Thursday, November 26, 2009

NEIGHBOURS - Who are they and are they important to us?

(source: Thank you and credits to
Hello, greetings from shinystar to all who dropped by here again or perhaps this is the very first time you stopped over. Do any of us have neighbours whom we are extra friendly or close to? Or maybe some people may just have disturbed feeling with our neighbours because they are noisy or make a mess outside their house.

"In case of emergency or when we run into difficulties, who are the first person we thought of ? Who do we call? Neighbours? I have something to share with on happen earlier this morning:

A day after tomorrow is my travelling day again back to the east. How I wished time did not move so fast and can wait for us just a little longer ( I know and realized it is impossible to happen) so that I can more time do do my housework and for me to clear the mess before Christmas. I was bathing my daughter's doggie when I heard one of my neighbours calling out for help. She told us her car couldn,t start all of a sudden and in the car she stuffed a lot of durians for sale.

Around four of us including myself went and help her pushed the car which was somewhere nearby our home. After pushing the car for quite some time, the car still stay put. It wouldn't want to move. I was thinking what went wrong. Then two good samaritans on a motorcycle stopped over and helped us out. They share out their energy and help to push the car as well. Within seconds the car moved again and can start smoothly.. Vroom....vroom.. thanks so much to both the guys. If it had not for them, maybe we will have to push and push until we ran out of energy.

On the way as I was walking home, my neighbour told me, actually all of us need neighbours and without them, how are we going to solve our problems.
Love Your Neighbor as Yourself

And one of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, "What commandment is the foremost of all?" Jesus answered, "The foremost is, 'Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.' "The second is this, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these." (NAS, Mark 12:28-31)

Who is my Neighbor?

We commonly think of neighbors as the people who live near us, but Jesus meant it to include all mankind - even our enemies! Jesus told His famous parable of the Good Samaritan to make it clear that "love your neighbor" means to love all persons, everywhere - not just our friends, allies, countrymen, etc.:

One day an expert on Moses' laws came to test Jesus' orthodoxy by asking him this question: "Teacher, what does a man need to do to live forever in heaven?" Jesus replied, "What does Moses' law say about it?" "It says," he replied, "that you must 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 you must love your neighbor just as much as you love yourself." "Right!" Jesus told him. "Do this and you shall live!" The man wanted to justify (his lack of love for some kinds of people), so he asked, "Which neighbors?" Jesus replied with an illustration: "A Jew going on a trip from Jerusalem to Jericho was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes and money, and beat him up and left him lying half dead beside the road. "By chance a Jewish priest came along; and when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by. A Jewish Temple-assistant walked over and looked at him lying there, but then went on. "But a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw him, he felt deep pity. Kneeling beside him the Samaritan soothed his wounds with medicine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his donkey and walked along beside him till they came to an inn, where he nursed him through the night. The next day he handed the innkeeper two twenty-dollar bills and told him to take care of the man. 'If his bill runs higher than that,' he said, 'I'll pay the difference the next time I am here.' "Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the bandits' victim?" The man replied, "The one who showed him some pity." Then Jesus said, "Yes, now go and do the same." (TLB, Luke 10:25-37)

The Jews and Samaritans had been enemies for hundreds of years. The Jews of Jesus' society considered the Samaritans to be ceremonially unclean, socially outcast, religious heretics (Mays, p. 1029). Yet, the Samaritan took pity on the poor man who had been robbed and beaten. He gave freely of both his time and his money to help this Jewish man who was not only a stranger, but also an enemy from a foreign country. In His parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus challenges us to "Go and do the same."

To reinforce that "love your neighbor" applies to everyone, Jesus extended the rule of love to even our enemies!

"There is a saying, 'Love your friends and hate your enemies.' But I say: Love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! In that way you will be acting as true sons of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust too. If you love only those who love you, what good is that? Even scoundrels do that much. If you are friendly only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even the heathen do that. But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect. (TLB, Matthew 5:43-48)

Like the unselfish Samaritan man of Jesus' parable, we are called to extend our love and concern to all persons everywhere, as our neighbors. We should not exclude anyone or any group because of social status, a supposed character fault, religious difference, racial difference, ethnic difference, citizenship difference, etc.

Related verses: Matthew 22:34-39, Luke 6:27-38

Source taken from: (Thank you and credits to


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