9 Quotes From Jesus On Why We Must Help The Poor – THE BORGEN PROJECT
SEATTLE — The city of Seattle is home to the Seattle Mariners. No matter what a person’s religious convictions are, there is always the possibility of discovering essential teachings in the sacred books of the world’s many religious traditions. One of the most important messages of the New Testament and Jesus Christ is that mankind should do all in its power to assist the impoverished. In particular, these teachings ring true for Americans, as many of those who argue for reductions in social expenditure and foreign aid also have a strong and intense relationship with Jesus and Christianity.
- Luke 6:20-21 (KJV) When he saw his followers looking up at him, he remarked, ‘Blessed are you who are poor, for it is yours that the kingdom of God is. You who are hungry right now will be blessed because you will be satisfied. Luke 4:16-19 says, “Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh afterwards.” After arriving at Nazareth, where he had grown up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath, as was his usual at the time. He rose to his feet to read, and a scroll from the prophet Isaiah was handed across to him. He unrolled the scroll and came to the part where it said: ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to deliver good news to the poor.’ He read the rest of the passage. “He has sent me to announce freedom for the prisoners and sight restoration for those who have lost their sight, to set the oppressed free, and to herald the coming of the year of the Lord’s favor.” Matthew 25:34-36 “Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world,” the king will say to those at his right hand, “for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” (Mark 10:21-22) Then Jesus looked at him and said, ‘You need one thing
- Go, sell what you have and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven
- Then come, follow me.’ “You lack one thing
- Go, sell what you have and give the money to the poor,” Jesus said. When he realized what had happened, he was surprised and grieved, for he possessed a large amount of property
- Mark 12:41-44 He took a seat across the street from the treasury and observed the mob depositing money into the vault. A great number of wealthy individuals contributed large sums. A poor widow came and deposited two little copper coins, each of which is worth a cent, in the box. Then he brought his followers together and told them, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has contributed more to the treasury than all of those who are donating to it.” For all of them have given from their riches, but she has given from her poverty, giving everything she had, everything she had to survive on.’
- Luke 14:12-14 ‘When you host a luncheon or supper, don’t invite your friends, brothers, relatives, or wealthy neighbors, for fear that they may invite you in return, and you will be reimbursed,’ he said. Invite the poor, the disabled, the lame, and the blind to a banquet instead of inviting everyone else. Because they are unable to repay you, and because you will be reimbursed at the resurrection of the righteous, you will be blessed.’
- Luke 16:19-25 One day, there was a wealthy guy who dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted lavishly every day of the week. Even the dogs would come to his gate and lick the sores of a poor man named Lazarus who desired to be fed from the scraps that fell from the wealthy man’s dinner
- Even the dogs would come and lick the sores of Lazarus. The poor guy died and was taken away by the angels to live with Abraham in the afterlife. Luke 11:39-42 describes the death and burial of the rich man. ‘Now you Pharisees clean the surface of the cup and the plate, but on the inside you are brimming with greed and iniquity,’ the Lord remarked to him. You cretins! Isn’t it true that the person who created the outer also created the interior? So give away those things that are within you as alms, and you will see that everything will be clean for you. Nevertheless, woe betide you, Pharisees! In exchange for this, you tithe mint and rue and herbs of all kinds while neglecting justice and the love of God.’
- Luke 12:16–21 (KJV) Then he told them a parable: ‘A wealthy man’s farm produced an abundance of food. In his mind’s eye he asked himself, ‘What should I do now that I don’t have a place to keep my crops?’ “I’m going to do this: I’m going to demolish my barns and replace them with larger ones, where I’ll keep all of my grain and other things,” he explained. Then I’ll say to my soul, ‘Soul, you’ve had enough of food and drink stored up for many years
- Take it easy, eat, drink, and enjoy yourself.’ God, on the other hand, replied to him, “You fool!” Your life is being asked of you right now, in the middle of the night. And who will be in charge of the things you’ve prepared for them?’ ‘It is the same with individuals who accumulate wealth for themselves but are not wealthy in the eyes of God.’
Without regard to metaphysics or religious belief, Jesus may be called one of the most renowned humanitarians in the history of mankind. Among the many areas of life in which his teachings may be applied worldwide are efforts to alleviate the suffering of millions of people living in poverty all over the world. —Jake Simon et al. Photo:Flickr
What Does God Have To Say About Poverty?
Bible Verses to Help You Get Out of Poverty People who have been crushed, according to the Bible, might expect God to “take up their case.” When we follow His example, we become an advocate for the disadvantaged, doing everything we can to fight for justice on their behalf. The Bible presents two ideas on how to overcome poverty: first, how to be generous and second, how to be generous.
