Reflecting on “The Good Samaritan”

By Liam Massey |Fourth Year student

Our Messiah was a wing of refuge for the poor in spirit, and an overturner of tables to the vainly religious. He was as tender as the dove, and yet as tough as the serpent. This kind of humanly impossible antithesis that was the life and is the essence of Jesus, can only come from a heart posture of neighborly compassion, or altruism; which can, in others words be defined as love.

In his sermon “On Being a Good Neighbor”, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. brings up a Sunday school classic passage of Scripture out of Luke chapter 10, “The Parable of the Good Samaritan”.

The lawyer in the story, who tries to test Jesus by asking Him how to inherit eternal life, then asks of our Savior a very fallible question in verse 29, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus then lays out His infamous parable, which is a call to walk in the eternal love of the Trinity. It’s a call to walk in what constituted the Samaritan in the story’s goodness, which according to Dr. King was his universal, dangerous, and excessive altruism, or love.

We, the church, need to stop trying to forcibly submerge one another in doctrinal beliefs, shatter our learnt cultural divides, and start universally viewing each other as image bearers of Christ; a unified body, free of ethnic or sectarian labels. Only then, will we be able to live out Dr. King’s dream of a truly integrated society, and Jesus’ prayers that we might be “perfectly one”.

See, the tent of the presence of the Lord is far outside the camp of social normality, and it will only be pitched where we reflect, in spirit and in truth, as well as in love, because God is all three, the neighborly, peaceable, fierce, and compassionate love of our Good Samaritan, our Shepherd, Our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Center for Faithful Business

Seattle Pacific University

Dr. JoAnn Flett, Executive Director


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