The Bible is God’s Word to us, and there is no denying that throughout its pages, God has demonstrated His unfailing love for the poor and vulnerable. Let’s dive into five verses that show us just how much God loves the poor, and why we should too.
Where are the poor?
There will always be some in the land who are poor. That is why I am commanding you to share freely with the poor and with other Israelites in need.Deuteronomy 15:11
In this verse, Moses is telling the Israelites about how there will always be poor people around us and that we should freely share with the poor and others in need.
Why should we help the poor?
Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker, but helping the poor honors him.Proverbs 14:21
Here, King Solomon is telling the people that those who help the poor are honored by God. While we typically attribute rich people to be selfish and stingy, King Solomon was the richest person in the world at the time and even he talks about helping the poor. So, even if you aren’t the richest person in the world, giving just a little to the poor and needy can come a long way.
If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord, and He will repay you!Proverbs 19:17
In this verse, King Solomon once again emphasizes the importance of helping the poor, even going as far as to say that the Lord himself will repay you for it. So when you give to the poor, don’t think of it as simply ‘losing’ money, but as a sort of ‘investment’ that God will repay in the future.
Love must be seen in action
If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion, how can God’s love be in that person?1 John 3:17
Here John the Evangelist, says that if a person who can afford to and doesn’t share his money to his brothers or sisters. Then God’s love surely can’t be in that person. So from now on when you see a person in need but don’t help them. Ask yourselves if this is what God will want?
Instead, invite the poor, the crippled. The lame, and the blind.Luke 14:13
In the verses leading up to Luke 14:13, Jesus was teaching the people at a dinner about humility. He talked about how one should not sit in the seats of honor as if a more distinguished person arrives, you will be embarrassed. He then talks about inviting the poor, crippled, lame and the blind because God will then invite you to his table.
Here’s how we can love the poor
In the same way, how can we extend a loving hand to those around us, no matter their background, status or differences? The key is to invite! Here are some other practical ways to get started:
- Invite them to your basketball or football game! The more, the merrier.
- Treat a stranger to a meal. If you have the time, you can ask to sit with them and find out more about their lives. If not, you can get a hot meal packed and give it to them.
- Purchase a cold drink, or refreshing fruit like watermelon, on a hot day for your guards or cleaners.
- Donate to good causes helping the poor break out of poverty. It could be in funds, or even in-kind — pre-loved books, clothes and even toys.
- Volunteer with organisations doing work on the ground. Many hands make light work, and as you see the way they live, God will show you how to help.
- Pray for the poor. If you can’t give of time or resources, you can pray that the poor will be empowered to step out of poverty, that they will find hope and live abundant lives.