1. God is an advocate to the oppressed
- It is the Lord who provides a safe haven for the downtrodden and a fortress in times of difficulty. In Psalm 9:9, God says that the wicked will be cast into the region of the dead, along with all the countries that have forgotten God. God, on the other hand, will never forget the poor, and the hope of the oppressed will never die. In Psalm 9:17-18, the Lord states, “Because the poor are robbed and the needy groan, I will now arise,” referring to the plight of the impoverished. “I will defend them against those who wish to harm them.” I shall scream, “Who is like you, Lord?” with my entire self, according to Psalm 12:5. You save the poor from those who are too strong for them, and you save the poor and needy from those who would plunder them.” — Psalm 35:10
- I will abundantly laud the Lord with my tongue, and I will praise him in the midst of a huge throng of worshipers. Because he is at the right hand of people who are in need, defending their lives from those who would sentence them to death. It is my understanding that the Lord ensures justice for the poor and protects the cause of those who are in need of assistance. — Psalm 109:30-31
- May the mountains provide prosperity to the people, and the hills yield the fruit of righteousness, according to Psalm 140:12. Please help him to protect those who are oppressed among his people and to rescue those who are in need
- Please help him to defeat the oppressor. — Psalm 72:3-4
- For he will rescue the helpless who call out to him, and the distressed who have no one to turn to for assistance. He will have compassion on the weak and the needy, and he will save the helpless from certain death. He will save them from injustice and violence, for their blood is valuable in his eyes, and he will save them. The Lord our God, who sits enthroned on high and stoops down to gaze at the sky and the earth, is described in Psalm 72:12-14 as follows: And he takes them from their pits of ashes and places them with princes, with the princes of his people, and elevates them from their plights of poverty and adversity. In Psalm 113:5-8, it says, “Blessed are those who have the God of Jacob as their aid, and whose trust is in the Lord their God.” He is the Creator of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them, and he has remained loyal throughout all of time. He fights for the rights of the disadvantaged and provides meals for the poor in his community. The Lord releases captives, the Lord restores sight to the blind, the Lord raises those who are bent down, and the Lord is compassionate toward the upright. The Lord keeps an eye on the stranger and provides for the fatherless and widow, but he ruins the plans of the wicked and makes them fail. The poor and the needy have found refuge in you, and you have provided shelter from the storm and shade from the sun. — Psalm 146:5-9
- You have provided sanctuary for the poor and the needy in their suffering. — Isaiah 25:4
- Looking at his followers, he remarked, “Blessed are you who are poor, for the kingdom of God is yours.” You who are hungry right now will be blessed because you will be satiated. It is fortunate for those who mourn today, since they will laugh afterwards.” — Matthew 6:20-21
- Luke 6:20-21
2. God uses His people to help those in need
- Because they share their food with the needy, the generous will reap the benefits of their generosity. — Proverbs 22:9
- Never let your spiritual zeal wane, but always strive to do your best in serving the Lord. Enjoy your hope, endure sorrow, and pray with persistence. Give to those who are in need among the Lord’s people. Make an effort to be welcoming. — Romans 12:11-13
- 1 Corinthians 13:11-13
Are you actively assisting others who are less fortunate than yourself? Compassion International provides you with a straightforward method of assisting others. The hope and aid you provide to a family in need will be channeled through God, who will use your generosity to provide clean drinking water and educational opportunities as well as nourishment and medical care as well as job training and other assistance. Most importantly, your sponsored kid will come to understand that God loves him or her!
20 Bible Verses about the Poor
“That’s not fair!” says the speaker. From the moment we are children, we have had difficulty accepting the way things are. The world isn’t fair, and it’s really frustrating to have to deal with. As we grow older, we come to know that unfairness is a far more serious problem than we previously recognized. In terms of fairness, it is not just a question of who received the greater quantity of ice cream or who gets to play the PlayStation first. People sometimes find themselves in difficult situations through no fault of their own.
God makes several references to money and finances throughout the Bible.
But the matter also comes up frequently because God cares about the impoverished and wants His people to show compassion and sympathy toward them in their plight.
Here are 20 of the numerous Bible scriptures that speak about the poor that will help you gain a deeper knowledge of God’s compassion toward the impoverished.
1. Make provision for the poor (Leviticus 19:9–10)
“Harvesting your land’s harvest should not extend to the very boundaries of your field, nor should it be used to gather the gleanings of your land’s crop. Avoid going through your vineyard a second time or picking up any grapes that have fallen off the vine. Leave them to the plight of the poor and foreigners. I am the Lord your God, and I am speaking to you.” The Israelites weren’t the only people in the ancient Near East who didn’t harvest the edges of their fields; the Egyptians and the Babylonians did as well.
The law of Yahweh was distinct.
However, this sacrifice was made in order to assure that the destitute and immigrants would have enough to eat as well.
2. Do not pervert justice (Leviticus 19:15)
“Do not corrupt justice; do not show prejudice to the poor or favoritism to the powerful; rather, judge your friend honestly,” the Bible says. The Israelites’ sense of justice was to be a reflection of God’s impartiality. The impartial character of the Hebrew judicial system was to provide a remedy for the lack of fairness that existed in a damaged world. However, the impoverished were to be cared for, but not in a way that was discriminatory towards the wealthy. Likewise, when it came to making choices, the wealthy were not to be given preferential treatment.
3. Help the poor among you (Leviticus 25:35–36)
“Help them as you would a foreigner or stranger if any of your fellow Israelites falls into poverty and is unable to maintain themselves while living among you. This will allow them to continue to dwell in your community. Do not seek any interest or profit from them, but rather fear your God, in order for them to be able to continue living among you.” The Israelites were unafraid to provide hospitality to their guests. The Israelites were required to treat the sojourners among them with decency and respect since they were to serve as a light to the Gentiles, and indeed to all nations (Isaiah 49:6).
