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Second Mile

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GOING THE SECOND MILE 

Scripture: Matthew 5:38–42; Luke 6:27–36, 9:51–56, 10:25–37

Memory verse: Matthew 7:12
"So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."

Lead—In

(Bring a map of Palestine from the time period Jesus was on earth. This map can be found in the back of many Bibles.)

Hearing God's Word

Our scripture tells us that Jesus was in the mountains near Capernaum. He was there all night praying. (Point out Capernaum on the map of Palestine.) The next morning He called His disciples together. They all came down the mountain into a large, open area where Jesus talked to His disciples and to a crowd of people who had come from as far away as Jerusalem. (Show the class Jerusalem on the map.) Jesus turned to His disciples and this is part of what He said to them. (Read Luke 6:27–36.)

Ask: “What is an enemy?” (Allow discussion.)

An enemy is anyone who hates you or plans to harm you. He is definitely unfriendly toward you.

Ask: “How do you feel about loving someone who hates you and wants the worst for you? How do you feel about doing something good for someone who hates you? (Allow discussion for each question.)

Ask: “If someone would shout bad words at you, how would you respond? What would you want to do to that person? How would you feel about praying for him?” (Allow discussion.)

Ask: “If someone came up to you, hit you, and then ran, what would you do? How would you feel if he did it again?” (Allow students to respond.)

How to Treat Your Enemies

Jesus answered these questions for His disciples. He said not to worry if someone takes something from you. He wants us to give to everyone who needs help, even if they don’t like us or they treat us unkindly.

If you are not sure how to react when someone hurts you, just treat that person the way you would want to be treated. Do not treat him the way you think he deserves to be treated. (Recite the memory verse together and explain that this Scripture verse is often referred to as the Golden Rule.)

Jesus said it is nothing special to love someone who loves you. Even people who are not Christians do that. If you do good only to those who do good to you, what is so wonderful about that? Even sinners can do that much.

Ask: “How should a child of God act that sets him apart from a sinner?” (Allow responses.)

A Christian should act as his Heavenly Father does. God is kind to those who are unthankful. He is forgiving to the selfish and wicked. Jesus wants us, His disciples, to be forgiving toward others, just as God is. If a child of God is willing to do things for others with no thought of getting something in return, and to treat others like he himself wants to be treated, he is following Jesus’ example. Jesus’ love will help him be kind to others.

The Samaritans Reject the Disciples

One day Jesus went down near the border of Galilee and Samaria on His way to Jerusalem. He sent some of His disciples ahead to a village in Samaria to prepare a place for them to rest. (Show this location on the map.) However, the people of that village did not want Jesus and his disciples to stay there. (Read Luke 9:51–56.)

The people of Samaria, called Samaritans, did not like Jews. Samaritans and Jews had been enemies for a long time. Jews despised Samaritans and would not even speak to them. This is the reason the Samaritans did not want to let Jesus and His disciples stay in their village overnight.

Ask: “Why is it wrong to ignore or be rude to people because they are from a different country or have a different colour of skin than you?” (Allow discussion. Make it clear that God loves all people without prejudice.)

James and John became very angry when they heard that the people of Samaria did not welcome them. They even asked Jesus if they could order fire down from heaven to burn up the Samaritans in that village!

Ask: “How did Jesus respond to their request?” (Allow responses.)

Jesus rebuked the disciples for even thinking such a thing. He then took His disciples to another village.

The Good Samaritan

When Jesus reached Jerusalem, He began to teach. He said we should love others just as we love ourselves. A lawyer in the group listening to Jesus asked exactly whom he was supposed to love. Jesus answered by telling him this story:

A Jewish man was on a trip from Jerusalem to Jericho. (Show this route on the map.) On the way he was attacked by thieves. They stole his clothes, took all his money, and beat him. Then they ran off and left him lying beside the road to die.

Soon a Jewish priest came by. When he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and kept going on his way.

Next a man who worked in the temple came by. He too crossed to the other side of the road and left the poor man lying there.

Later a man from Samaria came along. When he saw the wounded man, he felt sorry for him. The Samaritan knelt, soothed the man’s painful wounds with medicine, and bandaged them. Then the Samaritan put the man on his donkey and walked beside him until they came to an inn. There he took care of the wounded man all night.

