The Parable of the Good Samaritan: Another Portrait of Jesus and the Preaching of the Gospel of Salvation

The Parable of the “Good Samaritan” (Painting by Rembrandt, 1638, public domain)

While not often stated as such, Jesus’s account of the Samaritan man saving the man who had been attacked by thieves is nonetheless correctly identified as one of Jesus’s parables. The account was presented by Jesus as an “earthly story“, but it contains, and was intended to convey, a “heavenly (spiritual) meaning“.  

Remember what Jesus said in John 3:12, “If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you [of] heavenly things?

The Parable of the Good Samaritan is one of 18 “parables”, spoken by Jesus, which are unique to Luke, of a total of about 42-46 parables (depending on how one defines an individual “parable”) that are found in the whole of the first three of the four Gospels in the New Testament (Matthew, Mark, Luke). Jesus’ parables are not necessarily factual accounts, nor do  they have to be factual/historical, because the spiritual lessons are still true and valid regardless.  They are not to be confused with “historical parables” that are found in the Bible, which are all unequivocally true, factual, historical accounts (like the Jonah account in the Old Testament) that, nonetheless, convey spiritual lessons in the same way as Jesus’ parables in the New Testament do.  Moreover, “historical parables” are found in the New Testament accounts, as well as the Old Testament ones.  For example: Paul’s shipwreck, and all 276 “souls” (Acts 27:37) making it safe to the Island of Melita (“Honey”) is a picture of the destruction of the corporate church in the tempest of the Final Tribulation, whereby, all the souls within it, who are destined to be saved, nonetheless, make it safely to Heaven.

However, the reader must also be made aware that Jesus’ “parables” are the ones so designated by general agreement among theologians and Biblical scholars/academics and yes, they are indeed parables.  However, those parables are still only the more “obvious” ones.  The fact is that, according to the Bible, Jesus ONLY spoke to the multitudes in parables, as we read in both Matthew 13:34, “All these things spake Jesus unto the multitude in parables; and without a parable spake he not unto them:” and Mark 4:34 , “But without a parable spake he not unto them: and when they were alone, he expounded all things to his disciples.”  The point being that, when Jesus spoke, then the “plain” earthly meaning was insufficient to understand the spiritual or heavenly meaning by the vast majority of his hearers who were not to be counted among God’s Elect. What Jesus said was effectively given in the form of a riddle, and therefore had a “hidden” meaning. The exposition of the Bible’s parables comes from God Alone, and through His Holy Spirit Alone, and not from the wisdom of men.  And even when Jesus expounds to everyone the meanings of some of His parables as provided to us in the Bible what is the heavenly/spiritual meaning (provided in a seemingly plainly understood way), the non-elect will still not perceive or understand with their hearts.  The proof can be found here: Matthew 13:14, Mark 4:12, and Acts 28:26.

Let’s take a look at the parable of the “Good Samaritan” as it is recorded for us in the Bible (KJV) in Luke 10:25-37:

And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal lifeHe said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt liveBut he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?

And Jesus answering said,

A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, 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 was at the place, came and looked on 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 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 on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.

Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.”

What Does This Parable Really Mean?

The Context and Setting are Critical to the Understanding

The parable of the Good Samaritan begins within the context of a “certain lawyer” who asks Jesus a question, which the Bible identifies as “tempting” Jesus.  That is not a “good” thing for him to have done. And the question was, “Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 

The word “inherit” is translated from the Greek word, κληρονομέω (klēronomeō)G2816 , which does mean “inherit” and is the same as the way it is used by the rich young ruler in Luke 18:18.  But is also means “one who receives by lot, an heir”and would seem to indicated that it is something expected by right of inheritance. Nonetheless we know that there is an inheritance to come for the believers, we read in Romans 8:14-17, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.”

The “certain lawyer” was clearly someone who “knew” the law of Moses and replied to Jesus with this answer “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”  Jesus said to him in response, “Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.” But then the certain lawyer responded thusly,  “willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?”  

