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Won’t You Be My Neighbor

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Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

Text: Luke 10:25-37 (NIV)

25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

27 He answered: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’a; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’b”

28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”

29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of 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, took him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two silver coinsc 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.”

Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”[1]

I.         Introduction: Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood

II.       A Quest: Seeking to Disparage Jesus

A.       A Calculated Test

1.        The Source: A Legal Expert

a)        Practicing Law

b)       Presenting a Challenge

2.        The Method: A Profound Question

a)        Desiring to Defeat Death

b)       Defining a Course of Action

B.       A Counter Tactic

1.        Answered by a Question

a)        Concerning Revelation

b)       Concerning Interpretation

2.        Answered by the Asker

a)        Loving God

(1)     With Your Whole Heart

(2)     With Your Whole Soul

(3)     With Your Whole Strength

(4)     With Your Whole Mind

b)       Loving Neighbor

(1)     Your Neighbor: Ownership

(2)     Yourself: Excellence

C.       A Confirmed Truth

1.        A Right Answer

2.        A Recipe for Life

III.     A Quiz: Seeking A Definition

A.       Seeking To Limit the Definition of Neighbor

1.        Righteousness Sought by Limiting a Definition

2.        Righteousness Sought by Limiting a Relationship

B.       Seeking to Expand the Definition of Neighbor

1.        Through The Unknown Victim: Needing Compassion

2.        Through The Unknown Scoundrels: Withholding Compassion

3.        Through The Unexpected Hero: Giving Compassion

IV.     A Query: Seeking A Decision

A.       The Choice Called For

B.       The Choice Obvious

C.       The Choice to Copy

V.       Conclusion: Its not the Neighborhood of Make Believe. Its Real


a Deut. 6:5

b Lev. 19:18

c Greek two denarii

[1] The Holy Bible : New International Version. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996, c1984.

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