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Poem: The Good Samaritan

Updated on February 23, 2013
The Good Samaritan (after Delacroix), by Vincent Van Gogh
The Good Samaritan (after Delacroix), by Vincent Van Gogh
The Gospel of Luke (Life Lessons)
The Gospel of Luke (Life Lessons)
This is a simple Bible study, useful for teaching children in Sunday School class. For beginners in the Chritian faith.

Luke 10: 25-37

And behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tested Him, saying 'Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?'

He said to him, 'What is written in the law? How do you read it?'

And the lawyer replied, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and you shall love your neighbour as yourself.'

And He said to him, 'You have answered rightly. Do this, and you will live.'

But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus, 'And who is my neighbour?'

And Jesus answering said, 'A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, who stripped him of his garments, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.

'And by chance there came down a certain priest that way; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.

'And likewise a Levite, when he came to the place, he looked at him, and passed by on the other side.

'But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was; and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,

'And he went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.

'And in the morning when he departed, he took out two denarii, and gave them to the inn-keeper, and said to him, "Take care of him; and if you spend more, when I come again, I will repay you."

'Which now of these three, do you think, was a neighbour to him who fell among the thieves?"

And the lawyer replied, He who showed mercy on him. Then Jesus said to him, 'Go, and do likewise.'

from the KJV (with slight modifications in the language)



The poem below is based on just a couple of points taken from the account in Luke 10:25-37. The thought of 'Who is my neighbour?' and, more elaborately, the thought of 'the oil and the wine'.

The poem was written in 2006. And put up on It was appreciated by the viewers there, despite the fact that none of them were born-again and a few were nominal Christians. I thought I should put up the poem here on HubPages.

The passage in Luke 10:25-37 has great depth and meaning, and I could add a commentary on it, but I don't want the focus to shift to the commentary at the cost of the poem. After all, the idea is that viewers on HubPages and friends on Facebook should read the poem and try to appreciate its meaning. Our Lord Jesus Christ is the Good Samaritan, and He pours in the oil and the wine. Wine on a wound stings; it speaks of the truth. Oil soothes; it speaks of the Holy Spirit. (Of course, wine can have other meanings too. It speaks of the gospel in John 2:1-11)

Anyway, without further ado, I direct your attention to the poem below. May God be praised, and our Lord exalted on high for His tender lovingkindness and His amazing grace!


The Good Samaritan

‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’
But who is my neighbour? Is he the man next door?
Is he my flesh-and-blood, my kith-and-kin?
My fellow Jew? I do not know;
My world is so narrow
And limited. How can the Lord imply
My neighbour is my enemy?

And what does this story mean?
Why did the priest and Levite ignore a brother Jew
Stripped, unconscious, bleeding, beaten blue?
Did they not have a heart? Should compassion
Be found in a Samaritan?

There is so much more to this than I can see.
The message clearly must be:
The Samaritan had the oil and the wine.
Wine that stings like truth and still revives;
Poured on wounds, it cleans and purifies.
Oil soothes the pain and quickens healing;
God’s gospel brings in joyous feeling,
Gladdens the heart and makes the face to shine.
The Samaritan had the oil and the wine.

The Levite and priest, despite their toil
And service in the temple, lacked the oil
[Supply of Spirit] and the wine that cheers
Hearts weighed down with worries and with fears.
Bereft of soothing oil, refreshing wine,
What use is arid service without love divine?

Having borne the heavy mill and crushing press,
Emptied of self and pride and selfishness,
The Samaritan knelt down by the victim’s side,
[True symbol of Him crucified]
Pouring on the oil and the wine.
Binding the wounds, he brought him to an inn
[A church that cares for saints wounded by sin];
And taking out two denarii
Assured the manager of full supply
Of love and grace and comfort of the Spirit
Which all the rescued of the Lord inherit.

© Tom Prato/Roland Oliver


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    • tlpoague profile image


      9 years ago from USA

      What wonderful and powerful poems! Thanks for sharing them!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      "But who is my neighbour ? Is he the man next


      Is he my flesh - and- blood , my kith - and - kin?"

      Great beginning to a powerful poem!

    • profile image

      Elizabeth Marks 

      9 years ago

      Delightful poem. May we all be filled with the "supply of the Spirit" to share God's love and grace with those around us.

    • profile image

      Teresa Spingola 

      9 years ago

      What a wonderful poem!

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 

      9 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      Mr. P.

      So nicely done. I'm sure the hubbers will appreciate it as much as the poem hunters. Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      very good, blessings

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Wonderful poem, Roland. Very illustrative and helpful. Thanks and much love in Christ.

      "Emptied of self and pride and selfishness,

      The Samaritan knelt down by the victim’s side,

      [True symbol of Him crucified]"

      Truth profound!


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