The Good Samaritan: What’s the Point?
Updated: Dec 9, 2019
In Jesus’ story of the Good Samaritan, it seems to me that the chief point is not simply encapsulated in the question: Who is my neighbour? But rather in the question: What kind of neighbour are you? I wonder what would happen if each one of us made the decision to actively be a good neighbour? What if we got up each morning and ask to whom can I be a good neighbour today? Then as we journeyed through the day actively took those opportunities presented to us to be a good neighbour to those who needed our help that day. Certainly, we would have to be careful and sensitive that we did not foster ourselves on people in inappropriate ways.
Yet it might be quite exciting to experience the opportunities that God brought our way. It also might be quite confronting to begin to recognise the opportunities that were all around us that we had failed to see for so many years. It would open our eyes to the world around us and cause us to see the world and the people we encountered on a daily basis in a new and different way. Maybe such an experiment would change the course and direction of our lives and change the person we are in a substantial way. In a real sense, Jesus is less concerned with whom my neighbour might be than he is with the desire for each of us to treat everyone we encounter as our neighbour in a loving and caring fashion. He desires us to be actively good neighbours in our community, our workplace, during our leisure time, and all the places we spend our time. So let us go out today and endeavour to be a good neighbour to everyone we meet and let us do it in the most creative way possible so that strangers may become our friends and the world we encounter renewed and hallowed.