Psalms: Preparing for the judgment of God
The Judge, finding us doing His work, will be pleased with us.
35 “Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning, 36 and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks. 37 Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. Truly, I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. 38 If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and finds them awake, blessed are those servants! 39 But know this, that if the master of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have left his house to be broken into. 40 You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” Luke 12:35-40
For what actions are we to be dressed and what light are we to have trimmed and burning?
The words and actions of Jesus are our guides.
16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read. 17 And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written,
18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives
and recovering of sight to the blind,
to set at liberty those who are oppressed,
19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Luke 4:18-19
When the King comes into His kingdom as Judge, it is essential that He finds us doing the very works He came into His kingdom to do.
- To proclaim good news to the poor.
- To proclaim liberty to the captives.
- To proclaim recovery of sight to the blind.
- To set at liberty those who are oppressed.
- To proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.
For a variety of reasons, we know that every Christian is assigned ministry to the poor.
Ministry assumes relationship. Thus, every Christian must be seeking loving connectivity with people living in poverty.
2020 Poverty Guidelines for Alaska
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What do we learn from the hymns of Israel about God’s concern for the poor?
We are to always remember and extend hope to the poor.
For the needy shall not always be forgotten, and the hope of the poor shall not perish forever.
We are to recognize the many ways the poor are plundered, hear their groans and arise on their behalf, helping place them in safety.
“Because the poor are plundered, because the needy groan,
I will now arise,” says the Lord;
“I will place him in the safety for which he longs.”
We honor the plans of the poor and help them find refuge.
6 You would shame the plans of the poor,
but the Lord is his refuge.
We deliver the poor from those who are too strong for them and from those who rob them.
All my bones shall say, “O Lord, who is like you, delivering the poor from him who is too strong for him, the poor and needy from him who robs him?”
We consider the poor.
Blessed is the one who considers the poor!
We seek righteous justice for the poor.
May he judge your people with righteousness, and your poor with justice!
We defend the poor, give deliverance to the children of the needy and ask God to crush the oppressor.
May he defend the cause of the poor of the people, give deliverance to the children of the needy, and crush the oppressor!
We help the poor and needy praise God’s name.
Let not the downtrodden turn back in shame; let the poor and needy praise your name.
We give to the poor.
He has distributed freely; he has given to the poor.
We raise the poor from the dust and lift the needy from the ash heap.
He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap,
We satisfy the poor with bread.
I will abundantly bless her provisions; I will satisfy her poor with bread.
May we be prepared for the judgement of God by having His love for and actions toward the poor.