sermons, songs, etceteras
Good morning, Beloved Community of God.
A couple months ago, I confessed to you that I don’t really understand or know how to love in this world. Over the time that has passed since, I admit I have not learned much, despite ample opportunities. In fact, oftentimes I do not even know how to be in this world.
And so I am grateful for today’s gospel, which is a story rife with hope and promise and specific instructions for how to be love. It is one we all know really well, I’m sure. We have heard it a thousand times at least, and so its lessons may seem obvious. But it is one, I think, we can never hear enough.
In this story Jesus is asked by a legal expert -- a theologian -- “what do I have to do to gain eternal life?” Jesus returns the question, asking “what does the Law say?” and the expert recites what we know as the Greatest Commandment: to Love God with your entire being, and Love your neighbor as yourself. Jesus affirms his answer and encourages him to go do it.
But then, in a very legal move, the expert asks a second question: “Who, precisely, is my neighbor?” So Jesus tells a story.