Note that the lawyer wanted to know what he must do to “inherit” eternal life.  A couple of points need to be made here.  The lawyer was focused on “works of the law”.  He also mentioned “inherit”, which is strange because an inheritance is not obtained by the will or work of the person who receives it, but rather it is a gift bequeathed by someone else who dies.  So Jesus essentially was telling the lawyer, if you keep the law perfectly, then you will have eternal life.  We know that is impossible for anyone and everyone who is descended from Adam, apart from Jesus.  Jesus tells us in Matthew 5:48Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” (There is more from Matthew chapter 5 below.) But no one can be “perfect” apart from salvation by Grace through Faith by Jesus Christ Alone!

And is not this reminiscent of another man skilled in the law, Paul, who when he was still “Saul”, as Paul recounts in Acts 22:3, said, “I am verily a man [which am] a Jew, born in Tarsus, [a city] in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, [and] taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as ye all are this day.” Saul thought he was doing just fine, and was justified by the keeping of law before God.  God soon showed him that he was wrong.

Moreover, regarding the word “inherit”, 1Corinthians 6:9-11 tells us, “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

But when the lawyer asked “who is my neighbor?“, then Jesus answered with the subsequent presentation of the “Good Samaritan” parable.

Who is The Certain Man? Who are the Thieves? What Else Is Being Told to Us?

1) The Certain Man Who Was Wounded, Robbed and Left Naked and Half Dead

The parable of the Good Samaritan begins in Luke 10:30 where “And Jesus answering said, A certain [man] went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded [him], and departed, leaving [him] half dead.”

From Jerusalem to Jericho

If we look closely at the account, we see that the man is not specifically identified, but he is called only a “certain man” much like the lawyer was described as a “certain lawyer” or the Samaritan was a “certain Samaritan.”  We know also that he was jouneying “down” from Jerusalem to Jericho. Jerusalem is a holy city in the hills of Judea, while Jericho (“the city of palm trees” according to Deuteronomy 34:3) was a cursed city down in the plain along the river Jordan according to Joshua 6:26.

Relatively speaking, Jerusalem (meaning “foundation of Peace”) is located in the highlands of Judah, while Jericho below Jerusalem down in the Jordan valley.  This man’s journey must therefore also be representative of the fall of Adam, in that he went from the city of peace with God to a city that was cursed by God in Joshua 6:26.

Because a parable is an earthly story with a heavenly meaning, we must therefore seek to know who does the certain man who was attacked represent?, who are the thieves?, why was he going from Jerusalem to Jericho?, etc.  This account, in just one sentence is providing us in allegorical types information that is entirely consistent with what the Bible makes clear to us going back to Genesis.  

The Certain Man is Adam (Representing All of Mankind)

The certain man is a “Type” for Adam, and hence all mankind descended from him.  The first reference to “man” in the Bible is in Genesis 1:26,  “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” God gave dominion over creation to the first man, Adam. But due to the devil and his lies, Adam lost his dominion over the earth to the devil, and Adam became naked in his sin, and he was wounded in the process in that he would surely die as a result of that sin.

We have learned that the certain man is robbed by thieves, stripped of his raiment (left naked), was wounded and left “half dead.” Let’s pause a moment to contemplate what transpired within this parable.  In the earthly story, the certain man is going from a holy city “down” to a cursed city, also known as the city of “palm trees”. Regardless of the spritual implications that this might suggest by itself, we do know that the certain man was attacked with the result that he was stripped of his raiment and belongings, was wounded, and left naked and “half dead”.    

