Episode 087 – Parable of the Good Samaritan Pt 4: Imagine The Good

Key Passage(s): Luke 10:29-37

Jesus didn’t tell the Parable of the Good Samaritan so we would help people in need. He told the parable to smash our categories of who’s “in” and who’s “out”. The Samaritans were the most hated people on the planet for Jesus’s audience. And yet, to their utter shock and anger, Jesus cast the Samaritan as the hero of the story, which is like saying, “The Good Hamas Member.” The story confronted Jesus’s audience with their inability to love enemies and to imagine they could be good. If our world is going to change, it requires a radical love fueled by a  more hopeful imagination.

Discussion Questions

  • What was your biggest takeaway from the teaching?
  • What are you feeling right now as a result of this teaching? Hope? Anger? Frustration? Confusion? Gratitude? Why do you think you feel the way you do?
  • It was stated in the teaching, “If we can’t love those we don’t agree with, then we don’t have a clue as to what it means to follow Jesus.” What are your thoughts on this?
  • It was also stated, “Jesus loved and accepted people without ever watering down his values and convictions.” Where is this most challenging for you to do?
  • Who do you identify as “enemies” in your own life?
  • If Jesus clearly wants us to love all people, including our enemies, how well are you doing with this? If you’re struggling to do so, what in your own heart needs to change in order to love them well?
  • What does loving your “enemies” look like for you?
  • How will you begin living out the truths of this teaching this week?

For Further Study

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  1. John Maguire October 22, 2019 at 7:26 am - Reply

    Brad – –

    Thank you for your teaching of Jesus regarding the Good Samaritan. I was the Executive Director of DCTalk/TobyMac’s the E.R.A.C.E. Foundation (Eliminating Racism And Creating Equality) for a number of years. Racial reconciliation is not political correctness it is SPIRITUAL CORRECTNESS. Thank you for the teaching and the challenge to all followers of Jesus Christ.

    May God continue to use you to impact His Kingdom on earth as it is in Heaven.

    Thank you!

  2. Winn Sammons October 22, 2019 at 11:35 am - Reply

    Awesome teaching! I believe that labels (or boxes) are used in various ways as a means of depersonalizing a situation to avoid the heart component of the conflict. For example, it is mentally/emotionally/spiritually easier to address the “abortion issue” than to be confronted with a frightened young lady who’s faced with one of the turning points of her life, or it’s easier to deal with the “illegal immigration issue” than to emotionally address an undocumented Mexican family with hardworking parents and cute-as-a-button little children. And, to make matters worse, when such challenging social issues arise, labels get assigned to both sides by the other! Then, instead of addressing the reality that there are wonderful folks on the other side of the issue de jour, the “them-versus-us” game begins. At that point, “game over” because no one wants to talk with “them.” Sad tribute about Christ followers. How to break the impasse? Dialogue, the goal of which is to learn; NOT debate, the goal of which is to win! But, dialogue requires IMAGINING THAT THE ENEMY CAN BE, AND OFTEN IS, GOOD — good enough and loved by God enough to warrant sitting down and truly listening to and talking with! Thanks, Brad. Winn

  3. Crystal October 27, 2019 at 1:39 pm - Reply

    After hearing this I would like to think over the years helping others as I have, I imagine the good often. I have also learned that in doing so, setting boundaries is important. Thank you for this blessed teaching Brad!

  4. Claire Polar March 24, 2024 at 7:40 am - Reply

    This! I’ve been needing this for awhile in the context of this strange world we’re living in. I’ve battled with “what would Jesus do” vs “enemies” vs “fighting for good” vs “blanket tolerance” vs “love thy neighbor,” and you have appropriately addressed those for me. Thank you.

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