March 25, 2021 –
Background Luke 10:25-37
The Christian road system is quite remarkable in its extent—Salvation, Revelation, Designation, and finally, the road to Jericho.
The refrain in Donald S. McCossan’s excellent gospel song, “On The Jericho Road,” says,
“On the Jericho road, there’s room for just two,
No more and no less, just Jesus and you;
Each burden He’ll bear, each sorrow He’ll share,
There’s never a care for Jesus, is there.”
I question the first two lines. It’s more accurate to say, “On the Jericho road, there’s room for more than two; there’s Jesus, you, and a neighbor in need.” This wording reflects what Jesus’ story of the Good Samaritan is about; Jesus, you, and an opportunity to love.
As we journey on the fourth road, the Jericho road, we show our love for God through our love for the neighbor. Jericho is the opportunity to be transformed from a spectator into a participant from being self-righteous and unconcerned about the lost to being broken-hearted and having a sense of responsibility for the lost neighbor’s condition. One steps outside his / her comfort zone.
This steeply descending road — 15 miles long and descends 3,300 ft. — Winds through desolate and rocky places that easily hide robbers. It was a notoriously dangerous road. It was so bad that the Romans placed a fort on the road.
The Bible links one’s love for God with one’s responsibility toward others. Someone has described the love for God as faith and love for neighbor as faith in action. A person starts on the road to Jericho only after they have expressed their love for God. Their continuance on the road is determined by their reaction to encountering a neighbor in need. Somewhere on the way, the traveler confronts a “pothole.” The Bible describes potholes as people who have “fallen among thieves.” And the Believer who is walking with God looks at stumbling blocks and problems and sees OPPORTUNITES to show their Love for God and neighbor.
Believers serve and witness to all men and women no matter their nationality, sex, age, or any other demographic. Our witness is to be practical—we meet them at the point of their need. We do it from a heart of love. Love is faith in action.