Friday, March 21, 2008

Two groups of robbers. . .

Rev. Robert E. Price, Pastor for the New Mt. Zion Baptist Church here in Dallas has become a great new partner with us. His church supports our Destination Home initiative that provides permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless men and women.

Recently, Rev. Price offered a prayer on behalf of CDM and our efforts among our homeless neighbors. He referred to Jesus' familiar story of the Good Samaritan. He said that there was a man who fell among two groups of thieves.

The first group robbed him and beat him up.

The second group passed him by in his time of distress.

Only the Samaritan stopped to care.

What an insight!

There are all kinds of ways to rob people, aren't there?

I'm thinking the second group of robbers were the worst of all.

How about you?



DJT said...

I agree. The second group held themselves out to be something they were really not. Not much has changed in our day.

c hand said...

From whom do you demand charity? To whom do you owe gratitude?

Larry James said...

c hand, it is interesting to me that Jesus made it clear here that he was not really talking about "charity." He had been asked "who is my neighbor?" He failed to answer that question. Rather, he answered this question: "Who turned out to be the neighbor we all need and should strive to become?" Jesus was not into charity. He was into complete life transformation when it comes to the needs and the pains of others. With him it was always "way of life" perspective rather than rules and regulations. People who live as genuine neighbors never seem to have any problem with the matters of gratitude.

c hand said...

Yes, the "neighbor question" was answered by pointing us toward gratitude for one outside our own circle. But did Jesus teach resentment for the passers by? Are they now outside the neighborhood?

Larry James said...

c hand, it is my view the Jesus did not teach resentment toward anyone. However, in this story he does clearly point up the irrelevance and uselessness of a religion that would allow any justification for passing by a person in such a crisis of need. The Priest and Levite clearly left the injured man on the road to die and they did so with a religious justification. The point is clear: the worldview of the heretical Samaritan, as the passers by would have regarded him, was more in line with the Kingdom of God than that of those who felt themselves to be "insiders" and people of the promise.