  1. “Stripped of His Raiment” Before the Fall of Adam, there was no sin and no need of a covering for Adam’s or Eve’s nakedness.  However, once Adam and Eve sinned against God, their eyes were opened and they saw that they had no covering for their nakedness.  Adam was stripped of his raiment by the devil. Adam was also robbed of his home in Eden and once Adam and Eve were then made aware of that nakedness, they sought to cover their nakedness with their own useless works by creating aprons of sewn fig leaves.   Which, by the way, God made clear to them was unsatisfactory for them to come into His presence, so God clothed them in animal skins…which pointed to the need of a Savior, Jesus Christ, because an animal had to die (Jesus is the Lamb of God), and blood had to be shed. to cover their nakedness (Jesus had to die and by His shed blood we are healed from our sins) and God had to kill the animal (Jesus Atoning Sacrifice) and God had to be the One to clothe them (the believers are clothed in the robes of Jesus Christ’s Righteousness). 
  2. “Was  Wounded”  Just as the certain man was wounded, so too was Adam permanently wounded by the devil when Adam sinned in violating God’s commandment, and thus condemned Adam and all of his seed to eternal death.
  3. “Half Dead”?   Have you ever seen anyone “half dead”?  We are either alive or dead.   So what does “half dead” mean from a spiritual perspective? When Adam sinned against God, he immediately “spiritually” died, yet he remained “physically” alive.  Adam, after the fall, was not only found to be naked in his sins and was effectively “wounded” in that Adam’s body began to decay and he would eventually physically die hundreds of years later, but most importantly, Adam became “spiritually dead” and therefore was correctly diagnosed by Jesus as being “half dead”.

This parable account is representative of the Fall of Adam (and hence all of humankind who are descended from Adam).  The devil (who is “the original thief”, see below) attacked Adam with a lie that led to his becoming naked before God and dead in his sin as a result.  While Adam did not immediately die physically, nonetheless, both Adam and all of his descendents died spiritually at that moment, and were destined to an eternal death in hell.  And God had specifically warned in Genesis 2:17, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” It is clear that Adam and Eve did not die physically in the day that they ate of the fruit of the tree, but they most certainly did die spiritually speaking.  Hence it would not be inaccurate to say that they had become “half dead.”  

Note also that God provides us with additional corroboration for this point, in that, in the original Hebrew, the words that are translated into English as “surelyH4191 dieH4191” actually read in the original Hebrew, מוּת (mûṯ) H4191 which means “die”, but it is repeated twice, and therefore should actually be read as “dying die”.  This is therefore also consistent with the concept of double death (spiritual and physical) and that those who are still unsaved, but are still physically alive, are in fact “half dead”.

2) The Thieves Represent the Devil

How do we know that the thieves represent the devil?  It is because the Bible tells us so in John 10:1-10 beginning with,  “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.” and ending with John 10:10, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have [it] more abundantly.” We should also remember that those who teach another way to Heaven, other than Jesus, are thieves an robbers. (And Jesus is “The Door” of the sheepfold as we read in John 10:7, “Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.) And John 12:6 tells us regarding Judas Iscariot, in whom the devil dwelt, was a thief, “This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.” Also in Hebrews 2:14, We see where Jesus conquers the devil, who had the power of death. “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he (referring to Jesus) also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he (Jesus) might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;”  By the devil’s getting Adam to sin, the devil robbed Adam of his dominion and killed Adam in the process, and thereby the earth, and all of its inhabitants, became the devil’s realm. But we know from 1 Corinthians 15:22 (and1 Corinthians 15:47-49), that Jesus (the Good Samaritan) is the second Adam, Who Alone can bring the believers to eternal life! 

And is it not interesting when speaking about “robbery” we read in Philippians 2:5&6, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:”  Jesus, as God, was equal with God and was not a “robber”, but the devil, who sought to equal with God, means that the devil was, in fact, committing “robbery” and therefore “a thief”, as we read in Isa 14:14, &15, “I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

3) The Priest and the Levite Passed by on the “Other Side”

In the next two verses, in Luke 10:31&32, we read, “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 was at the place, came and looked [on him], and passed by on the other side.”  

