Thursday, February 2, 2012

I'm not concerned about the very poor

Presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, made this comment recently. He may be aristocratically out-of-touch as some say. The context seems to shows he was trying to care. But I want to push further.

We who claim to follow Christ (we can worship Christ and have a cross necklace and not follow Jesus BTW) are to be concerned about the poor. PERIOD. The question is; are we? Actively?

God overwhelmingly sides with the poor and expects us to do so. If the plight of the poor does not find its way into our days in thought, word and action, we have missed something important. And it may be our very soul.

Listen (the NIV has "poor" mentioned 176 times.)

If anyone is poor among your fellow Israelites in any of the towns of the land the LORD your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward them. Deuteronomy 15:7

(God speaking to his people)
I hate, I despise your religious festivals;
   your assemblies are a stench to me.
Even though you bring me burnt offerings and grain offerings,
   I will not accept them.
Though you bring choice fellowship offerings,
   I will have no regard for them.
Away with the noise of your songs!
   I will not listen to the music of your harps.
But let justice roll on like a river,
   righteousness like a never-failing stream! Amos 5:21-24

The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. Luke 4:18

Listen, my dear brothers and sisters: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? But you have dishonored the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? James 2:5-6

It is not that we are to favor the poor. God suggests otherwise. We are to have equal concern for the poor as we do for ourselves or the people we revere.

Do not pervert justice; do not show partiality to the poor or favoritism to the great, but judge your neighbor fairly. Leviticus 19:5

Where are you with those who are poor? How?

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