How would you answer the question, “Who is your neighbor?”


When Jesus was on earth people tried to argue with him all the time. They were constantly trying to make him say something wrong and prove that he wasn’t as smart as he seemed. One time a “lawyer” (a man who knew the laws of God very well) came to Jesus and challenged him with this conversation:

Luke 10:25-29. 25And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I DO to inherit eternal life?” 26He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27And 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.” 28And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.”29But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 

Who is my neighbor? That was the lawyer’s question. To answer that question Jesus told the “Good Samaritan” story. Jesus said, “Once upon a time there was a Jewish man that was beaten and robbed. A Jewish priest and a Jewish Levite both refused to stop and help the injured and penniless man. But then a Samaritan man came along and stopped to help the Jewish man. He bandaged his wounds, put him in a hotel, bought him food and medicine, and took care of him until he was well.”

Then Jesus asked, “Which of these people was a good neighbor?” Of course the answer is the Samaritan. But “be a good Samaritan” is not Jesus’ main point. Remember, the Jewish lawyer came to Jesus asking what to DO to get to heaven. But the Jewish man who got beaten up was unable to DO anything without help. You see, Jesus’ point was that we all need a Good Samaritan to rescue us because none of us can DO enough good things to go to heaven. None of us will ever love God enough. None of us will ever love our neighbor enough. That’s why each of us has to admit that we will never be good enough and then simply receive the love of Jesus, the Great Samaritan who loves us and takes care of us no matter what.

Because of Jesus we will always be loved and taken care of.

With Jesus we can love and take care of others too.


Because we have been helped by Jesus, we can help others too. Plan a way that you can help someone in need today or this week.


Jesus, you saved me when I could never save myself. You are my Good Samaritan. Thank you! Amen.

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