Lesson 13 -- first quarter 2010
February 28, 2010
© Copyright 2010
Why am I given this sneak peek and advance notice now?
Among whom do I live: sheep or goats?
What drives my compassion?
How aware am I of another's needs?
Am I ever allowed to ignore another's needs?
Which is my standard: doing good or not doing bad?
Which eternal destiny am I choosing?
The day comes when all those created in His likeness and image shall stand before the Creator. Nobody shall avoid that day. Nobody shall miss that encounter. When the Creator calls that time, no creature shall have the option or the ability to ignore Him. Only fools and the uninformed disregard that reality at this time.
We know God is good, gracious, righteous, just, and merciful. Today's passage underscores that -- why else would He tell us in advance by what criteria He will judge us? He has told us so that we might live by that same criteria. He wants to put us on His right hand...even more than we want to be there!
We may wish to have lived at the time when Jesus walked the planet. Not only could we have heard Him in person, we could have been among those that served Him in practical ways. Jesus still walks the planet in the bodies of His people. He takes so personally how we treat His people that He will judge us by that.
Needy people abound all around us, even in the most affluent societies. Thus God gives everyone the opportunity to take their focus off themselves and turn it toward someone whom He has equipped us to bless. This works both ways -- God will also ensure that we have around us those who will see in our need a similar opportunity.
No, of course not. Even so, most of us need to be more aware of, interested in, and compassionate toward the needy ones around us. Remember, it isn't just an obligation we have to the needy; it's an opportunity we have to serve Christ.
"But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?" (1 John 3:17).
"For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt open thine hand wide unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in thy land" (Deuteronomy 15:11).
"But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased" (Hebrews 13:16).
"For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister" (Hebrews 6:10).
"As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith" (Galatians 6:10).
"Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality" (Romans 12:13).
"And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me" (Matthew 25:40,45).
This concludes my comments based on the alternate lesson developed by Christian Light Publications. To read my comments on the passage for the International Bible Study, click here: Extravagant Love.
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