The Generous Gift of Community | James 2:15-16 | Devotional
James 2:15-16 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?
Bloodied and bruised, he lay by the side of the road. Thugs had done their dirty work, leaving the traveler stripped of his clothes and money, and left for dead. Helpless, the beaten man waited to die.
Two religious leaders traveled the road and saw the poor man’s desperate state, but they had things to do…important meetings and appointments. So they avoided him, passing by on the other side. Finally, a man came along who belonged to a hated race. No one could have blamed him if he didn’t stop. Goodness knows, no one would have stopped if he were the dying man. But something grabbed his heart. He tended to the beaten man’s wounds and took him to a safe place to recover. He paid for all the expenses.
Jesus told the story in response to the question, “Who is my neighbor?” But after telling the story, Jesus turned the question upside down and asked which person in the story “was a neighbor” to the beaten man. That’s the real question, isn’t it? Not “Who is my neighbor?” but “Am I being a neighbor?” Being a neighbor is more than simply giving well wishes.
Father, may we never think our well wishes are an act of obedience. Help us to be those who get things done for you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.