Monday, June 1, 2015

Why Do We Largely Ignore the Poor and Needy?

This question stems from my prior post "Sorry, But I Can't Stop Asking Questions."

This question is also one that many of us, including myself, do not want to deal with. It is inconvenient. It causes us at least a little guilt. We know the biblical writers said quite a bit about caring for the poor and needy, but we just wish the issue would go away. Why is this?

I believe three primary reasons exist for our general attitude. First, we've been raised in a culture that tells us to "pull ourselves up by our bootstraps." We may think of the poor as just a bunch of lazy people who need to get a job. The close relationship between the Republican Party and the church in America only perpetuates this stereotype. Second, we are busy. We just don't want to deal with it. Third, we are selfish and want to hold on to "our money."

We do well to remember passages such as Galatians 2:9-10. We read the following, "...and when James and Cephas and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given to me, they gave the right hand of fellowship to Barnabas and me, that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. Only, they asked us to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do."

We cannot ignore the poor and needy. Jesus Christ won't allow it.

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