Being a Good Samaritan, is usually thought of as about doing good to others, according to Christian accounts regarding the parable of the Good Samaritan. However, we should resist the temptation of falling into the sin of pride in being Good Samaritans, wherein we consider ourselves the good and the holy ones, helping out those who are not. The sacred teachings of Jesus in His holy Gospels should not be taken out of context, not should they be interpreted without His divine enlightenment. Jesus’ biblical stories, especially the well-known story of the Good Samaritan, tell us to love God by loving our neighbors and brethren.
As Christians, we usually identify ourselves with the Good Samaritan: we come to the aid of the victim. But if we examine the parable of the Good Samaritan closely, Jesus tells a story that shows human nature and represents our humanity. Jesus shows us through the parable that sometimes we are also the priest and Levite, who are too preoccupied with the pursuit of being “holy” to be aware of the cries of the victim and turned the other way. More importantly, Jesus is teaching us through this story to have no reservations and preference when we extend our help to others.
Like the parable, being a Good Samaritan is not just about doing good deeds within the Christian society, but it also about breaking religious and traditional boundaries. The people of Samaria (Samaritans) were considered as outcasts and unbelievers by the general community of Israel, who followed religion of Judaism. Jesus intentionally chose a Samaritan as the hero of the parable to show that doing good deeds is not bound to certain religions or denominations, but rather should be practiced by all men, regardless of their being Christians or unbelievers. More importantly, the story challenges us, as Christians, to put no boundaries on kindness and compassion when it comes to our neighbors and brethren. Jesus wonderfully crafted the story in support of God’s commandment to love others as we love ourselves.
We should also not forget that a lawyer came to question Jesus about who our neighbors are. Jesus figuratively described the lawyer and every law-abiding citizen as somehow like the priest and the Levite – they work within the law and want to know what it requires. Jesus teaches them to simplify the law based on God’s two basic laws (“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” and “Love your neighbor as yourself.” — Mark 12:30-31) and do not focus too much on the laws made by man. Instead, Jesus wants us to redefine and revise our man-made laws to be within the scope of God’s basic laws.
Being a Good Samaritan can be a humbling experience for anyone. Jesus described a beautiful story of selflessness and compassion in the parable of the Good Samaritan. We should not just consider people of the same religion, ideals and points of view as our neighbors. The fact that Jesus chose a non-Israelite character for His parable shows us that Jesus wants to save everyone, not just a select few. If we want to be Good Samaritans, as followers of Jesus Christ, we can at least show compassion and kindness to everyone we come in contact with. Being a Good Samaritan entails sacrifice, and while we may have to give something up, lose something, the reward can be more than satisfying.