Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Am I Like: The Priest, The Levite or The Samaritan?

The Sunday before I went to Texas, I stayed home instead of going to church.. I was flipping back and forth between two Christian channels, and on one heard a Pastor mention the Good Samaritan... I don't really know what else he said, because I started thinking about the story, and proceeded to look it up. (Luke 10:25-37)

Anyway - I have been praying and asking the Lord to show me some things, and as I read this and looked some things up on the internet, I just saw the story in a different light... I am sure that other people have seen it this way too, but the ligth bulb went off for me, for the first time regarding this story..

If you have not read the story it is this:

Luke 10:25-37
The Parable of the Good Samaritan
25On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
26"What is written in the Law?" he replied. "How do you read it?"

27He answered: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'[a]; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'[b]"

28"You have answered correctly," Jesus replied. "Do this and you will live."

29But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"

30In reply Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. 35The next day he took out two silver coins[c] and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.'

36"Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?"

37The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him."
Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."

What caught my attention was that TWO men of God: a priest, and a Levite passed him by..

Notes:(Levites are the descendants of Levi, one of the Tribes Of Israel, the Children Of Jacob (Genesis 29:34). The term is generally used, from the perspective of The Bible, to identify the part of the tribe that was set apart for the secondary duties of the sanctuary service (1 Kings 8:4, Ezra 2:70), as assistants to the priests, who were also Levites. Although all priests were Levites, not all Levites were priests.)

I know not all Levites were priests but I believe that both men in the story ( a parable, that Jesus made up) were men of God, otherwise why wouldn't HE say another tribe or person? I think He is making a point here..

The priest, a man of God, passed him by.
The Levite, a man of God, set apart for the secondary duties of the sanctuary service, as assistants to the priests, passed him by...

A little history from my bible in 2 Kings: The king of Assyria imported foreign captives to inhabit the "towns of Samaria" in order to destory any remaining nationalism. Intermarriage between Israelites not taken to Assyria and foreginers brought to the land of Israel produced people called the "Samaritans." The result was mixture of foreign religious and cultural traditions with Hebrew customs and faith. (They were pagans..)

I think it is interesting that the Lord uses someone that is a pagan, not a religious person in the church to help this person, who is in desperate need... The Samaritan goes to him and helps him in his need.. It does not say he preached to him, or anything like that, he just had compassion and helped his immediate need, and told the person that he took him to, that he would cover any other needs that may come up..

(I read these notes from my Bible today:)
This parable emphasizes that inherent in true saving faith and obedience is compassion for those in need. The call to love God is a call to love others. The new life and grace that Christ gives to those who accept Him will produce love, mercy and compassion for thise who are distressed and afflicted. It is the responsibility of all believers to act on the Holy Spirit's love within them and not to harden their hearts by being insensitive to the suffering and needs of others. Our neighbors are those who we need us when it is in our power to help them..

I think sometimes, I want to try and fix whatever is wrong.. I am thinking: "Hey, the answer is Jesus", but sometimes, I think He just wants me to keep my mouth shut and LOVE THEM, and help HEAL THEIR WOUNDS, and help with IMMEDIATE NEEDS... Be a listening ear and shoulder to cry on and keep my "Religion to myself".... Be... Not do and fix... That is His job, not mine...

I swear, I sound spiritually bi polar on my blog... But, I am learning, what can I say... I don't have all the anwers, but I know one of the main answers is to love them like Jesus...

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