Faith & Insight: Neglecting the needy means neglecting Jesus
In one of Jesus’ last parables, He tells a story of final judgment. All mankind is gathered before the throne and divided into two groups.
“Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’ Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’ Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:41-45)
When we neglect the needy, we’re neglecting Jesus! When we help others, we’re serving Jesus!
Please join me in praying the following prayer adapted from the Book of Common Prayer.
Almighty and Most Merciful God, we remember before you all poor and neglected persons whom it would be easy for us to forget: the homeless and the destitute, the old and the sick, those wrestling with their demons, and all who have none to care for them.
Look with pity, O heavenly Father, upon the people in this land who live with injustice, terror, disease, and death as their constant companions. Have mercy upon us.
Help us to heal those who are broken in body or spirit, and to turn their sorrow into joy.
Grant this, Father, for the love of your son, who for our sake became poor,
Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.
Bruce Henderson is minister of the Airport Road Church of Christ. More information can be found at http://www.carsoncitychurchofchrist.com.