The Parable of the Good Samaritan


 
A Jewish man was going on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho. On his way, he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. The poor man was lying right on the road bleeding. A priest happened to be going down the same road. When he saw the man, he thought, "It would be good to help this poor fellow. But should I spend my valuable time on him? Besides, 20 people are waiting for me in Jericho and I need to tell them about God. And this poor thing can not listen to me anyway. He is too sick. O God, help him Yourself!" And the priest left. A Levite, a priest's assistant, was going down the same road. Seeing the wounded man, he stopped and said, "Hey, fellow, are you OK?" But a painful moan was the only reply to his question. "He might have fallen into the hands of robbers," the Levite thought. "What does the Bible tell us concerning this? Never forsake the needy, but help them. It means that I should help him. But on the other hand what can I do here? I am not a doctor. I teach people God's law, but I don't cure them. Let someone else help him." And he left.
The poor man would have died if it were not for a Samaritan who was travelling on that road. We should say that the Jews did not like the Samaritans. They would never talk to the Samaritans, they did not even let the Samaritans into their temple to worship God. But when this Samaritan saw the wounded Jewish man, he did not want to remember the attitude of Jews towards Samaritans. He got off his donkey; he put bandages on the man's wounds. And then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. And when the man was settled, the Samaritan gave some money to the innkeeper and said, "I must hurry. Here, take this money and look after this man." "OK", the innkeeper replied. "If it were not for you, Samaritan, this man would have died."
What do you think, who of those three characters was a neighbour to the man who was in need?
Of course, that one who helped him, the Samaritan. For only a true neighbour can help you when you are in trouble.
That is exactly what Jesus teaches us to do, to love and help all people, treating every one of them as our neighbour.