- Tullian Tchividjian - http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tullian -

Who Is The Good Samaritan?

Posted By Tullian Tchividjian On June 24, 2013 @ 4:17 pm In Uncategorized | 27 Comments

[1]The parable of the Good Samaritan may be the most well-known and the most misunderstood parable Jesus ever told:

For every good story in the Bible there’s a bad children’s song. This is the one I remember for the Good Samaritan:

The man who stopped to help, right when he saw the need; he was such a good, good neighbor, a good example for me.

On the surface, this little ditty may seem harmless. The problem, however, is that Jesus wants us to identify with every person in the parable except the good Samaritan. He reserves that role for himself.

Read the rest here [2].

27 Comments (Open | Close)

27 Comments To "Who Is The Good Samaritan?"

#1 Comment By anonymous On June 25, 2013 @ 7:54 am

It is curious the hostility to the Lord’s word about examples. The Lord says, on this side of glory, we need to see examples – good and bad, imitate them (or not), and practice them (or not). Yet.. we know.. we have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer we who live, but Christ lives in us; and the life which we now live in the flesh we live by faith in the Son of God, who loved us and gave Himself up for us. Gal 2:20

So teach all that the Lord says because you are confusing people, but the Lord makes things very clear.

Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble 2 Pet 1: 10

I (Jesus) gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you. John 13:15

Be imitators of me (Paul), just as I also am of Christ. 1 Cor 11:1 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, have this attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you; however, let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained. Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us. Phil 3:14-17

solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil. Heb 5:14 & read 1 Cor 10:5-13

let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and the one who is holy, still keep himself holy Rev 22:11b

#2 Comment By Tullian Tchividjian On June 25, 2013 @ 8:25 am


Read the whole post. I’m not railing against the beauty and benefit of having good examples. But the Good Samaritan is not answering a sanctification question. It’s answering a justification question. The context makes that clear. I explain in the post. Check it out.


#3 Comment By the Old Adam On June 25, 2013 @ 8:51 am

Oh no. It’s really all about us (again).


#4 Comment By anonymous On June 25, 2013 @ 9:15 am

with all due respect – I do think you rail against the benefit of having good examples.

I love God’s very own example:

“Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner. For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself is doing; and the Father will show Him greater works than these, so that you will marvel. John 5: 19-20

very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because people do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned. “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.” John 16: 7-15 ;

promises that his “help” is not simply a one time gift—rather, it’s a gift that will forever cover “the charges” we incur. Yes, Jesus and Jesus alone is the Good Samaritan”

Also,the “help” He brings is our salvation, our deliverance – His very own righteousness granted to His own;, unearned, unmerited AND His very own power to help us practice living out that righteousness until the day of redemption.

#5 Comment By Ryan On June 25, 2013 @ 9:42 am


It seems as though you are really trying so split hairs for no reason. This article isn’t railing against role models, it is simply pointing out a common misconception about the parable. It doesn’t appear that anybody is arguing we shouldn’t strive to be like Christ, or that the Spirit is continually pushing and refining us to be more Christ-like. Like you have pointed out Christ is our ultimate example and who we should strive to emulate. If you take a second to really think about it, without the understanding that this article points out; that Christ is the good Samaritan, then your arguement is superficial and Jesus’ parable is powerless as we are simply left with the story of a good human being who did the right thing. We are not commanded to live our lives like other good people… we are commanded to strive to live like Christ. That is what this article does. It points out the Good Samaritan is Christ and therefore with the understanding that the Bible calls us to be like Christ, this parable carries true weight. This article pre-supposes that as a Christian you understand Christ is who we are striving to emulate and therefore makes the parable extremely consequential as we not only see what Christ would do and does for us, but we are able to see the juxtaposition of ourselves in our sin and brokenness and Christ in his perfection and love.

Thank you Mr. Tchividjian for a very insightful article.

#6 Comment By anonymous On June 25, 2013 @ 10:18 am

the comments comes from the pattern of not making disciples, even this article; the lack of spurring on to growth through the knowledge of the truth. stopping short of the Lord’s full word. gotta go for today.

#7 Comment By the Old Adam On June 25, 2013 @ 10:31 am

That’s it!

Jesus was our good example!

We don’t need a Savior…we just need more “good examples”. Then we will finally get it and start to live as we ought!

