Not My Fault! Not My Responsibility!
34 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came
where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity
on him. 35 He went to him and bandaged his wounds,
pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his
own donkey, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
As I read this text, I thought it food for thought. The point drawn from this passage was “It’s not about who made the wounds, it's about who can heal the wounds!”
Too often in discussions, I hear the statements, “I didn’t do it!” “That was my forefather!” “I don’t think like them!” “It’s not my fault.” “Why do we have to talk about something that happened 100’s of years ago?” “Why should I restore what was stolen from prior generations?” “I’m not responsible for any of this!” And honestly, there is a lot of truth to these statements.
The question I believe God wants us to ask is: “Can I heal these wounds? and not “Did I cause these wounds?”
Many of the issues we face are written in from the beginning of the country. They have been updated little by little and were not written or installed by those who enforce them today. Though the overwhelming majority don’t share the same mindset as our countries forefathers, the words and guarantees put in place by the forefathers are still protected by a powerful few who are determined no to see policy and law match the desires of the citizens it serves.
As one benefiting from a system, its kinda foolish to ask one to make changes that will take away an advantage, or even level a playing field in a country that is already divided between the top 1% and the bottom 99%.
But Jesus introduces us to the Good Samaritan. He encounters this man who has been beaten down, robbed, stripped, and left for dead. When he encounters him, he sees a human being that has been wounded, and though he didn’t inflict any wounds, he takes it upon himself to help this man heal.
He pours oil and wine on the man's wounds. This is his attempt to not only heal the wounds but to prevent infection. See, the hateful act committed by the previous people on the road could cause a serious infection to set in the man. This infection could be so great, that the man could survive the attack, but die from the infection caused. The Good Samaritan decided he would do his best to prevent this. He knew this could preserve a limb, or even improve the quality of life.
After carrying this man on his beast, the Good Samaritan puts the man up in the inn and further took care of him. I believe in the inn, he not only cleaned and replaced his bandages, and made sure the man had a comfortable place to heal, I believe he both listened and spoke to this man in an attempt to help him heal emotionally.
See, after trauma, its not just the physical portion of us that must be attended too, but it the emotional and mental as well. There is nothing like having one's humanity disregarded to make one feel less than to one that considered them greater than. When one is violated, their entire system of trust and community suffers. They carry the trauma from the attack into future relationships and endeavors, and they often suffer from fear, anguish, and turmoil from the past. But, the Good Samaritan attends to him in the inn.
Remember, this man's condition and state are not his faults, but they are his responsibility. He did not injure this man. He did not rob this man. He did not strip this man. And thank God, He did not abandon this man! He didn’t value his possessions greater than he valued the man who was dying. He reached into hit riches and used his wealth and health to give the man all he could.
I know that sounds crazy. He sees someone suffering, and wants to see them healthy and whole. He can not give the man everything he lost, but he can give the man a chance to heal and a fair chance to rebuild what he lost. Jesus end’s the story, “Go and do likewise!”.
Let us not get caught up in who’s a fault it was, or who sinned, but let us acknowledge what we see and feel. If you see someone hurting, have compassion. If you see someone in need or being treated unfairly, request that they are treated justly. It’s the Christlike thing to do.