40 Days of Discipline

40 Days of Discipline: Day 30 – Service

6 Comments

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

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

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’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

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

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

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. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 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. 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.’

“Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”

The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”

Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.” (Luke 10:25-37)

 

Yesterday we dealt with how the Discipline of Service expects us to think (the mind of Christ).   Today we will focus on what the Discipline of Service requires us to do.   For example, how far are we expected to go?   Or, should our focus be on physical or spiritual needs?

For our review we will consider the story of the Good Samaritan. We considered this parable during the second week of our journey but it is worth coming back to.   Please prayerfully read the passage and answer the questions below.

Today’s Questions for comments:

  • What does the story tell us about how far the Good Samaritan was prepared to go?
  • What are your thoughts on the priority of meeting spiritual needs versus physical needs?

6 thoughts on “40 Days of Discipline: Day 30 – Service

  1. The good samaritan gave the innkeeper some money to look after the man and he was prepared to go even further and reimburse the innkeeper for any other expenses that might have incurred. This shows me that the good samaritan was prepared to be devoted to the man’s well being.. He made a commitment by saying that he would return and also by him willing to pay for the man to be taken care of.

  2. What does the story tell us about how far the Good Samaritan was prepared to go?
    He was willing to go from “here to eternity”. Funny but true. The Samaritan met the man’s immediate needs and then took appropriate actions to ensure that his future needs would also be met. I see also the principle that the Samaritan met the needs of the man as far as his (the Samaritan’s) resource could take him (the man).

    What are your thoughts on the priority of meeting spiritual needs versus physical needs?
    While the scripture tells us that the spiritual is of more importance than the physical (1 Timothy 4:8, For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.) the scriptures (even evident in this verse) shows us that the physical and the spiritual are intricately intertwined and that this understanding is required if we are to understand God’s salvation plan and fulfill His Great Commission. “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us….. – John 1:14) . A part of Jesus’s mission was to show us The Father (John 14:9) ad this he did by expressing The Father’s love via acts of compassion in the physical – (healing the sick, raising the dead) and demonstrating the Father’s power in the physical (via miracles and signs – which when they occured benefited those present ….feeding of the 5,000 with bread and fish; water to wine at the wedding feast, etc). Others see Christ in us as we minister and serve them via physical means. Spiritual ills manifest themselves physically. It is through these physical manifestations of our spiritual ills that doors are opened and opportunities are provided for us to provide the spiritual medicine of the Gospel to the lost and to each other. Yesterday’s devotion song highlights the marriage between physical and spiritual……as we look at the physical through spirit filled eyes we see and should seize the opportunity to provide those in need with the Lord.

  3. What does the story tell us about how far the Good Samaritan was prepared to go?
    The Samaritan did not consider the religion, character etc of the man. He just saw a man in need and showed compassion. He took the time to get involved.. He willingly shared his resources. He did not consider repayment from the man. He did everything to ensure he was taken care of even when he could not physically do so.

    Thoughts on the priority of meeting physical needs versus spiritual needs.
    Like Cuaco, I believe that the spiritual and physical are intertwined. By meeting the man’s physical needs it showed the compassion of the Samaritan, even more than words could have shown.
    He also saw that the man was in no condition to be told of his spiritual needs.
    It reminds me of Elijah 1 Kings ch 19, when he was frightened and discouraged after he heard that Jezebel wanted to kill him. When Elijah ran away and thought it best to die, God sent an angel to give him support. He provided something for him to eat and water. He showed compassion. God’s compassion, by providing for Elijah’s physical needs, showed Elijah His love and understanding.
    I hope I have explained clearly.

  4. The Samaritan understood the traveller’s immediate physical need and understood the future needs that may occur, regardless of the difference in religion and nationality. He was interested in the the man’s health and recovery from such an ordeal.

    The spiritual and physical needs are equally important. Sometimes we become too spiritual and we promise to pray for a person’s deliverance from whatever predicament they may be facing. A man who is hungry NOW or needs clothes NOW does not want to hear about you praying – his physical needs are bothering him NOW. If a person’s physical needs is present, we need to attend to that first, before his/her spiritual needs. A person can’t concentrate on the gospel when his/her stomach is empty. It is seen in John 6:1-14, after a long day of teaching (spiritual needs, Jesus provided food for 5000 (physical need).

  5. The comments emphasize how far the Good Samaritan was prepared to go. He was prepared to go all out. In fact, he took enormous risks as a Samaritan to help the “half dead” man. Do we even leave our comfort zone to serve? Also, as highlighted by the comments, meeting both spiritual and physical needs is very important. God’s command to go into all the world and preach the Gospel is a call to service because man’s most important need is to be restored to God. However, James 2:15-16 asks, “Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?”

  6. Both physical and spiritual needs are important. From the previous comments ,the physical need appears to be a precursor for meeting the spiritual need. It is impossible to meet the spiritual need if the person is physically dead.

    May be the physical act done by a caring person is exactly what is required to make another person aware of their spiritual needs.

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