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On "Reaching Your World" Luis Palau tackles the question of "Who is my neighbor?" You’ll be encouraged to reach out to the people in your life with the Good News.
Did you ever switch schools when you were young? Remember the first day on the playground? When you didn’t know who to play with or what to do? That is one of the worst feelings in the world: seeing everyone else play, and feeling like an outsider.
In Matthew, Jesus says the two greatest commandments are to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind,” and to “love your neighbor as yourself.” And who is our neighbor? Jesus’ story about the Good Samaritan says everyone who is in need. In great need these days are those who feel like outsiders in any way.
God knows the outsiders need special care and attention. In Deuteronomy, it says that God “executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the foreigner, giving him food and clothing.” In most societies, foreigners are the people with the least power, who feel most on the outside of the culture. The next verse is a command to those who love God: “Love the foreigner, therefore, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.” God says to love the outsiders, because we were once outsiders ourselves! We have all felt alone, and so it is our job, as members of God’s family, to make everyone feel loved, wanted, and cared for. In Jesus’ name, let’s make the outsiders insiders!
This is Luis Palau.
There are some stories that come up in every children’s Sunday School class. One is the story of the Good Samaritan. A Jewish traveler was beaten by robbers and left by the side of the road. Both a priest and a Levite walk by. Both ignore the traveler. The Bible even says they “pass by on the other side.” They didn’t want to be near him. But the best part of the story is when the Samaritan saves the day. What your Sunday School teacher may not have said was that Samaritans and Jews did not get along. Of all of the people who pass by, the Samaritan man was the one least likely to stop and help. But he did.
This Samaritan man stopped, looked, and did something. He gave his time, his money, and even potentially his reputation. He did all of this to help a stranger who was in need.
When Jesus told this story, he asked those who were listening, “Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” When they said, “The Samaritan,” Jesus responded, “You go, and do likewise.”
It’s not just a story to Jesus, and it shouldn’t be to us either. Our calling as Christ followers is to help those in need, whoever they are and however they need us. When we take this story and put it into action, our neighbors will see God’s love shining through us and want to know more about the God we serve, and the Savior we love. This is Luis Palau.
In life, people sometimes fail us. They break their promises or don’t keep commitments. But God always keeps His word. His promises never fail. On "Reaching Your World" Luis Palau shares some of God’s biggest promises to us.