Times are tough, people are hurting, illness is spreading and we are all growing tired. We need healing and hope that we are living in a good world instead of the world that is beating us down daily. When I am beatdown I always turn to Luke 10:30-37 for restoration.
30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’ 36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” 37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
I look at the three items the good Samaritan shares with the wounded man. Wine, Oil and cloth bandages. This is the reverse order than listed in the Bible but it is my approach to understanding.
The wine was to clean the wound and to be used as an antiseptic. No wounds will heal without being cleansed properly. Wounds of the skin or wounds of the heart have to be purified in order to heal. I know that when I cut myself that my husband always bathes my wound in isopropyl alcohol and it hurts immensely but I know it will prepare the wound for healing. The wine also represents an agent that would keep infection away in the future days as my cut heals.
It is the same when our heart is wounded. First it hurts immensely and then Jesus steps in to purify and heal. Jesus’ cleansing and my husband’s cleaning of my wounds are representative of what the Good Samaritan was doing. Taking the first step in love and kindness for our neighbors. Jesus also offers the protection of helping my heart not hurt in the future. He does this by interceding in my heart as The Holy Spirit when the pain flares again with a new wound. This gives me the confidence I will always heal with Jesus.
John 15:12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”
Let’s look at the olive oil that the good Samaritan spread onto the man’s wounds. Olive oil is soothing and provides a barrier or sealant to allow the wound to be undisturbed during healing. My husband may cover my wound with an antibiotic cream for the same reason, to protect my cut. Jesus provides a blanket of protection over my soul and heart in the same manner. This blanket of protection is never ending and won’t wear off after healing.
If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,”
and you make the Most High your dwelling,
10 no harm will overtake you,
no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra;
you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
14 “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him;
The final element in this parable are the bandages. The outside covering of the wound that I like to think of as our faith. When this man wore the bandages, he could be reminded that someone else cared about him and took the time to show kindness and help him. Just as my husband places a Band-Aid over my cut to show me he loves me and will care for me here on earth with his kindness and love. I reflect on those bandages in the parable as my faith for Jesus. I want to wear those bandages (faith) out for everyone to see. I want people to know Jesus taught me kindness and how to appreciate others’ kindness for me. Kindness is love. God is love.
Colossians 3:12-14 12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
The final thing I would like to talk about in this parable is how the good Samaritan promised to pay all costs incurred by the man while convalescing at the inn. This too is a beautiful reminder that Jesus not only takes care for us in the present, as we are healing, but in the future too. He died for us, His blood spilled for us, and he ascended to Heaven to continue to love and protect us. God sent Jesus to show us His unconditional love for each of us no matter our color, our thoughts, our difference. We are all neighbors and we are to love and show kindness without thought. The priest and the Levite we both too concerned about what others would think or how much time it would take to help the man. The good Sarmatian cared not but loved.
Galatians 20:20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
As I end this blog I ask you to consider loving those you don’t feel love for. It may be a political party, an ethnicity, a type of person, a religious affiliation. I ask you to turn in prayer and ask God to soften your heart because these are His children. He created each of us for a purpose and that purpose was not to hate but to love and be kind. We are vessels that God uses for good. Don’t let your vessel become cracked and leak but keep yourself strong and unmarred. My love and gratitude for you-LoLo
2 Timothy 20-21 Now in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver but also of wood and clay, some for honorable use, some for dishonorable. Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.