Good Guys and Bad Guys


Aren’t we such good guys when we tell the story of the Good Samaritan? We love to point out the hypocrisy of the clergy in this parable and reflect on how we show compassion for people.

Yet, this past Saturday, here was a man around 40 years old.  He was ‘passed out’ and bleeding profusely from his nose and head and lying in the street.  Who knows if he was severely injured, drunk or on drugs or a combination of all?

The point is this: no one wants to stop and help these bums, drunks or and druggies.

We look down on this ‘trash’ as the bad guys, while we strut around as the good guys.  After all, we aren’t down in the street like some stray dog as a mark of road kill.

It ends up that I knew this man.  He is a neighbor of mine who suffers from many addictions.  Addictions that are harmful to him and have brought him tons of downfalls.

Yet, do you have an addiction to something? Perhaps it is food, or a smart phone or autos or fishing or football or bowling or some hobby or any other item that consumes your greatest time and energy to excess.

Perhaps the Clergy in the Good Samaritan didn’t want to ENABLE him. This is the catch phrase of the day—the hash tag.

Summing this up.  Enabling people really has nothing to do with it.  That’s no why we don’t help in these critical and pathetic situations.  We fail to act because we don’t want to.  We don’t want to be involved.  We are afraid and we don’t want to be go out of our busy schedules, much less to invite them in our homes.

Yet, I say that man lying out in the street was JESUS. And at that point in time, indeed, he is the least of them.  And there are millions of others out there and as Christians, the body is to pick up that man named Jesus who lies in the streets.

How can the rest of the body function if the head (Jesus) is lying in the road half-dead and we refuse to help or assist?

Again, it comes down to the good guys and the bad guys and for most of the time, we are in fact—THE BAD GUYS

18 thoughts on “Good Guys and Bad Guys

  1. Well said brother. We still love our us vs them paradigms.

    I actually think this parable has a different meaning…it’s not actually about the lack of compassion on those who passed by…but about specifically about the compassion shown by the Samaritan, the hated enemy himself. The point of the story is this – how do you react when you find out that your enemy, the one you hate, loves you?

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Insofar as the point of the parable… John is correct.

      AT THE SAME TIME… the lesser point still holds, and in fact adds punch to the main point. The priest and levite are in contempt of God as they think they must not soil themselves with this polluted mess.

      And that too is a different point from the one of ENABLING, but the contempt is still there to be had. These stories have a definite thrust to them, and often the original context reveals it all more clearly. But they are also multidimensional, and Tom’s application does not rob the point at all. Fact is, contempt is still at root here. And even when it is a dreaded Samaritan, it turns out we were having contempt for both the buy broke down on the side of the road AND the guy who stops to help him.

      Now… I gotta say, I identify with that at personal levels here in Lubbock. I was out there taking care of the broken and needy, bandaging the wounds and helping the weak walk etc (Other Scriptures come to mind at this point) but then I find my comrades and colleagues criticizing this work in themselves and in me when they read the latest Christian best seller about how Toxic our Charity has become or how our help might be hurting the needy etc… Not a word of which comes from Jesus. And the fact that I refuse to bend the knee to this garbage has both me and my street friends in contempt, not unlike a Samaritan (at some levels) and the man left for dead.

      Contempt of God is at the root of many kinds of evil.

      Good post Tom. Even if you majored in the minors, you illuminate a lot that we otherwise do not see.

      Agent X
      Fat Beggars School of Prophets
      Lubbock, Texas (USA)

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Agent X, right on target. The parable Jesus told started with this. “And a religious leader stood up and put Jesus to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”

        Testing Jesus is the ultimate contempt.

        May God be with us all. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.

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      2. Amen brother X. Wasn’t trying to diminish Tom’s point, but add to it… but probably did not present it as such. No doubt….the contempt and lack of true godliness is evident and completely there in the story. I would say it’s absolutely part of the truth of the story.

        I think it was a good post, and wanted to comment. Thanks for the good work Tom, always!

