September 8

Text: Matthew 25:35-40

“'For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.'  Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You drink?  And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You?  And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?'   And the King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'”   (NASB)

Note several things.

  1.  These people were moved to respond to basic needs, even when they could not “fix” the circumstance.  Their response was not dramatic, but it genuinely addressed need.  They also were people who encouraged—they cared and they lifted spirits even when there was nothing else they could do.

  2. Those on the right side of the King were called the righteous.  Here righteousness was a matter of behavior—not just a matter of theological systems or convictions.

  3. Those on the King’s right did not remember giving the King any of this treatment.  One gets the sense that they thought the King was mistaken, that they had no right to be receiving the gift.  What does that say about what kind of people they were?

  4. The king said, “I accepted the way you treated others as the way you would treat me.  I was moved by your concern for those who are considered unimportant.”  Thus all acts and attitudes of kindness were (are) important because people were (are) important to the King.  Thus the compassionate Jesus notes compassionate people.

Jesus was a “people man.”  Those who follow Jesus are “people persons.”  The only eternal resource we constantly contact are people.  The way we treat people is the way we treat the King.

What you know about Jesus should remake you.  Who you are is evident in how you treat people—your family, neighbor, friends, enemies, fellow workers, the person on the street, and the unfortunate.  People are not easy to help.  Neither were they for Jesus.  Nor are we.

Suggestion for reflection: What is involved in being “people persons”?  (Read 1 Thessalonians 5:14-22.)

David's Home Page Previous Day Index Next Day

 Copyright 2011 David Chadwell