“I wouldn’t touch that with a 10-foot pole!”
“Get that away from me!”
“Keep your distance!”
From an early age, we start learning what’s dangerous, what will get us in trouble — and what we need to avoid. Most of the time, these cautionary remarks and exclamations are good advice; there’s usually a good reason. Sometimes, however, we get so good at absorbing these warnings and rules and scoldings into our everyday lives that we hardly ever question whether there is actual danger or just habit.
In the story Jesus told about a man stopping to help a stranger on the road, a story we call “The Good Samaritan,” the audience would have grown up hearing all the warnings about the dangers on the road to Jericho. Real dangers. A place to be avoided. And they knew the added “dangers” for a priest and a Levite in the situation Jesus described. But the man stopped anyway. And not just any man; a man all Jews would have been taught to find repugnant; a man to be avoided at all costs.
There are so many levels on which this parable is profoundly challenging. And there is one level on which this parable is profoundly substantive to who we are as people of faith, as followers of the one who told this parable.
This Sunday, we’ll search through this well-known and important parable to find secret treasures for our own deepest questions about how we can live as disciples of Christ, followers of Jesus.
See you Sunday!
Rev. Linda McDermott
Senior Associate Pastor & Associate Pastor of Worship