Matters of Faith: The Least Among Us

Matthew 25:44-46 NKJV

“Then they also will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

How many people who could use your help have you walked past this week? What is the criteria that you use to determine to whom you will show kindness? Jesus began a conversation with His disciples in the 24th chapter of Matthew to answer His disciples questions about the end times. He was seated on the Mount of Olives when they asked Him when the end was coming and what sign would indicate His return. He gave them a long explanation, telling them what they needed to be careful of, what they needed to look for, and what they could expect (read it for yourself in chapters 24-25). He uses parables leading up to His conclusion; “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.” (Matthew 25:34 NIV).

He goes on to tell them what will determine their entry into His kingdom. Twice He tells them about feeding the hungry with food and water, clothing the naked, showing hospitality, healing the sick and visiting those who are incarcerated (vv. 35-43). Anytime stories are repeated in the same selection of a scripture, it means that the issue is vitally important. Jesus made sure that His disciples knew what was expected of them. We are expected to do likewise.

Although it is faith in the life, death, burial and resurrection of Christ that saves us, Jesus shares that we have to do good to those less fortunate than ourselves. We can’t earn our salvation, but we can personify the love God has for us through our service to those who are the least among us. Those are the people who the Lord wants us to focus our time, attention and benevolence. This is very important to Jesus. Think about it; it’s the only thing He mentions. He didn’t talk about the things we do or hold near and dear in the church; it was not preaching, teaching, church work, or tithing. All of these things are important, but when He talked about entry into the Kingdom, He only spoke taking care of those who are the least among us.
The question that you must answer is, “What will you do for those who are least among us?” Choose wisely. According to Jesus, your decision will have eternal ramifications.

Be Blessed +++

Rev. J. Loren Russell is an associate minister at both Goodwill and The Greater Universal Baptist Churches in the Bronx, President/CEO of The JLR Company for Church Financial &. Strategic Consulting (718-328-8096), and hosts “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Soul 1 Radio, Mondays 8:00 – 10:00 PM. Listen by phone” at 626-226-1448. Be sure to Friend “Matters of Faith” on Facebook and email us at Order your copy of Matters of Faith: The Book at Book Blues.

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