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Who Is My Neighbor?

Pastor Eric Gonyon

The Good Samaritan

And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? 26 He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? 27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. 28 And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. 29 But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour? Luke 10:25-29 KJV

• Who is my neighbor? This man was trying to justify himself. He was proud, self-righteous, and religious. Jesus goes straight to the heart.

And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. Luke 10:30 KJV

• The road from Jerusalem to Jericho was about eighteen miles, consisting of desert terrain and rocky places. It had a bad reputation because many robberies and murders were committed there. It was known as the “bloody way.” Jericho was located in the valley and about twelve thousand priests and Levites lived there.

And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. Luke 10:31 KJV

• Why did the priest not help him?
• People looked to the priest to know the will of God. Was that the will of God?
• Was he afraid that he would be attacked also if he helped the man?
• Was he just too busy to help him?
• Did he not have love or compassion for others?
• Was he religious and only thought of himself?

And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side. Luke 10:32 KJV

• Levites were assistants to the priests. Maybe he was just imitating what he saw other priests do, absolutely nothing and ignore the situation.
• Maybe he was thanking God that he was not the one on the roadside who was left half dead.
• What if it was not a part of his tradition and he was not willing to change?

But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, 34 And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee. Luke 10:33-35 KJV

• The Jews had much bigotry and prejudices against the Samaritans. They thought that they were better than them and, in many cases, would not even talk to them
• All of us have suffered, at some time in our lives, from different forms of prejudices (e.g. treated differently because of our race, gender, financial status, education, political opinions, etc.) and all of us MUST choose to walk in love and forgive.

Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? 37 And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise. Luke 10:36-37 KJV

• The religious Jewish lawyer would not even say the word, “Samaritan.” Instead, he said, “The one who showed mercy on him.”
• Jesus quickly put the lawyer in his place when He told him this parable.
• The Samaritan was full of compassion and the love of God.
• Ask yourself, “Who is my neighbor?”
• Let us renounce all prejudice, bigotry, pride, resentment, insensitivity, hate, and judgment toward others. Let us, with the love of God, see all people as our neighbor.
• I am convinced that if we truly love others as God loves us, it would resolve most of the problems that we deal with.

The Greatest Commandment - Love

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:34-35 NIV
• Love is a little word. People make it big.
• Love is more easily demonstrated than defined.
• Those who, we may feel, deserve love the least, need it the most.
• You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.
• Love is not love until it’s shared. Share Jesus. Who is my neighbor?

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. John 3:16-17 KJV

• God loved us so much that He gave His only Son to die so that we may live eternally. This is called the gift of God and it’s your job to give this gift to others.
• Because you love God, you want others to know Him. Be a good neighbor!

And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. 17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. Mark 16:15-18 KJV

• The Great Commission is not the great suggestion; it is the great commandment.
• Each one reach one. Each one teach one. Make disciples. Multiply. Win the lost at any cost.