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 neighbor 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 neighbor?” 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 traveled, 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 neighbor 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.” - Luke 10:25-37
In today’s video, Marc tells about a moment when Jesus takes a lawyer's question and flips it on its head. At the conclusion of telling this story, he asked the lawyer, “Who proved neighbor?” In other words, Jesus did not allow the lawyer—nor does he allow us—to draw lines that define insiders and outsiders.
We are to be merciful to everyone. We are to love our neighbor, even those who are outside of our spheres of influence. And the lawyer responded with, “The one who showed mercy,” to which Jesus concluded by saying, “Go and do likewise.”
Question: Who is someone outside of your circle who could be touched by God's mercy today? Who is the one person who needs the most mercy from you? What is the best way you can show mercy-filled love to them in today's tense climate?
Family Chat: What does a good friend look like? Which comes first: having a good friend or being a good friend? How can you be a good friend?
Take Action: Go and be the neighbor.