How many times have we, the body of the Christ, been admonished through sermon to be the good Samaritan? How many times have we sat through another version of this directive? Why do we need to keep hearing this? Because we aren’t doing it. That is the problem.
Who is Christ? He is God, made man, to deliver compassion on us all. That was and is his prime directive. He was and is the compassion of God embodied in a form we can understand. Through his physical life here on earth, he showed us the necessary consequence of willfully falling short of the ideal standard of good that is God, while revealing to us the ideal standard of mercy that is also God, both by dying in our place. He taught us truth, logically connecting our emotion and imagination to the reality in which we find ourselves living, the reality of Jesus Christ. And God revealed to us that Christ is who he claimed to be by raising him bodily from the dead to walk amongst the people again as is the written testimony of Jesus’ closest followers.
What did Christ do? He judged us and had mercy on us. What are we to do? We are to look more like Christ every day.
So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
— Philippians 2:1–11
Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.
— Colossians 3:2
Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.
— Colossians 3:11
So how should Christians pave the way of the good Samaritan? How can we practically lead the world to Christ and show them who Christ is through us? Where should we be, and what should we look like?
We should be the professors and teachers crossing the road to seek and teach truth, the nurses and physicians crossing the road to the cutting edge of research to lead the charge of healing the sick and preventing harm, the political leaders crossing the road to speak truth into the public realm, the mothers and fathers crossing the road to stand forever by each other and by our children to lead them to Christ, the man crossing the road to help his neighbor stand. We should be the quiet, steady, powerful and pervasive force that always stands on the other side of the road, no matter where we are.
Why did the Christian cross the road? To get to the truthful side.