These two men, who were both outwardly religious, had no compassion for their fellow man, and are representative of those who read about in 2 Timothy 3:5, “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof:”   They are like scribes and Pharisees to whom Jesus said in Matthew 23:27, “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead [men’s] bones, and of all uncleanness.”  Hence, those Pharisees, to whom Jesus spoke against, were “half dead” themselves. They were focusing on the Old Testament Law for righteousness and to save them give them eternal life.  They did not understand God’s Grace through Faith as found in the New Testament, as such as should have been given to the half-dead stranger (and which was taught in the Old Testament, but they did not understand that, e.g., Psalm 146:9The LORD preserveth the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down.“).  Remember that we are taught in Galatians 3:10-14, “For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, [it is] evident: for, The just shall live by faith And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

It is also interesting to consider that in the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31), we see that there is a great gulf between the two men, across which no man can pass (Luke 16:26).  Once the Priest and the Levite pass by on the other side following the works of the law, they will not be justified.  Moreover, the Priest and the Levite passed by on the “other side”, the Old Testament side… of the Cross!

4) Jesus Christ is the Good Samaritan!

The Samaritan Provided Assistance to the Wounded Man

In Luke 10:33, we read next, “But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion [on him],”

What is a Samaritan? A Samaritan in the Bible was a person from Samaria, a region north of Jerusalem. In Jesus’ day, the Jewish people of Galilee and Judea shunned the Samaritans, viewing them as a mixed race who practiced an impure, half-pagan religion. Samaritans, as a people distinct from the Jews, are first mentioned in the Bible during the time of Nehemiah and the rebuilding of Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity (Ezra 4:17). Evidently, the Samaritans saw themselves as the true descendants of Israel, coming from the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh, the two-half tribes from the two sons of Joseph in Egypt. It has also been claimed that The historian Josephus and Jewish tradition trace the origin of the Samaritans to captivity of Israel’s northern kingdom of ten tribes under Assyria in 721 BC, Jews of the northern kingdom intermarried with Assyrians after the captivity and produced the half-Jewish, half-Gentile Samaritan race.

When the Jews accused Jesus of being a “Samaritan”, they were suggesting that He was a “half-breed” (perhaps because he was known to be from Nazareth, which is in the land given to the tribe of Zebulon, which is associated with the Gentiles and Galilee*), and therefore born of an “unfaithful mother”, and moreover they claimed that Jesus “hast a devil“.  We read this in John 8:47-49, which tells us where Jesus said, He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God. Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil? Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me.” So then, Jesus was accused of being “a Samaritan”, and because He is God in the Flesh, this is another reason that we can view Jesus as the “Good Samaritan”. And as the “Good Samaritan”, Jesus can be viewed as both the “Healer” and “Savior” of the whole world, coming from both “Jew and Gentile”.

In the lawyer’s eyes, the Samaritan was the least likely candidate to act lovingly and compassionately to his neighbor. Jesus is the “stone of stumbling” and the “rock of offense.” (see 1 Peter 2:8 and Isaiah 8:14)

It is also interesting to note that technically, Jesus could indeed be likened to a “half breed”, because Jesus was both fully God and fully man. This is sometimes referred to as the hypostatic union, a term used to describe how God the Son, Jesus Christ, took on a human nature, yet remained fully God at the same time. Jesus always had been God (John 8:58, John 10:30), but at the incarnation, Jesus became a human being (John 1:14). The addition of the human nature to the Divine Nature is Jesus, the God-man. 

