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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"Not Just A Parable"

July 14, 2007

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Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. Luke 10:31-32

Think back to the first time you heard the story of the Good Samaritan. Do you remember how sad you felt for the man who had been beaten, and how angry you were with the Priest and Levite who passed by?

Jesus’ parable is not just a story. Not anymore. Not after what happened on June 23rd to LaShanda Calloway in Wichita, Kansas. Security cameras at a convenience store tell her story. They show LaShanda in an argument with another shopper, being stabbed, and then five people stepping over her bleeding body.

You may rightly wonder, “After five people stepped over and around LaShanda, who is the person who played the part of the “Good Samaritan?” The store’s surveillance cameras reveal that one of the spectators did stop but not to offer any assistance, compassion, or aid. The person stopped just long enough to take a picture of LaShanda with their cell phone.

There is no “Good Samaritan” in LaShanda’s story.

There was no one who felt compelled to help her. There was no one to pour olive oil on her wounds and apply a bandage to stop the bleeding. There was no one to take her to the hospital and no one willing to pay the bill for her recovery.

LaShanda had no Good Samaritan. She was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

I have to believe that none of the five who passed by LaShanda that day were Christians. I have to believe that any follower of Jesus would have used their cell phone to call the police or an ambulance, rather than taking a picture of the dying woman. I believe these things because I am convinced that anyone who has been saved by Jesus will do all they can to reflect the Savior’s love to those around them who are hurting.

Understand that “doing all you can” doesn’t mean we have to turn off our brains when we render assistance to some unfortunate. “Doing all you can” doesn’t mean we are compelled to put ourselves into danger when we’re offering our help. But, “doing all you can” does mean God’s people think smart, do what is right, and don't pass by on the other side.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, I give thanks that You decided to stop and save me rather than passing by on the other side. Because You have redeemed me, rather than taking a picture of my plight, I have eternal life. Now, I ask that I may do all I can to help the wounded that I encounter today. In Your Name, Amen.

Today's Bible Readings: Amos 4-6    Galatians 1

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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