4. Help the poor among your fellow Israelites (Deuteronomy 15:7-8)
“Please do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward anybody who is impoverished among your fellow Israelites in any of the communities of the land that the Lord your God is giving you. Instead, be generous with your time and resources, lending people anything they require.” Throughout the Old Testament, God gives His people specific instructions on how to treat one another and the world around them. The Lord urges them to look after one another, and He encourages them to look after others who are not related to them.
The Israelites should keep the best interests of everyone in mind.
He summarizes the entire rule by saying that we should love God and love our neighbor. “And who is my neighbor?” the lawyer inquires, in an attempt to defend himself. The Parable of the Good Samaritan is told at this point, demonstrating that we are all one another’s neighbors.
5. There will always be poor among you (Deuteronomy 15:10–11)
“Give them liberally and do it without grumbling in your heart, and the Lord your God will bless you in all your labor and in everything you undertake. It is inevitable that there will always be impoverished people in the world. In order to do this, I instruct you to be kind toward your fellow Israelites who are destitute and in need in your land.” As the apostle Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 9:6–7, “God loves a joyful giver.” God didn’t only want the Israelites to give liberally to the destitute; He wanted them to do so with a thankful heart, as He had commanded Moses.
God would bless them if they were selfless and considerate of others.
However, this does not decrease the urge to charity; on the contrary, it strengthens it.
6. Uphold the cause of the poor (Psalm 82:3–4)
“Give generously to them and do it without grumbling in your heart; then the Lord your God will reward you in all your work and in everything you undertake. People who live in poverty will always exist in this country. In order to do this, I instruct you to be kind to your fellow Israelites who are destitute and in need in your land.” We are reminded by Paul in 2 Corinthians 9:6–7 that “God loves a joyful giver.” God didn’t only want the Israelites to give liberally to the destitute; He wanted them to do so with a thankful heart, as He had instructed Moses.
The blessings of God would be upon them if they were selfless and compassionate.
Nevertheless, the urge to charity is not diminished, rather it is strengthened.
7. The Lord secures justice (Psalm 140:12)
The Lord ensures justice for the destitute and protects the cause of the needy, and I am certain in this.” As recorded in Leviticus 25:35–36, God instructs the Israelites that when it comes to dealing with the destitute, they should be fearful of God. Through Scripture, God urges His people to be generous and fair to the needy, but He also reminds them that justice will come one way or another—and that it is far preferable to choose justice rather than experience God’s justice—than to experience God’s justice.
8. Be kind to the needy (Proverbs 14:21)
According to the Bible, it is a sin to disdain one’s neighbor; but, the one who is compassionate to the poor is blessed.
Love your neighbor as yourself was not a commandment that appeared out of nowhere when Jesus gave us the mandate to love our neighbor as ourselves. As seen by their treatment of others, particularly the impoverished, Israel’s righteousness could be seen.
9. Oppressing the poor shows contempt for their Maker (Proverbs 14:31)
According to the Bible, “Whoever oppresses the poor displays disdain for their Creator, but whoever is friendly to the poor praises God.” It is vital to remember that God is directly affected by our treatment of the less fortunate. When we are generous to people in need, we demonstrate our reverence for God. After all, He is their creator and He loves them as much as they love Him. However, we must keep in mind that the inverse is also true. When we abuse the poor, we are showing disrespect to the Lord.
10. Never gloat over disaster (Proverbs 17:5)
“Whoever mocks the destitute displays disrespect for their Creator; whoever gloats over misfortune will not go unpunished,” the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said. God does not distinguish between oppression of the poor and other forms of injustice. Demonstrating contempt for the poor or making light of events that render people impoverished is a form of disdain for God’s creation. Everyone has been endowed with incalculable value. It is God’s desire that individuals treat others in ways that reinforce that value, regardless of the size of their financial assets.
11. Kindness to the poor is like lending to God (Proverbs 19:17)
“Whoever is kind to the needy gives to the Lord, and the Lord will repay them for their deeds,” the Bible says. Consider the implications of owing God money. That is exactly what occurs when you demonstrate generosity to the less fortunate people in your life. It is possible that the Lord might simply require that we care for the destitute, yet He does not do so. And He pledges to compensate His children for every act of kindness that they perform on His behalf.
12. Hearing the cries of the poor (Proverbs 21:13)
“Whoever closes their ears to the cries of the destitute will likewise cry out and be unheard,” says the Bible. Even while it’s tempting to read this text and conclude that God would not hear the prayers of people who disregard the plight of the poor, this interpretation is inaccurate. God is not disinterested in us because of our shortcomings. However, how we treat others is one thing that He takes into consideration while deciding on how to respond. The author of Proverbs wishes to convey a simple yet deep message to his audience.
If they continued to ignore the screams of the destitute, they would cultivate a society in which it was simple to turn a blind eye to necessities.
13. Do not exploit the poor in court (Proverbs 22:22–23)
Do not abuse the poor because they are poor, and do not crush the poor in court because the Lord will take up their case and exact life for life as a result of their poverty. A location where the destitute may go and get justice in God’s eyes, the courtroom was one of those places. If the legal system is corrupt and becomes a tool for the wealthy to take advantage of the poor, where can the underprivileged turn for fair treatment and justice?
