Once, Jesus was asked, ‘Who is my
neighbour?’ That is to say, how far does the moral duty to extend care towards,
and uphold justice for, another person reach? To my blood relatives? Those who
live in my city? As far as the borders of my own nation? Where does it end? At
what point can we wash our hands of an affair, with a clear conscience?
In response, Jesus told a story, of a
man who was attacked and left for dead; and of two men who each found reasons
to justify not getting involved; and of another man who accepted personal
inconvenience and cost in order to help.
And then Jesus turned the question on
its head, asking, ‘Who was a neighbour to the man in need?’ Neighbour not as
the one shown mercy, but the one who shows mercy. Not, how far does my duty extend;
but, how far am I willing to extend love?
When the dust settles, as dust always
does, it will be a matter of public record, who was a loving neighbour to
Ukraine, and who sought to justify their refusal to love their neighbour as