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Chapter 147

The Poor and Our Duty
Toward Them

*** Is the Lord indifferent to the condition of the poor?
“The Lord heareth the poor.” Ps. 69:33. See also Ps. 72:12.

*** What was our Saviour’s attitude toward the poor?
“He hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor.” Luke 4:18. “Whensoever ye will ye may do them good.” Mark 14:7. Read also Acts 20:35.

*** What promises are made to those who consider the poor?
“Blessed is he that considereth the poor: the Lord will
deliver him in the time of trouble. The Lord will preserve him, and keep him alive; and he shall be blessed upon the earth: and thou wilt not deliver him unto the will of his enemies. The Lord will strengthen him upon the bed of languishing: thou wilt make all his bed in his sickness.” Ps. 41:1-3.

*** When one gives to the poor, how does the Lord consider the act?
“He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the Lord: and that which he hath given will He pay him again.” Prov. 19:17.

*** Will the Lord bear in mind His promise to repay these acts of kindness?
“For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love, which ye have showed toward His name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.” Heb. 6:10.

*** If one turns a deaf ear to the pressing cry of those in need, how will the Lord regard him?
“Whoso stoppeth his ears at the cry of the poor, he also shall cry himself, but shall not be heard.” Prov. 21:13.

*** Who are specially mentioned as those who should be cared for?
“Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed,
judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.” Isa. 1:17.

*** How is such a work designated in the New Testament?
“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father
is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” James 1:27.

*** What kind of a fast would God have His people hold?

*** “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? ...Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?” Isa. 58:6, 7.

*** What promise is for those who do this work?
“Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and He shall say, Here I am.” Isa. 58:9.

*** Will such have darkness and discouragements?
“And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday.” Isa. 58:10.

*** And what may he be sure of?
“And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy
thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.” Isa. 58:11.

*** In view of the promises to those who carry out these things, whose example ought all to follow?
“I was a father to the poor; and the cause which I knew not I searched out.” Job 29:16.

*** What did the Saviour enjoin upon the rich young man, that he might have treasure in heaven?
“Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven; and come and follow Me.” Matt. 19:21.

*** What will the Saviour say to the saints when the time comes for them to inherit the kingdom?
“For I was an hungered, and ye gave Me meat; 1 was thirsty and ye gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and ye took Me in; naked, and ye clothed Me; I was sick, and ye visited Me; I was in prison, and ye came unto Me.
Matt. 25:35, 36.

*** When the righteous shall ask in surprise when they performed these good deeds, what will the Saviour say unto them?
“And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, In as much as ye have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren, ye have done it unto Me.” Matt. 25:40.

*** Is it true, then, that if we neglect a poor saint in any degree, we thus neglect the Saviour?
“Then shall He answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, In as much as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to Me.” Matt. 25:45.

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