Reflections from the Pew 147

We have been looking at the top ten Parables. These stories are are so well known that we sometimes forget their simple message. The top three are very close – at number 2 is The Good Samaritan – can you guess what number one will be?

It is found in Luke 10:25-37 – it is only found in Luke’s gospel.

The Parable of the Good Samaritan

On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

“What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

He answered, “‘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, ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’”

“You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”

But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbour?”

In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he travelled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. 

Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’

“Which of these three do you think was a neighbour to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”

The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”

Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”

The above image is taken from the blog An Atheist’s Favourite Parable: The Good Samaritan – Noni Doll

Here she retells the story in a modern context:

A man is walking through a dangerous part of the city at night, when he’s set upon by a gang of muggers…
… a preacher comes down the road…
Then comes a politician…
Then a rich man comes through in his limousine…
Finally, a Muslim woman sees the injured man…

The name Samaritan does not mean a good person, then the Jews and Samaritans hated each other. Maybe we need to change the parable name to be The Good (insert the name of a group of people we hate)”.