So a priest, a Levite and a Samaritan are walking down the Jericho road…but there’s no rim-shot that follows this line up. In a lesson about eternal life, loving God and loving one’s neighbor, Jesus tells a story that is still reverberating up to this day, and Jesus’ main point is that loving our neighbor is no joke!
Loving our neighbor forces us to cross ethnic and racial lines. Loving our neighbor forces us to cross economic and social status lines. Loving our neighbor forces us to cross unconventional and personally uncomfortable lines.
Hands get dirty when love enters the picture. Resources get used when love enters the picture. Lives change when love enters the picture. And this is only for those who are willing to show it. Even the self-justification seeking, or maybe we could say excuse giving, lawyer of Moses’ Law had to admit this!
So the next time we have the opportunity to laugh at the misfortune of those with whom we don’t “gee and haw” we may need to stop and reconsider who the joke may end up being on if we fail to have a heart that sees the seriousness of loving our neighbor.
“If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?” (1 John 4:20)