The Good Neighbour

Luke 10:33, “But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion.”

Common biblical interpretation of this parable says we are the Samaritan and others are the half-dead man, which is somewhat true since Jesus says to do likewise (v. 37). But that is precisely the point: Jesus does not identify us as the Samaritan; He says to be like the Samaritan. We are not the Good Samaritan, for when we see such poor souls we think, “Thank God that isn’t me.” Jesus is the Good Samaritan—a social outcast rejected by all; we are the half-dead man. Dead in our sin, Jesus was not appalled; rather, He had compassion on us, came down from His throne, and paid the full price for the wages of our sin (death, Romans 6:23) by means of His blood. Jesus is the Good Neighbour. He had compassion on us in our dilapidated state. “Therefore,” He says, “you go, and do likewise. Be like Me; show My compassion to the world.”

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