Going Out of Our Way

Admirable actions

The Good Samaritan did something the priest and Levite were unwilling to do. He went way out of his way, expending time, effort, and money to aid the wounded traveler. He was willing to be seriously inconvenienced (Luke 10:25-37).

The father of the Prodigal didn’t wait for his son to come to him—he ran to meet him! He threw a big party in his joy over his son’s return. The elder brother was anything but happy about his father’s giving his younger brother such a lavish homecoming (Luke 15:11-32).

The master of the servant who owed him millions of dollars cancelled the entire debt. He didn’t have to do this—he chose to. The forgiven servant, however, was not willing to pass on the grace he had received. He insisted that a fellow servant pay him what he owed, turning a deaf ear to his pleas for mercy, which echoed his own pitiful pleading when he himself had begged his master to be patient with him (Matthew 18:21-35).

Marked contrasts

The priest and Levite, the elder brother, and the unforgiving servant are cold and cruelly uncaring. In contrast, the Good Samaritan, the welcoming father, and the merciful master show warmth, love, and grace.

Admirable attitude

One word all three parables have in common is compassion (Matthew 18:27; Luke 10:33; 15:20). Compassion is what moved the master to forgive his servant, the Samaritan to stop and help, and the father to run out to meet his returning son.

Is it any wonder that this same word compassion is used numerous times of our Lord (Matthew 9:36; 14:14; 15:32; 20:34; Mark 1:41; Luke 7:13)?

Can others see by our actions a reflection of His compassionate heart?

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