The title says it all- A Christian is not who he says he is, but whether he lives as one or not.
A neighbor sees a need and extends his help.
1John 3:17 states,
“But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?”
“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great command-ment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” (Mt22:37-39)
Jesus was asked “And who is my neighbour?” (Lk10:29) In answering the question Jesus told the story of the Good Samaritan who came to aid of a traveler who was robbed, stripped of his clothing, wounded and left half dead.
Sadly, it seems that many who say they “love God and go to church“, don’t know who their neighbor is. Here is a recent incident that my husband, Drgold experienced that illustrates this truth.
We live in a high-rise condo where off-street parking is very limited. In preparation for repaving our parking lot and driveway, our condo association needed to find a lot not used much doing the weekdays. We need temporary parking only for a few days for about 25 cars. Any place that could accommodate any number of cars in different lots would be okay, too.
As it so happens, there are 3 churches within our block where we live. The first church he inquired right around the corner from us told him “No”, even though their lot was not being used during the week. He thought they were sort of like ‘passing the buck’ by suggesting that my husband check with another nearby church. Here we are their neighbors and had a pressing need for only 4 days, but that church did not see it that way.
Jesus said if you love God, you must also love your neighbors as yourself. This is a lesson for all of us to examine ourselves– who are our neighbors and does the love of God really dwell our hearts toward those who are in need or are less fortunate.
This is the story of the Good Samaritan from Luke 10:30-37:
“Who Is My Neighbor?”
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.
31 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.
32 And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.
33 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,
34 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.
35 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.
36 Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?
37 And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.
Do you really love God? Do you know who your neighbor is? Are you a good Samaritan or like the priest and Levite in the Luke 10 account? Are you a believer or make-believer?