As a result of the abuse of the courts by the most vulnerable members of society, God steps in as their public defender, and they will get justice.
14. The righteous care about the poor (Proverbs 29:7)
“The pious are concerned about justice for the impoverished, while the wicked are unconcerned about such things.” At the end of the day, the law is summarized in our love for God and for one another. This indicates that our righteousness is seen in our concern for others, particularly those who are in need of assistance. The wicked are worried about the destitute because their attention is only focused on their own personal goals.
15. God does not want hollow worship (Isaiah 58:6–10)
“That’s the sort of fasting it I’ve chosen: to loosen the chains of injustice and untangle the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke, isn’t that the kind of fasting I’ve chosen? Why not help the hungry by sharing your food with them, or to offer a safe haven for a destitute wanderer? Why not dress the naked when you see them, and resist the temptation to turn away from your own flesh and blood?” That is when your light will break forth like the morning sun, and your healing will come almost immediately.
Afterward, you’ll reach out to the Lord, and he’ll answer; you’ll cry out for rescue, and he’ll respond with: Here I am.” If you cast off the yoke of tyranny, with the pointing finger and spiteful discourse, and if you expend yourself on behalf of the hungry and supply the wants of the downtrodden, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday of your life.
-” God had to tell Israel on a number of occasions that He was not interested in rote practices.
That Israel would be a beacon to the nations was God’s intention from the beginning.
This is why He reminded them on a regular basis of their responsibilities for the defenseless and disadvantaged.
16. Proclaiming good news to the poor (Isaiah 61:1)
“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, for the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor and the oppressed of the earth. The Lord has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom to the captives, and to bring those who are imprisoned out of the darkness.” Eventually, Jesus would take the stage in the synagogue and declare that these remarks were a prophesy concerning His own ministry, thereby kicking off His public ministry. Given how vital this task is to Jesus, we should not be surprised that He chose these words from the entire Old Testament.
17. Whatever you’ve done to the least of these (Matthew 25:40)
“Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me,” the King will respond. An inspiring story about God’s judgment depicts individuals being divided according to their assistance to those who are most vulnerable, such as hungry, sick, and imprisoned.
To everyone’s total amazement, Jesus relates so strongly with this most vulnerable of the weak that He conveys that by helping them, we are truly serving Him. Those who refused care for the poor will be judged for withholding it from Jesus, who will be judged for it.
18. Serving those who cannot repay (Luke 14:12–14)
“”When you throw a luncheon or supper, do not invite your friends, your brothers and sisters, relatives, or wealthy neighbors; if you do invite them, they may welcome you again, and you will be reimbursed,” Jesus instructed his host. Invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and the lame and blind will be present at your dinner, and you will be blessed. You shall be reimbursed at the resurrection of the righteous despite the fact that they are unable to repay you.” It’s totally normal to do pleasant things for the people you care about or for those who may be able to reciprocate your kindness.
The beauty of this chapter is that He isn’t only asking His disciples to give them money or food; He is also asking them to pray for them.
Rather than simply celebrating them, Jesus is urging us to go the extra mile to involve them and to provide them with an evening they will not soon forget.
It’s one thing to make people on the outside feel welcome; it’s another to go out of your way to make them feel welcome.
19. Do not discriminate against the poor (James 2:2–4)
“Consider the following scenario: a wealthy gentleman enters your meeting sporting a gold ring and nice attire, and a poor man in dirty old clothes also enters. So, if you pay special attention to the man who is dressed well and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but tell the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor at my feet,” aren’t you discriminating among yourself and turning into bad judges?” What factors contribute to a person’s worth? We shouldn’t need any other criteria than the fact that they were formed in God’s image and are worthy of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross to justify our efforts.
If a person has means, they should not be considered more deserving of respect or consideration than someone who is impoverished in God’s kingdom.
20. Responding to the needs of others (1 John 3:17–18)
“Anyone who possesses worldly goods and observes a brother or sister who is in need but shows no sympathy on them cannot claim to be filled with the love of God. Dear children, let us not love with words or speech, but rather with deeds and in the spirit of truth.” In the words of Jesus, “life does not consist in an abundance of material goods” (Luke 12:15). We should never become so engrossed in our possessions that we are unwilling to share them with others who are in need. God has the ability to divide the riches of the world fairly, yet He chooses not to do so.
That is, He blesses some in order for them to be able to feel the delight of charity. However, if we become greedy and covetous, the gifts we have received will turn into a curse on our heads. The items we withhold from people who are in need serve as a witness against ourselves.
Loving God by loving others
These are only a handful of the scripture admonitions concerning the need of helping the poor. The most important message from this story is that God is personally invested in individuals whom society tries to overlook. When we identify and react to those who are on the periphery of society—the impoverished, the outsider, the foreigner, the imprisoned—we contribute to the establishment of God’s kingdom on earth as it is in heaven, according to Jesus. God does not turn a blind eye to those who are in need.
If He cares for the humble birds of the fields, it is safe to assume that He also cares for people that He made in His image (Matthew 6:26).
Unless otherwise stated, all Scripture quotations are from the New International Version of the Bible.