*Isaiah 9:1Nevertheless the dimness [shall] not [be] such as [was] in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict [her by] the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations.and in Matthew 4:15The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, [by] the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles;”  

In New Testament times, the Jews despised Samaritans and would have nothing to do with them. The Samaritans were still living primarily around Mount Gerizim (see map) (John 4:1–42) which was within the land given by lot in Joshua’s day to the two half-tribes of Joseph, Ephraim and Manasseh  (Jos 16:1), located north of Jerusalem and which included Jericho and essentially went from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea and northward to the valley of Megiddo at the border of Asher, Zebulon, and Issachar.  But the Samaritans also kept to their own villages (Matthew 10:5, Luke 9:52). Scripture mentions encounters with Samaritans in towns within Samaria because Jesus had to travel through Samaria to get to Jerusalem from Galilee (Luke 17:11–19 and Luke 9:52&53), and they evidently also traveled on roads between Jerusalem and Jericho as is indicated by Jesus in the Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37). 

Jesus met with some adversity when ministering to people in Samaritan villages (Luke 9:52&53) and initially told His disciples not to enter them (Matthew 10:5–6), because the Gospel had to first to be preached “to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Nonetheless, Jesus shared the “Good News” with the Samaritans, most notably when ministering to a Samaritan woman at the well (John 4:4–26) and healing a Samaritan leper (Luke 17:11–19).

Moreover, we know that in Acts 1:8, Jesus told His disciples that, once under the power of the Holy Spirit (which would come to the disciples at Jerusalem at Pentecost), they would be His witnesses in Samaria after Jerusalem and Judea and then on to the entire earth. “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

In Acts chapter 8, that prophecy was fulfilled, and Samaria became an early mission field for the spreading first-century church: for in Acts 8:4 -8, we read, Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed [with them]: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. And there was great joy in that city.

5) Binding Up The Wounds, Pouring in Oil and Wine

Next in Luke 10:34 we read, “And 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.

To the casual reader, it is easy to misconstrue what is taking place.  In looking at only the “plain sense”, it could be readily interpreted that the Samaritan, when pouring in the olive oil in the wounds, was intending for it to serve as some type of healing balm or ointment (something like Omega-3 oil), while pouring in the wine on the wounds, was simply an effort to apply an antiseptic and astringent from that day, within which he would wrap up the wounds up in bandages.  However, this is NOT what is the intent of this parable from a spiritual perspective!

The meaning of the words “oil” and “wine” in the Bible have deep spiritual meaning.  Only Jesus, as represented by the Samaritan Is The Only One Who can spiritually bind up our sin caused wounds.  Jesus is is the Only One Who can anoint the believer with the olive oil (representing the Holy Spirit of God) and Who can spiritually pour in the wine (representing His shed Blood) .

5A) The Oil (of the Olive) Spiritually Represents The Holy Spirit

In Psalm 23:5, we read, “thou anointest my head with oil; …“. In Psalm 133:1-3 “¶[[A Song of degrees of David.]] Behold, how good and how pleasant [it is] for brethren to dwell together in unity! [It is] like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, [even] Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments; As the dew of Hermon, [and as the dew] that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, [even] life for evermore.” The anointing with oil, as was used in the anointing of kings and the high priests, was a sign of the empowerment, blessing, calling out, or choosing by God.  It is sign representing sanctification by the Holy Spirit.

To make this even more clear, we have these verses found in Zechariah 4:1-6,  describing the golden lamp stand and the olive trees that provide the oil for the light of the lamps. “And the angel that talked with me came again, and waked me, as a man that is wakened out of his sleep, And said unto me, What seest thou? And I said, I have looked, and behold a candlestick all [of] gold, with a bowl upon the top of it, and his seven lamps thereon, and seven pipes to the seven lamps, which are upon the top thereof: And two olive trees by it, one upon the right [side] of the bowl, and the other upon the left [side] thereof. So I answered and spake to the angel that talked with me, saying, What [are] these, my lord? Then the angel that talked with me answered and saidunto me, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord. Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This [is] the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

Jesus prayed for His Own to the Father (Please read all of John, Chapter 17). And Jesus, before He ascended, said that He would petition the Father to send the Comforter (the Holy Spirit), the Spirit of Truth, Who is the One Who Takes Care of, and intercedes on behalf of the Believers until Jesus’s Triumphant Return on the Clouds of Glory. This we read in John 14:16-17, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” and in John 14:26, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”  and in John 15:26, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:” and John 16:7, “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.”