God could have save a lot of heartache and suffering and death, if only He’s sent down more “good examples”.

#8 Comment By jeremiah On June 25, 2013 @ 4:33 pm

Jesus is our savior and our teacher/example, no need to pick apart what the scripture leave in tact.
We can not spin a teaching of Christ to uphold our view of things.

Jesus’ conclusion of ‘go and do like wise’ come in immediate response to the statement of ‘the one who showed mercy’, why is this not brought out?

Should we look in Luke 6 and reconstruct that passage as well- Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.?

#9 Comment By the Old Adam On June 25, 2013 @ 6:14 pm

As far as Jesus being “our example”…He has pretty much been a failure. Don’t you think?

I don’t know anyone who is even close to behaving how he did. Just look at the Sermon on the Mount. Or the example he gave us when he washed the disciple’s feet.

I don’t see any stampede by Christians heading out of the church doors on Sunday to run and serve the neighbor. Usually it’s brunch and then head home to watch the ballgames (or whatever).

#10 Comment By Ben On June 26, 2013 @ 11:14 am

In regards to what the Old Adam said: That is because there are very few Christians who really do follow Christ’s example. They are rare and hard to find in this world. But they do exist. They are not your mainstream Christian because they follow what the bible actually says instead of what mainstream Christianity has assumed.

#11 Comment By the Old Adam On June 26, 2013 @ 7:09 pm


I never met one Christian who can even get past the 1st Commandment…let alone live the way Jesus showed us how to live.

#12 Comment By Jeremiah On June 27, 2013 @ 1:21 am

Old Adam, that is unfortunate.

For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel.

#13 Comment By the Old Adam On June 27, 2013 @ 10:55 am

What is unfortunate?

It is the plain, hard truth.

“No one does good, no not one”

“No one seeks for God”

None are so blind as those who will not see.

“They claim to see and yet are blind”

#14 Comment By jeremiah On June 27, 2013 @ 11:17 am

Old Adam, that is talking about the unregenerate.
Jesus is the great physician and he comes for the sick and does not leave them that way. If Christ left the sick ones still laden in their sickness, he would not be a great physician he would be a fraud, a fake doctor. This is not the case though and therefore we are full of hope and not despairing in our old nature of death.

#15 Comment By John Dunn On June 27, 2013 @ 4:43 pm

The old adam (our old self) has been put to death in Christ’s death. In His resurrection we have been given new life from heaven . . . His resurrection life *indweling* us. By His Spirit.

The Good Samaritan picks us out of the gutter of death and gives us, not merely new clothes, but new Life. And this Life is located in the risen Christ alone. It is only when we behold Him and find ourselves in Him do we begin to be like Him from one degree of glory to another (2 Cor 3:18).

For those in Christ, ‘total depravity’ has begun to give way to Life and glory.

#16 Comment By the Old Adam On June 28, 2013 @ 12:43 am

Oh brother.

Now we have to hear how good some people are, now that they are Christians?

Give me a break. I know far too many of them. And I know myself.

#17 Comment By the Old Adam On June 28, 2013 @ 12:44 am

Take a peek at Romans 7, if you refuse to take an honest look at yourself in the mirror.

Was Paul unregenerate when he wrote that chapter?


#18 Comment By anonymous On June 28, 2013 @ 7:46 am

old adam – never quite sure your objective, but hopefully it is to encourage onward the saints, in your own way..
did read romans 7, gotta read Romans 6 for the ‘therefore’, …

therefore my brethren, you also were made to die to the Law through the body of Christ,……so that you might be joined to another, to Him who was raised from the dead….

…in order that we might bear fruit for God. Rom 7:4

abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. John 15:4-5

the gospel is constantly bearing fruit- bearing fruit in every good work; bearing fruit in keeping with repentance; holding the seed fast bearing fruit with perseverance. Col 1: 6;10-11; Luke 3:8a ;8:15

#19 Comment By John Dunn On June 28, 2013 @ 9:22 am

Old Adam – only the “Lord who is the Spirit” accomplishes such supernatural transformative work in/through those who abide in the Vine (2 Cor 3:18). This Spirit-sealed marriage union to the resurrected Christ is Life, and power, and righteousness.

Simply being a good church-attending ‘christian’ and having knowledge about the gospel does nothing.