5 Times Jesus Showed He Cares for the Poor
Jesus defied societal expectations in order to welcome those who had been pushed to the periphery of society. Among such persons were those who were low-income. The Bible is jam-packed with scriptures that elaborate on God’s concern for the disadvantaged. Here are five instances in which Jesus shown concern for the poor:
1. The sheep and the goats
“When the Son of Man comes in all his glory and sits on his throne before all the nations,” Jesus says in a controversial parable, “he will separate the people one from another like a shepherd separates his sheep from his goats” (Matthew 25:32 NIV). The sheep are praised for their assistance to Jesus during his hour of need. They are perplexed and inquire of Jesus as to when they cared for him. “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me,” he says, painting a dramatic image of Jesus’ deep compassion for the poor: “‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me'” (Matthew 25:40 NIV).
What you did not do for one of the least of these, I will assure you, you did not do for me” (Matthew 25:45 NIV).
2. Jesus preached the good news to the poor
If you are the Messiah, or should we be expecting someone else, John the Baptist delivered a message to Jesus while he was imprisoned. (Matthew 11:2–3; Mark 10:2–3). Instead than providing a direct response, Jesus refers to the messianic signs and marvels that he has accomplished, including: “Return to John and tell him what you have heard and seen: the blind acquire sight, the lame walk, those with leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are resurrected, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor.” ‘Blessed is the one who does not stumble because of my presence.’ (Matthew 11:4-6; Luke 11:4-6.) God’s plan for restoration through the Messiah included a provision for the impoverished as part of his overall plan.
3. The bleeding woman
In the eighth chapter of Luke, Jesus demonstrates compassion to a lady who has been impoverished due to sickness. She’s squandered everything she had on physicians who were unable to help her (Luke 8:43). Her illness had deprived her of her ability to earn a living and damaged her reputation. She touched Jesus’ garment out of despair, and he miraculously cured her. After she is healed, Jesus pauses what he is doing and brings everyone’s attention to her, allowing her the opportunity to share her miraculous healing with the rest of the congregation (Luke 8:47).
Her financial poverty was accompanied by an emotional and spiritual poverty as a result of having been declared unclean for such a long period of time.
In addition to their bodily needs, Jesus’ care for the impoverished extends to their spiritual well-being.
4. Parable of the Great Banquet
A famous Pharisee’s home is hosting a dinner party, and Jesus advises the host that when they hold banquets, they should invite the poor—people who are unable to reciprocate the favor by inviting them to a feast of their own (Luke 14:12–14). “A particular man was preparing a huge meal for which he had invited a large number of guests,” says Jesus, before telling the story of the Great Banquet. ‘Come, since everything is now ready,’ he told those who had been invited when the feast was scheduled to take place.
‘I have just purchased a field, and I need to go check it out,’ the first stated.
Please accept my apologies.” Another stated, “I recently got married, therefore I won’t be able to go.” The servant returned to his lord and informed him of the situation.
“ It was the servant who informed him that “everything you requested has been completed, but there is still room.” The lord then instructed his servant to “go out to the highways and country lanes and compel everyone to come in,” in order for his mansion to be fully occupied.
5. Blessed are you who are poor
Throughout Luke 6, Jesus declares, “Blessed are you who are poor, for the Kingdom of God is yours.” It is his promise to the impoverished that they would inherit something far better than any of the wealth this world has to offer. Luke 6:21–22 continues by stating that those who are suffering today will not suffer in the kingdom of God. When Jesus tells the story of Lazarus and the Rich Man (Luke 16:19–31), he is reiterating this lesson for us. A poor, ill man is passed by by a rich man at the city gates, and he narrates the account of this passing by in this parable.
‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you had your good things while Lazarus received his terrible things, but now he is comforted here while you are in torment,’ Abraham says to the rich man, who begs for compassion from Abraham.
(Luke 16:25, New International Version) When Jesus speaks of his kingdom, he implies that the values of the world will be flipped on their heads.
Show people what Jesus said about the poor
Jesus had a lot to say about how we treat individuals who live in poverty, as well as what God thinks about those who are poor in his teachings. Please share this piece with your church or small group in order to spark a discussion on how Christians today might follow in the footsteps of Jesus.
The Poor You Will Always Have With You—What Did Jesus Mean?
Have you ever met or worked with someone who was genuinely concerned about poverty? Is this the type of person that goes on short-term mission trips, makes charitable contributions to aid the impoverished, and appears to really think that poverty can be overcome? You could have questioned whether or not that individual was truly thinking clearly. As Jesus himself pointed out in Matthew 25, “The poor you will always have with you” (Matthew 26:11). But what exactly did Jesus intend by that? When it comes to religious verses, what is the actual meaning of the phrase “you will always have with you”?
Spending your money on it is a waste of time.
Another Point of View
Was Jesus truly implying that alleviating poverty is a pointless endeavor? Examine the paragraph in order to figure out what I mean. An alabaster container of extremely expensive perfume was brought to Jesus’ attention when he was in the home of Simon the Leper, and she lavished it on his head as he was reclined at the table. When the disciples realized what had happened, they were furious. “What is the point of this waste?” they inquired. It was possible that this perfume could have been sold for a great price and the proceeds donated to the destitute.
