Caring for the Poor

Rev. Susan Brandt, April 2002

The theme of caring for the poor appear’s throughout the Holy scripture’s. Our God loves the poor.

Prophet Amos warn’s Isreal of its forsaking of the poor by saying “You trample on the poor and force them to give you grain. Therefore though you have built stone mansion’s you will not live in them, though you have planted lush vineyard’s ,you will not drink their wine. For I know how many are your offence’s and how great your sins. You oppress the righteous and take bribe’s and you deprive the poor of justice in the courts”.

The prophet Isaiah say’s that even though the Isreal tried to please God through religous activity what really please’s God is, “to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cord of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke.It is to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter and when you see the naked to clothe them ”
[Isaiah 58:6-7]

Isaiah continues,”If you spend yourself on behalf of the poor your light will shine in the darkness”.[Is.58:10]

We learn from the bible that God:

* provide’s for the poor [Ps.68:10] *deliver’s the poor {Ps.72:12] *secure’s justice for the poor[Ps.140:12] *hear’s the poor{Job 34:28] *show’s no partiality against the poor[Job 34:19] *protect’s the poor[Ps. 12:5] *will not forsake the poor[Is.41-17] *and give’s food to the poor[Ps.146:7]

So this is the kigdom to which we as christian’s belong.
We are to stand up on behalf of the poor.
A friend of the poor is a friend of God.

Here is a study that you may wish to undertake to examine how you are… “Caring for the Poor”

1/ Underline all phrase’s that tell’s you how God feel’s about the poor and what He doe’s for them.

JOB 34:19 JOB 34:28 PS.14:6 PS.35:10
PS.68:10 PS.72:12-14 PS.140:12 PS.146:7
IS.11:4 IS.25:4

2/ Write a paragraph summarizing what you learnt about God’s care for the poor.

3/ How do your action’s and attitude’s toward’s the poor differ from God’s?

4/ In what ways do your attitudes and actions towards the poor reflect Gods?

5/ Jot down a few idea’s about how christian’s today can fulfill each of the following command’s concerning the poor.

LEV.19:10 LEV.25:35 DT.15:11 1JN3:17-18
PS.82:3-4 Prov.31:9 JER22:3 LK.14:13

6/ How do we as the christian church discriminate against the poor?

7/ What would it look like for you and your church to treat people of every economic status equally as God does?

8/ What does God promise those who help the poor?

PROV14:21 PROV19:17 Prov22:9 PROV28:27

9/ Clearly helping and defending the poor is not an optional part of being a disciple of Jesus.
Take a few minutes to pray about your own attitudes toward and involvement with the poor in your midst.

10/ What do you sense God saying to you?