And just as we saw earlier…and we need to bring it back to mind here… in 1 Corinthians 6:11we see a direct reference to these two elements, “And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” The believers are “washed” and “sanctified” and “justified” “in the name of Jesus” (through His shed blood) “and by the Spirit of our God” (represented by the anointing oil).

5B) The Wine Spiritually Represents the Atoning Shed Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ

Jesus Himself made clear the connection, and spiritual meaning of wine (which can be drunk of “the fruit of the vine”), to His Blood at the “Last Supper.” We read in Matthew 26:27-29, ¶And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave [it] to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.

Other verses speak plainly of the Blood of Jesus as the means for “washing” and “healing” the believers from their sins, but note in particular the phraseology of the following verses:

1 John 1:7, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

Revelation 1:5&6 “And from Jesus Christ, [who is] the faithful witness, [and] the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, And hath made us kings and priests unto God and hisFather; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

1 Peter 2:24 makes clear our need for Jesus as our Atoning sacrifice to make possible our salvation and eternal life in Heaven with Him.  “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

Other References

1 Peter 1:2Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.”

1 John 5:6, “This is he that came by water and blood, [even] Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.”

Eph 2:13But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.”

Hebrews 10:19Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,

Hebrews 12:24And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than [that of ]Abel.

Hebrews 13:12Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.”

Hebrews 13:20Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,

More Spiritual Insights

It is also noteworthy that in Hosea 2:21-23,  we read,  “And it shall come to pass in that day, I will hear, saith the LORD, I will hear the heavens, and they shall hear the earth; And the earth shall hear the corn, and the wine, and the oil; and they shall hear Jezreel. And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to [them which were] not my people, Thou [art] my people; and they shall say, [Thou art] my God.

The Word of God, the Bible, emphatically tells us that Jesus Is the Word made flesh John 1:14, Is the Bread of Life John 6:35,… so then 

1) Jesus’s Body is represented by the corn,

2) Jesus’s Blood is represented by the wine, and

3) The Holy Spirit of Truth is represented by the (olive) oil.  They All speak to us from the Bible, and those on earth to whom God gives the “hearing ears” Proverbs 20:12 will “hear” what They are saying through and from the Bible.

Remember when Jesus gave His testimony to be passed to John the Baptist in response to the question as to whether Jesus was the Messiah or not?, “Luke 7:22, “Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached.” and later in Acts 3:1-26, we read where Peter healed the lame man seeking alms to whom Peter said, “Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God:” Again in Acts 8:7 we read the account of the disciples healing infirmities that include lameness, “For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed.”

The multiple healings took place by the intercession of Jesus and His testimony ended with the statement that “to the poor the gospel is preached.” That is the only way that spiritual healing is possible. The Gospel of Salvation through Jesus Christ, Alone, must be preached!  There is NO other way!

Putting him on “his own beast”

While this point is not entirely clear, we at least know that Jesus came into Jerusalem (on Palm Sunday) riding on a beast, per se, in fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he [is] just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

Matthew 21:5, “Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.

Luke 19:35And they brought him to Jesus: and they cast their garments upon the colt, and they set Jesus thereon.

John 12:15Fear not, daughter of Sion: behold, thy King cometh, sitting on an ass’s colt.”

And is it not interesting that in Israel’s prophesy for Judah (which addressed Jesus) we read in”Genesis 49:9-12, “Judah [is] a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up? The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him [shall] the gathering of the people [be]. Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass’s colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: His eyes [shall be] red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.

We also know that Jesus is “The Vine” as we read in John 15:1I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.” and in John 15:5  “I am the vine, ye [are] the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.”  The foal and his asse’s colt were bound to the vine, and he (Jesus) washed his garments in wine, clearly typifying blood.  

It is not clear how much further to take this analogy at this time.