- She has done something very wonderful for me.
- When she put this perfume on my body, she was preparing me for burial, which is why she did it.
- —Matthew 26:6–13, New International Version What did Jesus mean when He stated, “The poor you will always have with you?” Did He indicate that His disciples shouldn’t have any concern for the destitute?
- Taking a close look at this passage in its whole provides a few interesting ideas.
1. First, “The poor you will always have with you” is only half of the sentence.
“However, you will not always have me,” says the rest of the passage. During Jesus’ direct address to the disciples, he made specific reference to their own lifetimes. It goes without saying that the disciples and all of Jesus’ followers will always have him! In reality, following His resurrection, Jesus said, “And definitely, I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (John 14:6). (Matthew 28:20). It is undeniable that when Jesus remarked, “You will not always have me,” he was predicting the fact that He would be killed the very next day.
He was surely not sentenceing the poor to a life of squalor and deprivation. However, it is also a demonstration of the truth that Jesus comes first in our life above all other people and beyond whatever “good acts” we perform, even in His name!
2. Next, it’s important to note that Jesus was quoting from Scripture.
It’s likely that His audience, the disciples, were already familiar with the verse from Deuteronomy and consequently had the rest of the verse in mind when He began to quote it. It is certain that there will always be impoverished people in the nation. As a result, I command you to be kind toward your fellow Israelites who are poor and in need in your land. —Deuteronomy 15:11 (Deuteronomy 15:11 When faced with poverty, the biblical solution is to give generously. Certainly, the continuation of poverty is not an excuse for turning a blind eye to the misery of the poor, but rather for reaching out to them with kindness.
3. We know fromJohn’s accountof this scene that Judas Iscariot was the disciple who questioned why the perfume was not sold and the proceeds given to the poor.
Judas would leave immediately following this event in order to betray Jesus. Judas was attempting to discover grounds for criticism of Jesus while also diverting attention away from a rich act of love he had performed for the Savior. Jesus was refuting the notion that any act of love for Jesus is ever in vain or in vain. He went so far as to declare it “a lovely thing!” Were we to fulfill the various mandates of Scripture to care for those in poverty, form connections with them, and devote our time to serving others, would we be surprised if He also described these actions as “a lovely thing?” A woman is seen carrying a jug.
Good News About the Poor
The really good news regarding poverty is that it is on the decline, particularly in its severe form. The transformation of communities from poverty to plenty occurs on a daily basis at Food for the Hungry, where we witness it firsthand. We think that this endeavor is a symbol of God’s Kingdom coming to earth. It’s all part of His plan for the humans He created and cherishes so much, says the Bible. In reality, poverty can be carried down from generation to generation with a horrible amount of perseverance.
The Bible is replete with promises that the poor may enjoy an abundant life today, including the ability to rise out of their plight.
What’s Your Alabaster Jar?
Exactly as Jesus promised, the lady who anointed Jesus continues to educate us to this very day. Her example pushes us to offer our absolute best to God, regardless of how others may perceive us to be doing so. God may be calling you to offer Him your very best today in some way. The Harvest is Abundant, but the Workers Are Few—Continue reading. What exactly is it about? What James 1 Teaches Us About God’s Story We’re Called to Live Out God’s Story According to What James 1 Teaches Us: Learn to Serve Like Jesus by following these steps.
Remember The Poor – What Jesus Said About The Poor
According to the Gospels, Jesus spent a significant amount of time with the impoverished, serving them, encouraging them, and even advocating for them. The long and rich Jewish biblical history of caring for people in need was being carried on by him and he felt proud of it. Deuteronomy’s comments on God’s love for those who are socially vulnerable indicate God’s tenderness toward the socially vulnerable: “He fights for the rights of the fatherless and widows, and he cares for the immigrant, providing him with food and clothes” (Deut.
- The Lord your God is giving you this country, and if among your brothers there is a poor man in any of the towns of this land, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward your poor brother.
- 15:7-8.) “There will always be impoverished people in the nation,” says the author.
- Isn’t it to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of tyranny, to set the oppressed free and to shatter every yoke?
Doesn’t it make sense to share your food with the hungry and to offer refuge for the poor traveller – when you see the naked, it seems sense to clothe them, and it makes sense to not turn away from your own flesh and blood?” (See also Isaiah 58:6-7.)
The Poor In The Gospels
Jesus invites the early Church to make a commitment to seek out the destitute and treat them with dignity as a result of these origins: After looking at his disciples, Jesus declared: “‘Blessed are the poor, for it is yours that the kingdom of God is’.” (See Luke 6:20.) Because he has anointed my preaching to bring good news to the needy, the Spirit of the Lord has descended upon me. He has entrusted me with the mission of proclaiming freedom for prisoners and sight restoration for the blind, as well as the liberation of the downtrodden” (Luke 4:18).
Despite the fact that they are unable to repay you, you will be reimbursed at the resurrection of the righteous” (Luke 14:13-14).
The Poor In The New Testament
Following in Jesus’ footsteps, the apostles and the early Church exemplify Jesus’ compassion for the poor: “All they asked was that we continue to remember the poor, which was exactly what I had been eager to do all along” (Gal. 2:10). “Give to those who are in need among God’s people. “Show a little hospitality” (Rom. 12:13). Then, my dear brothers, consider this: Hasn’t God selected those who appear to be poor in the eyes of the world, but who are wealthy in faith, to be the heirs of the kingdom that he promised to those who love him?
