In fact, James, Peter,and John, who were known as pillars of the church, recognized the gift God had given me, and they accepted Barnabas and me as their co-workers. They encouraged us to keep preaching to the Gentiles, while they continued their work with the Jews. Their only suggestion was that we keep on helping the poor, which I have always been eager to do. Galatians 2:9-10
The poor are everywhere, big cities, small cities, rural areas, big countries, small countries, it doesn’t matter. There are poor people and families just about everywhere you look. The problem is, there are enough people with money to help those without and yet some do and some don’t. Some people, unfortunately myself included sometimes, forget about the poor because we live ignorant to their issues. We sit around and do nothing to help. So how important is it for those of us who have been blessed to help those in their time of need? Let’s look to the words of Paul to find out.
A little background first. Paul goes back to Jerusalem, not for the approval of the apostles in this chapter, but to make sure that the Gospel that both groups were preaching were in line with each other. At the end of that time all that the apostles tell him is in the verse above. Help the poor, that’s it. He already had the Gospel message down and beyond that their main concern was to help the poor. Is that your main concern? Is it mine? Jesus talked about the poor too and His words are reiterated by Paul. He said in Matthew 25:40, “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’” We are helping Jesus when we help the poor! How awesome is that? If Jesus was in your town, wouldn’t you offer to do just about anything to help Him? Then why not do some of that for the poor in your area.
Hopefully in the coming holiday season we can remember to do what we can for the poor, but I also hope that we extend it beyond the feel-good holiday season.