One of many verses that Jesus spoke about the poor says: “And Jesus answered them, ‘Go and tell john what you hear and see…the poor have good news preached to them.” (Matthew 11:4-5). How are we to live our lives and love the poor? Let us look into Scripture and see what Jesus said.
The Poor Have the Good News Preached to Them
Why did Jesus speak the verse from Matthew 11above? Have you ever fasted for a long period of time, say 24 hours? If you have, then you know how desperately hungry you felt. In that moment you would eat anything to satisfy your hunger. That is how the poor receive the good news. If you go to a soup kitchen or homeless shelter, you will see joy on the homeless’s faces when they receive their food. That is why the gospel is received so well. When a poor person sees your love and your attitude of service in his/her time of need, he/she will be much more apt to listen to you tell them the Gospel of Jesus. When you live out love you can plant seeds that God can grow.
A Poor Man Who is Content Will Live Eternally in Heaven
“There was a rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate was laid a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover, even the dogs came and licked his sores. The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side.” (Luke 16:19-22a)
The poor man was content to eat the scraps off of the rich man’s table. He would have been satisfied with the scraps only. This is exactly what Jesus was trying to iterate on the Sermon on the Mount. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven.” (Matthew 5:3) Being poor in spirit means to be content in every circumstance that you face in life. When you are content, you are able to be thankful and even help others. When you look at someone who is genuinely content, you will see joy radiate out of them. That is because they are trusting God completely to provide for their needs. The Bible is issuing a call for us all to be poor in spirit. This creates dependence on God that allows Him to be the Father and for us to be his children. It creates a bond of love that keeps growing stronger as you trust in Him more and more by being content with what you have.
We are Called to Take Care of the Poor
“But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.” (Luke 14:13-14) Think about it. If God is willing to take care of His children every day, we should be willing to also take care of those who need provisions. Before Jesus paid for our sins on the cross, we were all in dire need of help. We were poor because we all stood in judgment of God’s wrath. Jesus’ death for us completely covered every single sin and took us out of God’s wrath. If Jesus can show that much love to a poor humanity, we can certainly show as much love as possible to the poor people that need help, whether it is financially, physically or emotionally.
A ministry you can help take care of the Poor today and teach Children about Jesus is Compassion International. Prayerfully consider supporting a child.
A Poor Person can Have Great Faith
“Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And He said, ‘Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” (Luke 21:1-4) This woman showed amazing faith that God would provide for her when she gave all of her money. She did not rely on herself at all. She put complete trust in God. She is an amazing role model for all of us to follow.
As you can see, there are many teachings from Jesus on the poor. We are called to help the poor. We are called to be poor in spirit. We also can see how great a person’s faith is when they are financially poor and still depend on God for sustenance. Search for ways you can help someone who is poor and see what blessings God pours out. God bless you as you live a life worthy of the calling.
Resources: The Holy Bible, English Standard Version “Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.” YouTube video “Wayfaring Stranger” performed by Selah