Whom should I Help?

“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. And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, 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. 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 10:30-35, KJV)

We are all familiar with the parable of the good Samaritan. Generally, when we consider the parable it is done from the perspective of the ones who did/or did not help the man in trouble. However, for just a moment, think about the man who was robbed.

People are often very good at ascribing blame and dissecting cause as a means of determining whether or not to help others. If one were analyzing the man in Jesus’ story he could easily be torn down. He could be reprimanded because he traveled a dangerous road alone. He could be looked upon as weak because he “allowed” himself to be overtaken by thieves. He could be considered by some to be unreliable because he lost everything he was carrying of value.

Nevertheless, in Jesus’ account none of those things matter. What matters is that the man needs help. The reasons why, or decisions leading up to that need are not what is important. The importance is seen in how others responded when that need was manifested.

It is easy for us to begin to analyze people when they are in need to try to find out who is to blame for such happening. In truth, it doesn’t really matter. When there is a need and we are able to help, what should we do? Jesus answered that question with this phrase: “Go, and do thou likewise” (Luke 10:37).

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