Rev. Gerald Kisner of Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church speaks in the DeSantis Family Chapel.
|Rev. Kisner shared thoughts about the level of "chaos" in modern society.|
In an age of reality television and in a culture that celebrates competitiveness, some may wonder whether the parable of the Good Samaritan is still relevant today, the Rev. Gerald Kisner, pastor of Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church in West Palm Beach, said recently at Palm Beach Atlantic University.
The “cultural chaos” we see in reality television glorifies the achievements of individuals, he said. “The culture does not encourage brotherly sharing and sisterly love,” he said.
Rev. Kisner said he believes that the lessons of the Good Samaritan are still of value today, but “we have to look at this parable in a broader way,” he said, speaking in the DeSantis Family Chapel.
“It’s not just about helping this poor soul,” he said. “It’s where do we engage ourselves in meaningful interaction with the other?”
He asked those in attendance to consider the plight of the homeless. “Many times all they want to do is to be recognized as a human being made in the likeness of God,” he said.
He said that it involves adopting a “relational theology,” adding that “Jesus was relational.”
“How do we relate to those on the margins of our culture? How do we deal with the have-nots in a culture of plenty?”
Rev. Kisner also spoke about eliciting “structural change.” In the parable, the Good Samaritan shows kindness to a robbery victim on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho. Today, the goal should be to make life’s Jericho roads safe for travelers, he said.
He also noted that the kind Samaritan not only felt sympathy but also took action to assist the man in need.
“The parable says it’s not just talking the talk, it’s walking the walk,” Rev. Kisner said.