Luke, Chapter 10

- פ ו י -

Jesus Explains the Verse: “Love Your Neighbor as Yourself”

25 And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? 26He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? 27And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. 28And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. 29But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour? 30 And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. 31And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side. 33But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, 34And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee. 36Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? 37And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.” (Luke 10:25-37)

Jesus interprets the famous verse from the Old Testament: “And you shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Leviticus 19:18). A scholarly man asks him: “And who is my neighbor?” (Luke 10:29). Jesus then tells the famous “Parable of the Good Samaritan”. According to the story, a man is attacked by robbers on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho. A priest and a Levite pass by, but offer the man no help. Only a passing Samaritan shows mercy, bandages the man’s wounds, and gives him water to drink. The Samaritan even pays a fee so that the owners of a nearby inn will take care of him and let him rest. Jesus uses this story to teach the universal principle of caring for others regardless of their religion, race, or sex, and not to expect reward for the kindness we show. Every human being has an equal right to live, even those who are completely foreign to us. Jesus teaches us that this is the deeper meaning of”love your neighbor as yourself.”

Humanity, or humane behavior, is actually God-like behavior – creating and blessing, rather than causing hurt or damage.