Jesus’ testimony in the parable of the good Samaritan is that God commands us to love one another sacrificially on earth as it is in heaven (vv28&37). Practical sacrificial ways include tithes and offerings of our income, going out of our way to help someone whether we know them or not, buying a sandwich for someone on the street, volunteering our time, etc.
A man stood up who knew the Law and tried to trap Jesus. He said, “Teacher, what must I do to have life that lasts forever?” -Luke 10:25-29 (NLV)
While we can relate to each of the characters in this parable at various times in our life, have you ever considered how you are like the lawyer? A prosecuting attorney’s job is to try to get a defendant to trip up on his testimony, making the defendant’s case appear less plausible while making the lawyer’s case look better.
We all know Jesus’ “Greatest Commandments” quite well (v27), but like this lawyer, we try to pick at Jesus’ testimony saying/thinking “When I win the lottery, I’m going to be the most generous person on the planet.” Or “When I get a raise in pay, I’ll start tithing from that raise”. And what about time? Sometimes, we catch ourselves using the excuse “If I only had more time, I would graciously volunteer some of it”.
Whether we’re waiting for God to give us a raise in pay (or at least the winning lottery numbers), or we’re waiting for God to give us 25 hours in a day, we’re really trying to make the case that Jesus’ testimony doesn’t add up because God is asking us to do something today that we just can’t do today.
Our Father is a loving Father and takes no pleasure in frustrating us. But He does expect us to do what He knows we can do. Loving God and all of His children sacrificially is the hallmark of Christianity.
As Jesus looked up, he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. “Truly I tell you,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” -Luke 21:1-4