The Gospel Reading for many this past Sunday was the historical illustration of a Samaritan who loved as himself a man whom robbers left half-dead on the road in front of him (Luke 10:25-37; confer Leviticus 19:18). Jesus used the illustration to try to get an expert in the law to realize that he could not earn eternal life by keeping the law, but by the illustration Jesus also helps us, who have been forgiven of our sins and so also received eternal life by grace through faith in Him, know how we should love as ourselves those whom God places on the road in front of us.
The Divinely-inspired beloved physician St. Luke (Colossians 4:14) uses a number of medical terms to report Jesus’s illustration for the lawyer, and, since he first recorded it, the term “Good Samaritan” has come to name numerous care facilities of various types. As politicians debate their plans for the future, we might think that our premiums or tax dollars completely care for our or others’ health today, but there is still one thing that for some time has required voluntary donations.
Federal law requires that blood products used in healthcare be donated voluntarily. Yet, forgiven Christians do not need a secular law in order for them to love as themselves their neighbors. And, as we have progressed from oil and wine as treatment, animals as transport, and innkeepers as caregivers, so we can and should love by giving blood.
Eligible “good Samaritans” can love as themselves their neighbors by giving blood today at the 24th Quarterly Kilgore Community Blood-drive cosponsored by the Kilgore Rotary Club and our congregation. The Blood Center of East Texas is receiving donations between 8 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. at 713 Florey Street in Kilgore. If you are not eligible or cannot donate, please find someone who is or can and will. For more information, visit www.pilgrimlc.org/blooddrive or call 903-984-4333. Walk-ins are welcome! (The next drive will be October 6.)
May God forgive our failures to love our neighbors as ourselves and bless our efforts to so love them!
The Rev. Dr. Jayson S. Galler is Pastor of Pilgrim Lutheran Church in Kilgore. You can reach him through the congregation’s website: www.pilgrimlc.org.