If I tell you the gospel is all that matters, and never tell you how to apply it to your hardships, you would eventually think I was crazy. You’re having problems at work, and I respond “just preach the gospel.” You’re having issues with your spouse, and I respond “the gospel is all that matters.” Your child is rebelling and harming themselves, and I respond “the gospel is all you need.” So why are you so quick to say “preach the gospel” in response to social & racial injustices? The gospel requires ACTION. Jesus exemplified that by leaving the comforts of his privileged dwelling, coming down to be with us, walk with us, take on all our experiences & temptations & hardships, and comforted us so that we can comfort others. He didn’t just preach, He LIVED.
You see us wounded on the road, but you choose to walk on the other side of the road like the Levite and priest, but you say (or think) “they must have done something to get beat up.” So next time, knowing that there’s a possibility of seeing us wounded on the road, you take a different road altogether. You’re comfortable & free of “unsightly” images on this road. But the problem is now the wounded people are also showing up on your road. You think (and sometimes say) “Why can’t they just stay on the other road? I don’t want to see this! I know Jesus used the Samaritan as an example of showing compassion & loving your neighbor, and I know the Samaritan never asked the wounded man what he did to get robbed, but I don’t want to be a Samaritan. Why would I want to be inconvenienced, and use my money and time for someone who probably wouldn’t even appreciate it. Look, I’m fine. I didn’t get robbed on this road, so clearly there’s no problem. And the fact that it’s only you people who keep getting wounded on this road, means it’s not my problem. Why can’t you people just stop crying out for help & leave us alone? Stay hidden! I have things to do & places to go, and your proclaimed issues are disrupting my perfect view of this road.”
So maybe instead of responding to your neighbor’s pain by saying words are enough, it’s probably more fitting to honestly say “I don’t want to be bothered in the comforts of my privilege to deal with the experiences you claim to be having.”