“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
(Galatians 3:28, NKJV)
In Acts 8 we see the beginnings of what Jesus told his disciples to do in Acts 1:8. Up to this point, the apostles and the new believers had only preached in Jerusalem, but had not reached out to Judea, Samaria and to the ends of the earth. What was the problem? We may get a clue from Isaiah 42:6, Luke 9:55-56; 10:29-37 and John 4.
The Jews believed that they were God’s chosen people and everyone else wasn’t. They had totally forgot what God had told them to do with their intimacy:
“I, the Lord, have called You in righteousness, And will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, As a light to the Gentiles,”
(Isaiah 42:6, NKJV)
They became superior rather than inclusive. Instead of showing lost people (Gentiles) a lighted path to the God who loved them, they turned them away. The Jewish believers were no different, believing that only Jews and those who became Jews, could be saved.
Persecution pushed Christians like Philip away from Jerusalem to preach the gospel in Judea and Samaria. Peter came to see the spiritual awakening there with John — the same John that wanted, along with his brother James, to call fire down from heaven to destroy the Samaritans. Jesus gave them a sharp rebuke in Luke 9.
“You do not know what manner of spirit you are of. For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.”
(Luke 9:55–56, NKJV)
Ever feel like you want to call fire down from heaven on people? John got to see that Jesus always knows best.
In Luke 10, Jesus tells the familiar story of the “good” Samaritan. These people were considered second class citizens, and yet, Jesus visited a Samaritan woman and preached in a Samaritan village! (John 4). After the “Good Samaritan” story—where the Samaritan is the hero among a priest and a Levite, the best religion of the day had to offer—Jesus asks, “Who was more like a neighbor?”
A lawyer replied that it was the Samaritan.
“Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.” …be a good neighbor. love one another and remember that there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Share the intimacy of Christ with someone by telling them about the cross, and doing what the cross empowers. Because, in the end, we are all just everyday anybodies.