Taking the Wounded, Half-dead, Man to the Inn

Although it is not entirely clear what the inn spiritually represents, it is clear that it was a safe haven, an inn of respite.  However, we also know that in the Greek the word for “inn” is πανδοχεῖον (pandocheion), G3829, which in fact, does mean “an inn, a public house for the reception of strangers.” So then, it is therefore not unreasonable to say that the inn could be a spiritual representation of the church that welcomes in “strangers” because of what we find in Ephesians 2:19, “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”  It is also notable that the Good Samaritan left the inn, but said that he would return.  Jesus is in Heaven until His return on Judgment Day, so we can also see that the inn cannot be representative of Heaven in this parable.

Taking Care of the Wounded Man

We know from the Bible that Jesus cares for us. 1 Peter 5:7Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” Moreover, Jesus said in John 10:11-13, “I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.”

Jesus is the one who cares for us and pays the full price to ensure our complete healing from the sin-caused, otherwise fatal, wounds, and Jesus Alone ensures that we continue to be fed with the Bread of Life. 

6) Jesus Paid the Full Price for the Sinners He Saves

The Parable of the Good Samaritan ends with Luke 10:35,  “And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave [them] to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.” 

Jesus is the one who cares for us and pays the full price to ensure our complete healing from the sin caused otherwise fatal wounds, and He Alone ensures that we continue to be fed with the Bread of Life.  

It is clear that when Jesus saves a destitute sinner, who would otherwise remain spiritually dead forever, Jesus neither abandons that person, but rather makes sure that they are taken fully care of.  Jesus entrusts us to the Comforter, the Holy Spirit.  Moreover, whatever additional debt that that sinner occurs throughout the rest of their lives, Jesus assures us that those are fully paid for as well. Jesus paid our debt in full in the Atonement nearly 2000 years ago by suffering in the place of sinners whom He came to seek and to save!  

The Two Pence are like the Widow’s Two Mites

We should also take this opportunity to remember the widow with the two mites (a mite is the least valuable coin during Jesus day while a pence is thought to represent a day’s wage). Mark 12:42-44 (see also Luke 21:1–4 ), “And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called [unto him] his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: For all [they] did cast in of their abundance; but she ofher want did cast in all that she had, [even] all her living.” 

In both case we see the number “two, which is spiritually indicating a witness or testimony. (Deuteronomy 19:15One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.“) In both cases there is an indication that something less could have been paid.  The widow could have kept back one mite.  But instead, in both cases, the payment involving two is representative of a desire to pay “everything” necessary, in the widows case, “all her living“.  The lesson here is that we must be “willing” from our heart, and with all of our means, to serve the Lord Jesus Christ.

Deuteronomy 6:5And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.”, and

Deuteronomy 30:6And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live.

Matthew 6:19–21(See also Luke 12:33&34) “Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Paying the Full and Entire Debt To “the Host” Keeping the Believers Safe and Well Cared For in The Inn

Jesus is the one who cares for us.  Jesus paid the full price to God the Father to ensure the believer’s complete healing from the sin caused otherwise fatal wounds, and He Alone ensures that we are also fed with the Bread of Life.  And regarding the spiritual “Type” represented by “the host”, it is reasonable to assume Either or Both of the GodHead (God the Father and The Holy Spirit) are being represented by “the host” in this parable. We also know that the believers, once saved, are 

We know this because when Jesus saves a destitute sinner, who would otherwise remain spiritually dead forever, Jesus neither abandons that person, but rather makes sure that they are taken fully care of.  Jesus entrusts all the believers to the Comforter, the Holy Spirit of God, in full harmony with the Will of God the Father in Heaven. Moreover, whatever additional debt that that sinner occurs throughout the rest of their lives, Jesus assures us that those are fully paid for as well.  Jesus paid the believer’s debt in full in the Atonement nearly 2000 years ago by suffering in the place of sinners whom He came to seek and to save!