God our Father regards as pure and flawless religion the following: to care for orphans and widows in their misery and to refrain from being corrupted by the world” (James 1:27).
A Movement That Cares For The Poor
In the years following Jesus’ resurrection, during the early years of the Church, the Roman government struggled to care for the swaths of widows and orphans that had engulfed their nation. As a result of Jesus’ example and the realization that the poor were to be accepted in the same way that Jesus himself was received, early Christians tackled the concerns of social conflict that surrounded orphans and widows. According to some researchers, this may have been the fundamental reason why the Church spread like wildfire in its first hundred years of existence.
It is amazing what may happen when the disadvantaged and neglected of any society are brought into the heart of a loving community that worships Jesus Christ.
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What Jesus Really Said about Poverty
By John Barry, the founder and CEO of Jesus’ Economy God took on the form of a poor man, lived as a poor man, and died as a poor man in the person of Jesus. He brings good news to the underprivileged. As a result, Jesus was extremely concerned about the plight of the poor. Being True to Our Beliefs It is just as essential to Jesus as what we believe in terms of what we do with our beliefs. Jesus is about making a complete and whole commitment to love him and other people. As Jesus told a wealthy young man in Matthew 19:21, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell all you have and give to the needy, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me” (see also 19:16–30 ESV), he adores deeds motivated by faith.
- “Truly, I say to you, a rich person will have difficulties entering the kingdom of heaven!” says Jesus at this point in the story.
- Afterwards, Jesus’ followers inquire, “Then who may be saved?” Then Jesus looks them in the eyes and says, “With human beings, this is impossible; however, with God, anything is possible” (Matthew 19:25-26).
- And, in order for God to enter a person’s life, they must be willing to allow Him to do so.
- Our devotion to Jesus comes out of one side of our mouths, while our allegiance to material possessions comes out of the other side.
- Take a look at the circumstances that led up to Jesus making his comment regarding the wealthy: Then someone approached him and said, ‘Teacher, what good act must I do in order to obtain eternal life?'” I asked him, “Why are you asking me about what is good?” he responded.
- But if you want to be accepted into life, you must follow the commandments!’ ‘Which ones,’ he inquired of the man.
- ‘All of these things have been noticed by me,’ the young guy informed him.
(19:16–21; Matthew 19:16–21).
He doesn’t inquire as to how he may follow Jesus, what it means to be a disciple, or what good deed he can do for the world on God’s behalf.
Isn’t it the question that many of us are asking God right now, if we’re being completely honest with ourselves?
God’s greatest gift is eternal life (salvation), yet it is intended to be a gift that motivates people to take action.
“Which?” I inquired, when confronted with the truth of the affluent young man’s narrative.
In his response, Jesus informs the man that he is lacking in self-sacrifice for others—that he is lacking in giving to the point where it is painful for him.
Wealth is intended to be used to benefit others, plain and simple (seeGenesis 12:1-3for an example).
But instead of being afraid, fretting, or worrying, pray.
What Jesus Would Have to Say to Us Right Now Simply put, when we apply Jesus’ words today, they look like withdrawing from any relationship, occupation, event, or item that stands between you and following Jesus—providing, of course, that you may do so while still keeping the commandments—and then following Jesus.
- To join Jesus in His ministry, we must believe in it with all of our hearts and minds, just as he has.
- Possessing Jesus’ money and “owning” the problems of poverty There is a difference between the currency of Jesus’ kingdom and the currency of ours.
- For Jesus, belief and action are inseparable—you cannot have one without the other in order to be saved.
- Many of them have been spawned by our inactivity.
- But we may also join Jesus in his efforts to improve the status of our planet.
- After all, this is exactly what Christ commanded us to do.
- What good is faith if it doesn’t bring sincere hope to the table?
We are invited to lay down our lives for Him—what is it that He is calling you to lay down for Him?
It is his imagination that imagines what the world could be like, and it is his invitation to us to join God in the process of making that vision a reality.
An adapted/modified version of this article was initially published by “onfaith”/”faith street” as “Five Sayings of the Homeless Jesus,” and it has since been republished by other publications.
Jesus’ Economy, founded by John D.
A fair trade shop is available online through Jesus’ Economy, in keeping with John’s view that commerce can help people better their lives.
He is presently in charge of the Jesus’ Economy activities in Bihar, India, which is one of the world’s most destitute regions, where few people have even heard of the name of Jesus.
What did Jesus really mean when he said, “The poor you will always have with you”? — Craig Greenfield
Isn’t it true that poverty can never be overcome? It is an issue that cannot be resolved under any circumstances. Because, after all, Jesus promised, “The poor you will ALWAYS have with you.” The evidence is clearly there in the Bible. 12th chapter of John. Verse 8 is a proverbial slap in the face to the world. Consequently, sonny-boy, don’t be overly concerned with addressing poverty and injustice. It’s a lost struggle at this point. Reduce the intensity of your revolutionary rhetoric and abandon the struggle.
