Big Idea: The poor will always be among us. Jesus’s second command is that we should love our neighbour as ourselves. We live in a wealthy community and our obligation before God is to care for the poor
Scripture: “If among you, one of your brothers should become poor, in any of your towns within your land that the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart or shut your hand against your poor brother, but you shall open your hand to him and lend him sufficient for his need, whatever it may be. Take care lest there be an unworthy thought in your heart and you say, ‘The seventh year, the year of release is near,’ and your eye look grudgingly on your poor brother, and you give him nothing, and he cry to the Lord against you, and you be guilty of sin. You shall give to him freely, and your heart shall not be grudging when you give to him, because for this the Lord your God will bless you in all your work and in all that you undertake. For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land. Deuteronomy 15:7-11 ESV
Solomon was inspired by the Holy Spirit to write in his Proverbs several principles regarding our obligation to help the poor.
Whoever despises his neighbour is a sinner but blessed is he who is generous to the poor. … Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honours him.
Proverbs 14:21 and 31 ESV
Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. It is better to be of a lowly spirit with the poor than to divide the spoil with the proud.
Proverbs 16:18-19 ESV
Whoever mocks the poor insults his Maker; he who is glad at calamity will not go unpunished.
Proverbs 17:5 ESV
Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.
Proverbs 19:17 ESV
Whoever closes his ear to the cry of the poor will himself call out and not be answered.
Proverbs 21:13 ESV
Whoever has a bountiful eye will be blessed, for he shares his bread with the poor.
… Whoever oppresses the poor to increase his own wealth, or gives to the rich, will only come to poverty. …. Do not rob the poor, because he is poor, or crush the afflicted at the gate, for the Lord will plead their cause and rob of life those who rob them.
Proverbs 22:9, 16, 22-23 ESV
Do not move an ancient landmark or enter the fields of the fatherless, for their Redeemer is strong; he will plead their cause against you.
|Proverbs 23:10-11 ESV
Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, “Behold, we did not know this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work? Proverbs 24:11-12 ESV
Whoever gives to the poor will not want, but he who hides his eyes will get many a curse.
Proverbs 28:27 ESV
A righteous man knows the rights of the poor; a wicked man does not understand such knowledge. Proverbs 29:7 ESV
Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy, …
She opens her hand to the poor and reaches out her hands to the needy.
Proverbs 31:9 and 20 ESV