and the Samaritan from the wrong side of the tracks. Jesus uses this story to teach us that merely “belonging” is not enough, the important thing is our action.

Two church members see the man in trouble but do nothing to help him, while the “unchurched” guy does the right thing. Jesus is telling us that being part of the group is only part of our call. He reminds us “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).

At the end of the lesson He tells the lawyer “Go and do the same”. Before He ascends to Heaven He commands “Go and make disciples of all nations”. Being a follower of Christ requires our faith and our action. We can’t just stand by and watch.

Loving Lord, thank You for showing us the importance of caring for each other in faith. Help us to be active disciples, sharing the Good News with the world. Amen.

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