- Perhaps, like me, you have had the experience of receiving a symbolic pat on the back of the head.
- Well, that’s a bollocks.
- It appears to me that Jesus was promoting charity and action to remove poverty, rather than apathy expressed by raising one’s hands in the air and shrugging one’s shoulders.
- You know how certain catchphrases are simply so widely known that everyone knows the finish – you don’t even have to speak it?
- “Sticks and stones will shatter my bones, but names will never hurt me,” says the protagonist at the conclusion of the story.
- It was a happy coincidence.
The complete text of the original quotation is as follows: “If one of your brothers should become poor in any of your towns within the land that the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your hearts nor close your hands against your poor brother; rather, you shall open your hands to him and lend him sufficient to meet his need, whatever it may be,” the Bible says.
I order you as a result, “You must extend an open hand to your brother, to the destitute and the needy in your country,” says the Lord.
“Extend your hand as far as you can!” When it comes to helping the needy, the mandate to do so comes directly from the mouth of Yahweh.
The next time someone says, “The poor will always be with you,” think about this.
It is also worth noting that Jesus used the following words to admonish Judas, who had been disdainful towards a lady for pouring out her perfume on him: Not because he was concerned about the needy, but rather because he was a con artist who used to take advantage of the situation by taking what was put into the money bag and putting it in his own pocket.
The fact is, however, that this posture of generosity and open-handedness is much more consistent with the rest of Jesus’ life and teachings, beginning with the revolutionary song sung by Mary while Jesus was still in the womb: “He has filled the hungry with good things, and he has sent away the rich empty.” (See also Luke 1:53) During the feeding of the 5000, we can witness Jesus fulfilling this prophesy in action.
The identical term, “filled,” that we heard in Mary’s Sing is found in John 6:12, where we are told that the motley multitude all ate and were “full.” One small boy’s willingness to be “open-handed” towards the poor and needy resulted in the needs of 5000 hungry people being satisfied at that particular location and time.
Because people who possessed property or homes sold them from time to time and carried the money from the sales to the apostles’ feet, where it was dispersed to those who were in need.
Poverty was erased right in their own backyard.
The Kingdom of Jesus will be established in an upside-down manner.
He invites us to participate in it. Those who are downtrodden will be helped. The hungry will be provided with food. It is both your and my responsibility to be open-handed. So what are you waiting for? Get started today! Let’s get this party started!
29 Bible Verses about Helping the Poor
The Bible is replete with passages that indicate God’s compassion for those who are less fortunate than we are. Allow these passages on assisting the poor to serve as inspiration for you as you strive to live a giving life, demonstrating the same love that Christ has for us. Because Christ died for us when we were still poor and in need. Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy 15:7 (Deuteronomy Even if one of your brothers should become destitute in any of your towns located inside the country that you have been given by the Lord, your God will not harden his heart nor close his hands against his impoverished brother.
Deuteronomy 15:11 (Deuteronomy 15:11) There will never be a day when there are no impoverished people in the nation.
1 Samuel 2:8 (NIV) He exalts the downtrodden and exalts the needy from the ash heap, elevating them to the level of royalty and granting them the right to inherit a seat of dignity.
Psalm 9:18 (KJV) Because the poor and the needy will not always be forgotten, and their hopes will not be extinguished forever.
According to Psalm 35:10, all my bones will exclaim: “O Lord, who is like you, saving the poor from those who are too powerful for them, delivering the poor and needy from those who rob him?” Psalm 37:21 (NIV) The wicked borrow but do not pay back, but the virtuous are generous and give away their possessions.
- You are my savior and my deliverer; please do not let me down, O my God!
- When he is in distress, the Lord is there to deliver him; Psalm 72:12 For when he calls, he delivers the needy, the impoverished, and the one who has no one to turn to.
- Proverbs 14:31 is a verse that says Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Creator, but he who is helpful to the needy praises him by doing so himself.
- Proverbs 19:17 (NASB) Every charitable act toward the needy is a loan to the Lord, and the Lord will reward him for his good action.
- Proverbs 22:16 Whoever oppresses the poor in order to gain his own money, or who donates to the affluent, will only end up in poverty, according to the scripture.
- Isaiah 41:17 (KJV) As long as there is no water and their tongues are parched from thirst, I the Lord will provide for them; I am the God of Israel will never abandon them.
10:21 in the Gospel of Mark And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell everything you have, and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” “You lack one thing: go, sell everything you have, and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven,” Jesus said.
2 Corinthians 9:11 (New International Version) You will be enriched in every aspect, enabling you to be generous in every way, which will result in God receiving gratitude via us.
Paul writes in Ephesians 4:28 that No longer should thieves steal, but rather should they labor, doing honest work with their own hands, so that they may have something to give to those in need.
2:5 (James 2:5) Listen, my beloved brothers, hasn’t God chosen those who are poor in this world to be rich in faith and heirs to the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him?
James 2:14-17 (KJV) What good does it do, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith but does not demonstrate it through his actions?
What good does it do if a brother or sister is inadequately clothed and deprived of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” but fails to provide them with the necessities of life?
This brings us to the end of our collection of Bible verses about helping the poor among us. As you go about your daily routine, keep this list in mind and look for opportunities to demonstrate your generosity to those who are less fortunate.