What Jesus Did! 'Trying to Justify Ourselves' — Luke 10:29

Thursday, July 9, 2015

But the man wanted to show that the way he was living was right. So he said to Jesus, "But who are these other people I must love?"
— Luke 10:29
Illustration of Luke 10:29 — But the man wanted to show that the way he was living was right. So he said to Jesus, "But who are these other people I must love?"

Key Thought

So often when the conviction of God's word strikes our hearts, we try to justify ourselves rather than simply throwing ourselves on the mercy of God and changing our hearts and lives. If the expert who had come to test Jesus had honest motives, Jesus' question, affirmation, and reply would have been enough. But, the expert wanted to look righteous more than he wanted to be righteous. How many times does this pattern of behavior reflect you? Let's realize that we cannot justify ourselves, but can find our righteousness only in God's grace given to us in Jesus Christ. Then let's go out and seek to live his life in the world as we are supplied by the power of his Holy Spirit!

Today's Prayer

God, my heavenly Father, forgive me for trying to make myself look righteous when that gift comes only from you. Forgive me for my religious posturing that has kept me from opening my heart up completely to your grace and from living my life in honor of that grace. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

Then a teacher of the law stood up. He was trying to test Jesus. He said, "Teacher, what must I do to get life forever?" Jesus said to him, "What is written in the law? What do you understand from it?" The man answered, "'You must love the Lord your God. You must love him with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.' Also, 'You must love other people the same as you love yourself.' " Jesus said to him, "Your answer is right. Do this and you will have life forever." But the man wanted to show that the way he was living was right. So he said to Jesus, "But who are these other people I must love?" To answer this question, Jesus said, "A man was going down the road from Jerusalem to Jericho. Some robbers surrounded him. They tore off his clothes and beat him. Then the robbers left the man lying there on the ground. He was almost dead. It happened that a Jewish priest was going down that road. When the priest saw the man, he did not stop to help him; he walked away. Next, a Levite came near. The Levite saw the hurt man, but he went around him. He would not stop to help him either; he just walked away. Then a Samaritan man traveled down that road. He came to the place where the hurt man was lying. The Samaritan saw the man. He felt very sorry for the hurt man. The Samaritan went to him and poured olive oil and wine on his wounds. Then he covered the man's wounds with cloth. The Samaritan had a donkey. He put the hurt man on his donkey, and he took him to an inn. At the inn, the Samaritan cared for him. The next day, the Samaritan brought out two silver coins and gave them to the man that worked at the inn. The Samaritan said, 'Take care of this hurt man. If you spend more money on him, I will pay it back to you when I come again.'" Then Jesus said, "Which one of these three men (the priest, the Levite, or the Samaritan) do you think showed love to the man that was hurt by the robbers?" The teacher of the law answered, "The one that helped him."Jesus said to him, "Then you go and do the same {for other people}!"

Luke 10:25-37

Related Scripture Readings

God makes people right through their faith in Jesus Christ. God does this for all people that believe in Christ. All people are the same. All people have sinned and are not good enough for God's glory. People are made right with God by his grace (kindness). This is a free gift. People are made right with God by being made free from sin through Jesus Christ. God gave Jesus as a way to forgive people's sins through faith. God forgives by the blood (death) of Jesus. God gave Jesus to show that he always does what is right and fair. God was right in the past when he was patient and did not punish people for their sins. And God gave Jesus to show today that God does what is right. God did this so that he could judge rightly and also make right any person that has faith in Jesus. So do we have a reason to boast about ourselves? No! And why not? It is the way of faith that stops all boasting, not the way of following the law.

Romans 3:22-27

So now people that are in Christ Jesus are not judged guilty. Why? Because in Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit that brings life made you free. It made you free from the law that brings sin and death. The law was without power because the law was made weak by our sinful selves. But God did what the law could not do. God sent his own Son to earth with the same human life that other people use for sin. God sent his Son to be an offering to pay for sin. So God used a human life to condemn (destroy) sin. God did this so that we could be right like the law said we must be. Now we don't live following our sinful selves. We live following the Spirit.

Romans 8:1-4

When a person is in Christ Jesus, it is not important if he is circumcised or not. The important thing is faith—the kind of faith that works through love.

Galatians 5:6

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.