Who Is My Neighbor?
Luke Ten


      Luke gave us a record of Jesus selecting seventy men and sending them forth to preach. They were sent two and two into every city with God's message. We are challenged to become more deeply involved in God's work because, "The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few." Jesus knew they would be received by some and rejected by other. He said to them, "He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me." Jesus pronounced woes on Chorazin and Bethsaida for rejecting the messengers of the Lord. The seventy were able to do great thing for God. Even the devils were subject unto them in the name of Jesus. Jesus said, "I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven." Through the work of Jesus the work of Satan can be destroyed. These men were taught not to rejoice in the power that had been given to them, but rather they were to rejoice in the hope of salvation.


          The parable of the Good Samaritan is given only by Luke. A lawyer asked Jesus "What shall I do to inherit eternal life?" He was told that he must love God supremely and love his neighbor as himself. Willing to justify himself the lawyer ask "Who is my neighbour?" Jesus answered this question with the parable of the Good Samaritans. The priest and Levite both disregarded the law of God and the concern that they should have for others. The Samaritan was compassionate and he was neighbor to the man in need. We too must be neighbors to all who need help.


      Jesus went to Bethany, the home of Mary, Martha and Lazarus. Mary sat at the Lord's feet and heard His word. Martha was busy serving. She was upset that Mary left her to do all the service. Martha was agitated over earthly things. Mary chose that good part that would not be taken away from her. Let us focus on those things that would be most pleasing to God.


          The work of the seventy -- Luke 10:1-20: The Lord sent out seventy of His followers to carry His message into every village. He said, "The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest." Sadly today there are still only a limited numbers of workers. The work of the disciples would be difficult at times. They would be like "lambs into a pack of wolves." The Lord sent them out to do His work and to learn to depend on Him daily. They were not to get side tracked with things that would waste their time. They were to pray and to search for peace loving people to assist them. There would be families who would provide for their needs because "the labourer is worthy of his hire." If they were received by a city they were to "heal the sick, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you." If a city would not receive them they were to shake the dust from their feet as a witness against them. Sadly, God's kingdom came near to those people and they rejected it. These people will be worse off than Sodom, Tyre and Sidon at the Judgment Day because they have literally rejected the Christ. Jesus told the disciples, "He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me." The seventy were excited that demons were subject unto them. Jesus told them that instead of rejoicing that the demons were subject to them they should be happy that their names were written in heaven!


          Jesus thanked the Father -- Luke 10:21-24: Jesus was thankful that His message had touched the hearts of ordinary people. It seemed to be a hidden message to the wise and educated people. Jesus was interested in what seemed good in the Father's sight. Our interest should also focus on the Father's will. Jesus as man had received all things from the Father. After receiving these things from the Father Jesus became the Lord and Sovereign giver of all spiritual things. The disciples were truly blessed to have seen what they saw. Jesus said, "Many prophets and kings have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them." We too should be happy that we have been permitted to see the truth about God, Christ, His church and salvation.


          The Good Samaritan -- Luke 10:25-37: A lawyer asked Jesus "Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus asked this man what the Scriptures said about eternal life. He said, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength, and mind. They also say, Love your neighbors as much as you love yourself." Jesus acknowledged that this was the correct answer. He told the man to do this and he would have eternal life. The man wanted to justify himself or to show that he was smart and knew what he was talking about. He asked Jesus, "Who are my neighbors?" Jesus replied with the parable of the Good Samaritan. A priest and a Levite passed by the poor, abused man and did nothing. The Samaritan man saw him and ministered to his every need. Jesus asked "Which one of these three people was a real neighbor to the man who was beaten up by robbers?" The lawyer said, "The one who showed pity." Jesus said, "Go, and do thou likewise." Let us learn to be neighbors to others, both physically and spiritually.


          Jesus visits Martha and Mary -- Luke 10:38-42: As Jesus and His disciples were traveling they went into the home of a man named Lazarus, of Bethany; his sisters were Mary and Martha. Martha welcomed him into her home. Mary, the sister of Martha sat down at the feet of the Jesus and was listening to what He said. In the mind of Martha this caused a serious problem. She was worried about all that had to be done. She went to Jesus and said, "Lord, doesn't it bother you that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her to come and help me!" Jesus' reply to her is well know, "Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things." Martha was worried and upset about so many things. Jesus wanted her to understand that those things were necessary but that what Mary had chosen was more important. He said. "Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her." The salvation of the soul is the first and greatest of all human concerns.


          Jesus is the Son of God. Do you believe in Jesus as Savior? You can enjoy redemption in the blood of the Lamb and also forgiveness and hope because Jesus is Savior. To become a Christian you must hear the gospel (Romans 10:17), believe in Jesus as the Christ (Mark 16:16), repent of all sins (Acts 17:30), confess Christ as Lord (Romans 10:9-10) and be baptized for remission of sins. (Acts 2:38) After baptism remain faithful to God. (Revelation 2:10) Choose the good part -- Salvation in Christ!