Thursday, February 20, 2014

Sheep And Goats and Others

Truthfully? I'm horrified, uhm, I always suck in my breath and my stomach swirls when I hear Christians condemning the poor on welfare and our Country's aliens (legal and otherwise) and the prisoners stuffed within our prisons and the weak.

It's just that these can-you-get-any-clearer-than-this? verses from Matthew 25 instantly shine like bright neon tubes across my mind:

 "All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 

35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.

Always, these verses shake (shake!) me. They spur me to action, to giving done by love and to keeping my critical (foolish) mouth shut. And may I never feel or speak otherwise. 

May I never settle for living my Earth life looking like a goat to Jesus.


"Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry,"   ... James 1:19

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."   ... James 1:27


Is anyone else seeing pop-ups running across my blog? A reader mentioned having that problem, but I've never noticed anything. Let me know if you have, ok? Thanks.



Terra said...

The Christians I know all are with you in caring for the hurting, the stranger, prisoners. As the Joan Baez song says "there but for fortune go you and I".

Anonymous said...

Yes! This is truly the verse I identify with the most (even though I fail)--even when I am in happy financial circumstances, it is so easy to remember when I wasn't , and want to give a helping hand to those that need it. Thank you for the timely reminder!