Luke 10:37-42

Luke 10:37 (KJB)
And he said, He that showed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.

Then the lawyer answered the only logical way he could and point to the Samaritan as the one who showed the true neighborly compassion. Then Jesus says to him, go and do likewise. In other words, this story was not just a story to see if you can tell what being neighborly is, but it is a story which shows us the mindset which every believer needs to possess. In fact the word “Go” is in the Imperative Mood making it a command. Christians are to be compassionate people because of our transformation. True compassion like true love must be linked with actions.

Luke 10:38 (KJB)
Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house.

After this Jesus and His followers had now gone to Bethany where they were welcomed into the home of Martha, Mary, and Lazarus. These three had becomes very close friends of Jesus. Bethany means “house of unripe figs” and was approximately two miles (3.2 km) from Jerusalem. Martha was probably the older sister and the homeowner.

Luke 10:39 (KJB)
And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.

The group had sat down and Jesus was teaching so Mary, the younger sister, decided to join the group and sit and listen with them. This gives a great principle in that it never hurts to put aside the daily routine once and a while to attend to the words of Scripture. Mary had done just that because she knew that the housework would still be there but Jesus would not always be there. That is the purpose of Bible conferences, so that we can come apart and be spiritually refreshed.

Luke 10:40 (KJB)
But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.

Cumbered - Distracted or overburdened

With all the people that arrived at their home with Jesus, Martha probably had begun to make a lot of food to feed their honored Guest and those who were with Him. Martha had begun preparations but the task was great and she needed help. When she saw Mary sitting with the group listening to Jesus, she probably became upset and no doubt disturbed the teaching by asking Jesus if He did not care if Mary left her alone to serve alone? Then Martha commands Jesus to ask Mary to come and help her with the preparations. Martha was really venting her emotions in this situation. Martha had brought their guest into the family disagreement which was looked down upon in those days. Martha may have meant well but she went about this situation the wrong way.

Luke 10:41 (KJB)
And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:

Careful - Anxious
Troubled - Disturbed or confused

Here are two principles of worldly living, anxiety and trouble. Jesus knew the personality of Martha in an instant because He spoke of her being in this anxious mindset about many things. She may have been one given to much worry unless everything was perfect and done the way she wanted it done. What Martha needed was to restructure her priorities so she would shed herself of that anxious lifestyle. There is a big difference about being busy and being busy and adding anxiety to that busyness. Jesus did not reject Martha’s service to Him but He wanted her to know that her service should be done in a peaceable way and not one of erupting emotions.

Luke 10:42 (KJB)
But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.

The one thing which is needful in the life of people is salvation. Mary had chosen to sit and listen to Jesus who had the words of eternal life. This life is transitory with all its troubles and anxieties which is evidenced by Martha. Once a person is saved, that eternal life can never be taken away from them because eternal life is sourced in what Christ did and not what we do or did. Mary knew that when Jesus finished speaking, there were plenty of people to help prepare the meal for them, even if it was a little late. Jesus was trying to redirect Martha’s affections from this world and its foibles to eternal things. (Col 3:2 KJV) Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. It is things of Heaven which are needful because this earth will pass away.