LIKE A GOOD NEIGHBOR, JESUS IS THERE
Below are notes to a sermon preached Sunday morning, Aug. 8, 1999, at Gospel Light Baptist Church, Albany, Georgia:
LIKE A GOOD NEIGHBOR, JESUS IS THERE
By Michael D. O’Neal Pastor, Gospel Light Baptist Church Albany, Georgia
Scripture Reading: Luke 10:30-37
Text: Luke 10:36
Luke 10:36 Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?
Introduction: The primary lesson of this passage was to illustrate the second commandment, to love your neighbor as yourself. However, there is also a wonderful picture here of how, Jesus, the very best “Good Neighbor” of all, can rescue an individual who has been wounded by the devil, and turn him over to a pastor and church for care until He returns.
State Farm Insurance Company has a slogan, “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there.” The indication is that they will be there when you need them. I want you to know, beloved, that Jesus is the VERY BEST NEIGHBOR you could have.
From this scripture, I want to remind us today that:
I. PEOPLE ARE DAMAGED
Luke 10:30 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.
This passage can illustrate the truth of what sin can do to either saved or lost people. Notice the thieves left the man “half dead.” A lost man is dead in trespasses and sins, but that means he is dead SPIRITUALLY, while his flesh is alive. A Christian is half dead, too, in that he is to reckon his flesh to be dead to sin. However, when Christians are not living right, they are also considered to be dead:
Revelation 3:1 And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.
The thieves that beat up the man were at least four in number. For our application today, we will call the members of this wicked gang, Sin, Satan, Self, and Society.
A. They stripped him
* Sin can strip a man of kindness, intelligence, respect, character, money, health, and happiness.
* Although Satan cannot get the Christian’s soul, he can help him to lose his TESTIMONY. We are to adorn ourselves with good works before the world, so that they can see by looking at us what Jesus can do in a person’s life. Sometimes a believer loses his testimony. You remember how Simon Peter denied his Lord, even cursing and swearing?
B. They stole from him
* Sin has stolen many precious things from people. If you don’t believe it, just visit the rescue mission.
* The devil can steal a lot of things from a child of God as well, besides his testimony — his health, his joy, his fellowship with God, his fruitfulness in God’s service, his prayer life, and his peace of mind.
C. They struck him
* The devil is not your friend. He is your enemy.
* Sin is not a delight, although it appears that way. It is a DESTROYER.
D. They stranded him
* Do you remember the story of the Prodigal Son? After his wicked friends had drained him of his inheritance money, they left him to work alone in the pig pen.
* When the devil is through with you, you will discover that the friends he gave you were really not friends at all.
II. PASSERS-BYS ARE DISINTERESTED
Luke 10:31-32 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.
Psalms 142:4 I looked on my right hand, and beheld, but there was no man that would know me: refuge failed me; no man cared for my soul.
A. The preoccupied never even saw him.
B. The profit seekers would lose money if they stopped long enough to help him.
C. The pleasure seekers were too busy enjoying themselves to help him.
D. The pious didn’t think he was a good prospect for church membership.
III. A PHYSICIAN WAS DISPATCHED
Luke 10:33-34 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, 34 And 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.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
A. Notice the Savior’s coming
* The Samaritan “came where he was.”
* Jn. 3:16; Jn. 1:1,14, 2 Tim. 3:16.
* Religion is man trying to reach up to God.
* Salvation is God reaching down to man.
* When a believer errs in His walk, Jesus, the Good Shepherd, goes looking for the sheep that went astray.
B. Notice the Savior’s compassion
* “he had compassion on him.”
* Jesus cares for the individual.
C. Notice the Savior’s cure
* “bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine.”
* Oil and wine were used as medicine in the Bible.
* They are generally looked upon as being representative, respectively, of the Holy Spirit and of joy. Both the Holy Spirit and joy have to do with giving strength to the believer (Eph. 3:16; Neh. 8:10).
D. Notice the Savior’s carriage
* “set him on his own beast.”
* I’m glad the Savior carries us when we are beaten up. Ref: the popular “Footprints in the Sand” prose.
E. Notice the Savior’s care
* “brought him to an inn, and took care of him.”
* Jesus can fix WHATEVER is wrong in an individual’s life.
* He can repair the broken health, the broken home, and the broken heart.
* Most of all He can mend the person who has been wounded by the devil and left half dead.
IV. PROTECTION HAS BEEN DELEGATED
Luke 10:35 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.
A. Notice the friend in the inn
* The host
* This reminds me of a local pastor.
* God gives His sheep pastors, according to Eph. 4.
* I believe every child of God who is not a pastor needs a pastor and God has one for him.
B. Notice the function of the inn
* “Take care of him…”
* The main function of the assembled church is to mend, mold, and make good disciples. At church believers should be strengthened for the task of being good ambassadors for Christ out in the world.
C. Notice the finances for the work
* “he took out two pence, and gave them to the host”
* Two things are to finance the work of the local church: tithes and offerings
* “whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.”
* “whatsoever thou spendest more” – time, tears, travail, teaching, toughness, and tenderness
D. Notice the future and its repayment
* ” when I come again, I will repay thee.”
* Amen! Jesus is coming again!
* At the judgment seat of Christ, He will reward believers.
Conclusion: If you aren’t saved, you have been abused by the devil. Without help, you will die and go to hell. Jesus wants to save you and will, if you will only trust Him (Eph. 2:8; 1 Cor. 15:3-4).
We who are saved have been left here not only to take care of those Jesus saves, but ALSO to go out into the world, in the stead of the Good Samaritan, and take the healing good news of the gospel to rescue those who have been had their lives ruined by Satan.
When we assemble, let’s look for opportunities to win unsaved visitors. However, let’s remember that our primary purpose for assembling is to exhort one another (Heb. 10:25), edify one another, and encourage one another to be good witnesses for the Lord Jesus Christ out in the world.