The next morning the Samaritan gave 2 days’ pay to the innkeeper and asked him to care for the injured man. He also promised if it cost more than the 2 days’ wages to properly care for the man, he would pay the rest on his way back through town.

Ask: “What was unusual about this story Jesus told? Why do you think Jesus, a Jewish man, telling a story to a Jewish crowd, would use a Samaritan as the hero of His story?

What principle was Jesus trying to teach?” (Allow the students to share their ideas about the questions.)

Jesus himself had just been mistreated by the Samaritans. He had been rejected by them when he wanted to stay in their village. Yet Jesus did them no harm. His disciples, James and John, wanted to destroy the Samaritans in the village because they were unkind; but Jesus showed love instead. By using a Samaritan man as the hero of His story, Jesus showed that He did not hate the Samaritans, even though they had been unkind to Him. The story showed a Samaritan man, hated and despised by Jews, being kind to a Jewish man who needed help. The Samaritan treated the man the way he would like to be treated. He acted according to the word of our memory verse.

The Samaritan laid aside prejudice toward a group of people in order to help an individual. He treated the wounded man the way he himself would want to be treated. Although it took special effort, he was willing to take on an extra “load” for the good of someone else.

Going the Second Mile

Sometimes we may not want to treat others the way Jesus tells us to. However, a true disciple of Jesus will do what God wants over what he wants for himself. That is one of the costs of being a disciple, as we learned in last week’s study.

A Christian should also be willing to do more than his share of the work. He should not worry about what is fair. He should only be concerned about how he can do kindness to someone else. That is called “going the second mile” for someone. (Ask a student to read Matthew 5:38–42.)

It is not always easy to treat others kindly. When someone ignores us or laughs at us, our first reaction may be to get even. Jesus taught us by His Word and His example that we should not seek revenge. We should treat others as we would like to be treated—with kindness and respect.

When you are tempted to act unkindly toward someone, remember what Jesus taught. What better way is there to measure how much you should help another person than by using the Golden Rule? Treat another person the way you would like to be treated.

Accepting God’s Word

Jesus did not just say, “Be kind to your enemies”—He lived it. When it was time for Him to give His life for our salvation, soldiers beat Him, spit on Him, thrust thorns into His head, and crucified Him. We probably will never experience such great pain. Did Jesus harm any of those people? Did Jesus say unkind things or use His power to hurt them? No. He did not seek revenge.

The kind of love Jesus has is too wonderful for us to fully understand. Jesus loved every person so much He was willing to take the pain no matter the cost. Because of His love, if we believe He died for our sins and ask His forgiveness, our sins are removed. Pray with each who wants to receive Jesus as their Saviour. Remind them that Jesus was the greatest example of loving others. Encourage them to share about their decision for Jesus with someone this week.

Somali Prayer 

​Lord God Almighty, sovereign God of the universe, the maker of heaven and earth, look favourably upon the Somali people. They are beautiful people, very intelligent and have great potential for making a contribution to the world community.

Their homeland, the country of Somalia, is engulfed in civil strife. Brothers are fighting brothers, Muslims are killing fellow Muslims, precious lives - young and old, men and women, boys and girls - are being snatched from a normal way of life to one of war and conflict. They need help. They need to make peace.

Only the Somalis can solve the problems that exist between their clans, but they need Your super-natural intervention. Come, Lord Jesus. Open their understanding to Your love and gracious provision of a new birth, a transformed life that is free of sin and one who loves fellow human beings, promotes peace rather than strife and reconciliation as opposed to division.

May the Somali recognize that in bowing to the authority of Jesus Christ, surrendering to his control, they can learn to submit to one another. May their prayer be like the Psalmist David in Psalm 67:1: "May God be gracious to us and make his face to shine upon us."

So be it, Lord. Amen and Amen!

Remember: GOING THE SECOND MILE

Memory verse: Matthew 7:12
"So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."

1. The second mile is doing more than expected.
2. It is responding to a person's need regardless of who they are.
3. I want to treat others the way I would like them to treat me.

Pray for many new converts among  Somali youth.

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Study 16 | Come Holy Spirit/Born Again | africaatts.org/go-teach​ 

 

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