Focal Passages: Matt. 25:19-21, 29, 34-40; Mk. 10:42-45
A sharp, young intellectual once asked Jesus a question,
“Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
Jesus forces the guy to answer his own question by pointing
him back to the scriptures.
And after quoting the two great commandments as a synopsis
of the Mosaic Law, Jesus answers: “You’ve got it. That’s it. Do that and you
Then the young intellectual asks a typical lawyer-like,
hair-splitting question: “And who is my neighbor?”
Really what he was getting at was something like this:
“Define in precise legal terms who it is that I can get away with not loving,
because there are some people I don’t want to have to care about.”
Are you aware that out of the 6.5 billion people in the
world, over 3 billion live in desperate poverty?
Over half of the world’s population struggles to survive on
less than $2 per day!
That’s less than what we spend on a drink and a candy bar
for a snack!
Across our globe, 26,000 children will die today from
starvation or preventable diseases.
They are dying because they don’t have adequate nutrition,
access to clean drinking water, or proper sanitation. In short, they will die
because they lack something that we take for granted as “necessities.”
Are they not in the same shape as the man the Good Samaritan
found in the ditch?
Hasn’t life in a fallen world robbed them of hope, stripped
them of their daily needs, and left them half dead? What will we do about it?
Will we pass by on the other side, pretending we don’t see
Will we justify our inaction with empty claims of being too
Or will we do the typical “Baptist thing:” write a check so
that someone else can take care of the dirty work?
It’s time we get off our padded pews and get down in the
ditch where the people in need can be found.
After all… “If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of
daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Depart in peace, be warmed and
filled,’ but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body,
what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is
dead” (James 2:15-17, NKJV).
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