        Liked by 3 people

      3. John,

        If I know Tom, his is more gratified right now that he has you and I discussing this than with the content of his original post – except for the fact that he has this friend being shunned by the do gooders. Tom wants us to sharpen up each other and his work. I detect no insult. But I definitely think the iron is sharpening.

        As for the bleeding friend. A friend left bleeding in the street… my heart is heavy for that. I am so sad WE aren’t doing better. But I know, because Tom has shared enough with me over time, that despite all the squabbles and pain of people being in close proximity in his little apartment, that Tom has let God into his little domicile.

        Ohhhh… How I wish I could be there just now! To pray with, to sing with, to enjoy the presence of God in that tiny space.

        It is the HOUSE of GOD today! And I hope against hope that with all the people living in there and rubbing elbows and stepping on each others toes and dealing with addiction and everything else, that they keep pushing themselves to LOVE God and each other every second they can possibly stand it. Like working out in the gym, the people in “Tom’s” place today, are making themselves fit for the Kingdom!

        Tom doesn’t think he is a prophet. And maybe not. But if God can speak from Baalam’s Ass, he can speak through Tom in both word and deed. And Tom took in a man bleeding in the streets. Tom! Not a church of 2000 white, middle class members driving Lexus, Cadillac, Lincoln, and Chevy. No. Tom! Tom in his little apartment with a manager who might snoop around, is taking care of a Jesus who is known for flipping tables when he comes into the house!

        Ohhhhh… The risk of it all! and FAITH INVOLVES RISK!

        And so there is no room at the inn, but there is at Tom’s place. There is not enough money at the church, but Tom is squeezing blood out of stones! There is not enough peace and quiet, but TOM is laying his own life down to serve his friend!

        And it is easy to have contempt for this.

        So easy, in fact, that most of the Christian Best-seller reading public doesn’t even know, and likely never will know the day of Tom’s visitation – AND IF THEY DID… they would hold it in contempt and say that is a waste of resources, poor stewardship, that it is ENABLING… and all that. They have been invited to the party, but they said, I bought a piece of land, I need to check it out, please count me excused… I bought an ox, and I need to check it out, please excuse me too…. and Oh,,, yeah… I am doing my hair that night, um… wait… Who is Tom? Oh, anyway, I am having a root canal with no pain med that day, so count me out.

        Contempt.

        Yeah… Please pray for those in TOM’s apartment (AKA the HOUSE of GOD) today. They need it. Because to be in the presence of His GLORY is a heavy lift! Worth it, for those who endure to the end, but heavy indeed.

        God bless you Tom!

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I feel like I am running around being your cheerleader today Tom. I see where 3 other guys reblogged your post, and I visited there sites with prayer requests and appeal to keep reblogging and to link this up on face book all over the place. I hope I am pointing the blog-o-sphere to you and, more importantly, to JESUS through you. I hope others will join in and give help with the lifting.

    God bless you…

    X

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  3. Hi Tom, I really enjoyed this post. It has a lot of truth to it, though seeing someone drag Billy Graham in as the bad guy who would walk on by kind of hurt. However, as good as Billy Graham’s reputation is, he probably had security who wouldn’t let him stop to help, personally. I think sometimes people don’t get involved because, as you say, they are afraid…the unknown is a fearful thing to most people. I really enjoy when someone looks at the parables from another direction than is frequently taught. It is like the parable of the prodigal. At any one time in life, we have almost all held the roles of the prodigal, the older brother and the father (parental role). Yet, when we hear about the Prodigal son it is always with the focus on the wrong doing and selfishness of the younger son. No one really takes time to think about the elder brother’s position and thoughts, his wrong doing…wrong thinking. All in all, both the Good Samaritan and the Prodigal are about selfishness and selflessness. They are about unexpected love, undeserved love…grace. I am really sorry that your friend has such a problem. I know it is a big thing…I have people around me who are having or have had the same problem. I agree that each of us has our own addictions, things that we focus on too much and spend too much time doing which can inhibit our spiritual growth. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

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