Union to the risen Lamb is indispensable. And the indwelling Spirit of God is the agent of our union to Him and our transformation into His glory.

#20 Comment By Jeremiah On June 28, 2013 @ 9:39 am

Old Adam- please read Rom 7 more carefully

vs.17,18 So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh.

vs.20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.

vs.25b So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.

We are to be transformed by the renewing of our mind, reckoning ourselves as dead to sin and alive to God through Christ.

If Paul or any other believer is only in the flesh, then your case is proven. However this is not the case and your missing the reality the new life.

I am curious Old Adam, what do believe regarding regeneration?

#21 Comment By the Old Adam On June 28, 2013 @ 10:29 pm

God does it all. That is what we believe. And that we “walk by faith and not by sight.”

We are sinners in fact…and saints through faith.

Holiness churches and messages put the onus and focus back onto ourselves. Is that where it ought be?

Our best isn’t good enough, my friends.

But His was, and is.

Relax in Christ! It is really good news that it doesn’t depend on us!

#22 Comment By John Dunn On June 29, 2013 @ 9:57 am

Old Adam – is that really the portrait of the saints’ new life in Christ that the NT describes? Just chillaxing in our depravity, letting go and let God? You seem keen to affirm man’s inability and “not good enough” status. And that status is 100% true concerning our justification.

But concerning sanctification, you ignore or radically downplay the Holy Spirit’s **new** life and power that was poured out upon the New Covenant saints at Pentecost . . . to equip, teach, purify, empower, send, motivate, comfort, and sanctify them. There is an experiential, supernatural power of the Spirit at work within the saints, transforming them from the inside out, that you seem loath to acknowledge or even speak of.

Acts 1:8 – But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you . . .

#23 Comment By the Old Adam On June 29, 2013 @ 10:03 am

“He must increase. I must decrease.”

Which one am I advocating? You?

Sure He changes us. The Christian life of faith is forgetting ourselves. And living outward…unselfconsciously.

So many in the church WON’T let you forget about yourself because they are constantly harping on what you should, ought, or must be doing to be a “real Christian”.

Give me a break.

#24 Comment By jeremiah On July 1, 2013 @ 12:07 pm

Old Adam, isn’t one of the main points of baptism is to walk in freedom?
If you and I are new creations and the Holy spirit is alive and at work in us, then there must be a difference between the old and the new.
This give me delight because it is good who is at work in His children, if I was a bastard then I would be bemoaning my condition but son-ship is real!

#25 Comment By the Old Adam On July 1, 2013 @ 12:41 pm

Yes. Freedom the self-focused/religious ascendancy project…and freedom to live, not thinking of yourself and how to please God…but free to react to the needs that you find around you.

God isn’t looking for those who are trying to impress Him…but those who rest in Him (and His work), so now they can live outwardly…for ‘the other’.

And we so often fail miserably there, as well.

#26 Comment By Jay Vanderton On July 6, 2013 @ 3:37 pm

Hey Old Adam, you seem to be really upset about something? I have read a few of your posts and you have the personality of either an attack dog or a stopped up toilet, I cant decide which! either way I would assume by your posts that you are a Luthern. Which would explain the close proximity of your nose to TT’s backside.


#27 Comment By Don Chiechi On July 8, 2013 @ 11:21 am

Indeed, Jay, it is right to believe whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did. And be sure, if we answer the Lord (by word and/or action, “We can,” there is only one response from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness: “You will drink the cup I drink and be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with.”

But let us also recall, to sit at his right or left is not for him to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared. As such, let us not be overrighteous, neither be overwise– why destroy ourselves? Neither let us be overwicked, and nor be a fool– why die before our time? For is it not good to grasp the one and not let go of the other?

Amen, amen, whoever fears God will avoid all extremes, and in regard to our brother, S.M. (for whom Christ died), let us know and understand that the Lord is able to make him stand, as he is to all who hold unswervingly to the hope they profess, for he who promised is faithful.

Article printed from Tullian Tchividjian: http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tullian

URL to article: http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tullian/2013/06/24/who-is-the-good-samaritan/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tullian/files/2013/06/Dying-Gaul.jpg

[2] here: http://liberatenet.org/2013/06/24/who-is-the-good-samaritan/