The Character of Compassion
Luke 10:25-37 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
25 And a [a]lawyer stood up and put Him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 And He said to him, “What is written in the Law? [b]How does it read to you?” 27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And He said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this and you will live.” 29
But wishing to justify himself, he said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
30 Jesus replied and said, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to
Current Political Climate: Israel was technically under Roman Rule. They had a culture of their own and were permitted to practice as long as they didn’t upset the status quo. You also have some geography going on here. The Jericho of New Testament times was about 18 miles away from Jerusalem, but the road to it dropped about 3300 feet. For comparison, that’s about 2/3 of the depth of the grand canyon. And along the route were caves, rocks – all sorts of places to hide. Looked a lot like the road to Jabba’s palace at the beginning of Return of the Jedi.
Why travel it at all? Priests and Levites had to go between cities for religious reasons – particularly duties at the temple.
The Character of t
Religious duties – having to stay separate from cultu
Leviticus 2:1-2 ‘No one shall defile himself for a dead person among his people, 2 except for his relatives who are nearest to him,
Represents all things organized – he’s neat, tidy, knows his expectations, but sometimes unexpected things come along.
Should have been the most qualified – rituals, life & death
The Character of the Levite
So now the job of helping our wounded man falls to a Levite.
Still a Jewish person – particularly one who can trace his bloodline to the tribe of Levi from the original 12 tribes that comprised Israel. They still had roles in the temple – life and worship.
Perhaps the lay ministry within the church
The Character of the Samaritan
Not expected – long-standing animosity between them.
So what does compassion look like?
It transcends status
Based on the needs of others
Christ’s character – embodies all this
5 And it *[c]happened that He was reclining at the table in his house, and many tax collectors and [d]sinners [e]were dining with Jesus and His disciples; for there were many of them, and they were following Him.16 When the scribes of the Pharisees saw that He was eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they said to His disciples, “Why is He eating and drinking with tax collectors and [f]sinners?” 17 And hearing this, Jesus *said to them, “It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick; I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
2 Therefore you have no excuse, [a]everyone of you who passes judgment, for in that which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. 2 And we know that the judgment of God [b]rightly falls upon those who practice such things.3 But do you suppose this, O man, [c]when you pass judgment on those who practice such things and do the same yourself, that you will escape the judgment of Godc? 4 Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?
Matthew E. Morgan, MA, LPCC
Today’s show is hosted by Matthew Morgan, a licensed professional clinical counselor in Ohio. Matthew’s favorite roles are as a husband and father. He also is known for loving his coffee. See more about Matthew here
Behind the Podcast Thoughts:
Hey, nothing broke this week!