What or Whom Do You See

Text: Luke [10:25]-37

What or Whom Do You See

This is one of the best known stories that Jesus told; the
story of the Good Samaritan. It is definitely one of my favorite stories
because it helps us be reminded that Jesus does not see things from the same
viewpoint that you and I do. It also reminds me of Mister Rogers telling of how
his mother would remind him that in difficult times we are to look for those
who are doing good – the Good Samaritans.

It is also a personally challenging story. We can assume
that Jesus didn’t just tell this to make the Priests and Levites angry; he
would have told the story to point to some flaws in the behavior of the people
he was addressing and to the Jews as a whole.

The man is half-dead. Probably presumed dead and based on Jesus’ telling I think we can assume that seeing a man lying in this condition wasn’t to abnormal. The challenge for me is not that the Priest and Levite kept going but that they realized the situation so well that they crossed over to the other side of the road. They chose not to identify themselves with the possibilities of the injured man. Had they done so they would likely have been kept from fulfilling their important religious tasks. And yet Jesus makes it abundantly clear in the rest of the story that the important religious task was the man lying in the ditch. How often do I ‘cross over’ to keep from seeing the ugliness in front of me?

We are surrounded by people made in God’s image. Will we cross the road for them and delay the pressing needs of our own desires?

Daniel Harding