February 07, 2022

The Best of the Portals of Prayer

Read: Mark 12:28-34 / Psalm 82

“Which of these three do you think, proved to be a neighbor…” He said,
‘the one who showed mercy.”
Luke 10:36-37

Who is My Neighbor?

A Bible scholar was testing Jesus. This man had been brought up in a culture that set boundaries for neighbors. He wanted to hear what parameters, or limits, Jesus would set for those He should care about. The surprise of the story is that the hero was a Samaritan. Israelites and Samaritans shared a great hatred for one another. The Law expert had been taught that “neighbors” – those we should love – were limited to his own kind. What are the parameters of our neighborliness? A loving parent will lose sleep and expend unlimited money for their child. Would that same parent assist an orphan? Our society continues with its ghettos fenced in by nationality and race and language. Jesus proposed to the Lawyer the new attitude that we love everyone, even our enemies. That attitude was modeled by Jesus, who dies for the sins of us all. He thereby opened the gates of heaven to everyone who believes in Him – not just one particular group. He demonstrated that “greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends” [John 15:13].

February 07, 1993

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