“Opie and His Merry Men”
Opie and his friends are playing Robin Hood in the woods and meet a hobo who says he is down on his luck. “Willie” plays on the boys’ sympathy when he tells them about his “game” leg and how poor people are always being looked down on and mistreated by the rich. Playing to their romanticized ideas about Robin Hood, Willie gets them to share their lunch with him, and then they take from the “rich” (their parents) to give to the poor (Willie). This experience causes Opie to question why some people have plenty and others struggle just to make ends meet.
Who can refresh our memories about the story of Robin Hood?
“Thou shall not steal.” (Exodus 20:15)
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ’Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?” The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ “ (Matthew 25:34-40)
The Victim Mentality
What was Willie’s attitude about his situation?
What does The Bible say about working or not working?
“A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest – and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man.” (Proverbs 24:33-34)
The Law Will Provide
1) In this episode, Opie is confused. He knows he shouldn’t steal, but the hobo needs help. Andy made the comment that “stealing is stealing,” but are there ever situations that we should break the law to help those in need?
2) Discuss how Jesus handled the law in Luke 13:10-17:
On a Sabbath, Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” Then he put his hands on her and immediately she straightened up and praised God.”
“Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue ruler said to the people, “there are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.” The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?” When he said this, his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all they wonderful things he was doing.
3) In today’s society, we see Willie’s attitude in a lot of people. Discuss the value and benefits of a good work ethic.
4) While it was obvious that Andy had a clear picture of Willie’s motives, he didn’t show much compassion to the man. When dealing with those who are less fortunate, should we be more concerned with their motives or more concerned with meeting their needs?
“You see, Ope, it ain’t only the materialistic things in the world that makes a person rich, there’s love and friendship – that can make a person rich.” - Barney