Ephesians 2:4-6, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised [us] up together, and made [us] sit together in heavenly [places] in Christ Jesus:

1 John 3:2Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.”

Romans 8:38&39, “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

The Physical and Temporal (as Well as the Spiritual) Needs of Our Neighbor Are Also in View

However, dear reader, please also remember, while this study has placed a heavy emphasis on the “spiritual” aspects of this parable, there is still the issue of physical/temporal caring for our neighbor.  We have several strong admonitions from God regarding our neighbor, or our brother or sister.

  1. 1 John 4:2021, “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.
  2. Galatians 5:14For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

  3. James 2:14, “¶What [doth it] profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be [ye] warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what [doth it] profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.”

Jesus is Coming Back Again!

We cannot, and should not, miss the point that the Good Samaritan said that he would return. He specifically said to the innkeeper, “when I come again, I will repay thee.” That is most significant, because Jesus is indeed coming back, and He will repay indeed. For the Believer, Jesus will have repaid the full price for the sins of His Elect .  But we should also remember that when Jesus comes back the next, and Final time, that he will most certainly repay the wages for sin (eternal death) to the ungodly of the world with a vengeance. Romans 12:19Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but [rather] give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance [is] mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

7) Who Is Our Neighbor?

In Luke 10:36 &37, after presenting the parable, Jesus asked the lawyer, “Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.

Jesus makes clear that everyone is our neighbor, regardless of cultural heritage, nationality, or social, economic, or educational status. Everyone in the world needs to hear the Gospel of Salvation through Jesus Christ.  Moreover, Jesus goes further because He went further to save sinners, His natural enemies.  We read in Matthew 5:43-48 ¶”Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more [than others]? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.


The conclusion of the matter is that all believing Christians must show compassion to their fellow man, their neighbors, their brothers and sisters, by preaching the Gospel of Salvation through Jesus Christ Alone.  To have “compassion”, is to desire the very best possible for someone in need, which is that our fellow man might be saved from death in hell, and to have eternal life in Heaven with Jesus.  In order for anyone to become saved, they must hear the Gospel… the Word of God must be preached!  Remember that Jesus’ last words on this earth just prior to His ascension, He commanded that the Words, which He had spoken, must be preached to the “uttermost part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8). And remember also, that Jesus said in John 6:63, “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, [they] are spirit, and [they] are life.”  And remember also that Jesus said in John 6:53&54, “Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” 

To be “quickened” is to be made alive.  

  1. The Holy Spirit  (represented by the oil), Is what raises the believers from the dead, and The Holy Spirit does that through the preaching of the Word of God (Jesus Is the Word and Is also God John 1:1).
  2. The Atoning Shed Blood of Jesus Christ (represented by the wine) gives the believers eternal life. We know this because, according to Leviticus 17:11 (as well as other passages going back to Genesis 9:4) “For the life of the flesh [is] in the blood:” Remembering also that John 1:14 tells us, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
So then, the Words of God, as are found only in the Bible, contain both the Spirit of God and the Gospel of Salvation through Jesus’ Sacrifice, exemplified by His shed blood, which is the means of obtaining eternal life. The proclamation of this “good news” is the means that God uses to raise people from the dead to eternal life. Every person on this earth (our neighbor), who is yet unsaved, is no different than that certain man heading down to Hell, attacked by the devil, and robbed, wounded, left naked in sin, and is spiritually dead.  The Samaritan was the only one of the three men that “…shewed mercy on him.” “Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.” And in the process, we should also be attentive to helping to meet our neighbors’ temporal/physical/earthly needs as well. This is the true meaning of the Parable of the Good Samaritan.
John 6:40, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.

Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me!


This author cannot claim to be the only one who sees the parable from an allegorical perspective, as (according to Wikipedia it had been noted as early as the 5th Century by Origen who described the allegory in similar, albeit in somewhat different (not identical) terms.

Explore posts in the same categories: Bible Studies

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