We have been looking at the numerous ways charity was presented in scripture as a virtue we should pursue above all others.
In today’s module we shall look at other selected areas charity is mentioned and then round off with a profound parable Jesus gave us which expressly describes the central role God assigned to charity in matters of the kingdom of God.
We are to strive to be examples of believers through a demonstration of charity.
Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
We are to be sound in charity.
That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.
We are to continue in charity.
Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.
We are to abound or grow or increase in charity.
1:3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth.
Charity edifies or builds us up.
Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.
We are going to be judged based on our works of charity.
I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first.
Jesus pays attention to our works of charity.
He gave us a vivid parable in Matthew 25:31-46 that shows us clearly that God’s judgment in the kingdom of God will be based on our works of charity.
Let’s go through the scripture on this together now.
25:31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
25:32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
25:33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
25:34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
25:35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
25:36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
25:37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
25:38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
25:39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
25:42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
25:43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
25:44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
25:45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
25:46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
Do you notice the things Jesus is giving priority to in rewarding his sheep and judging the goats?
They are all works of charity.
This is why the end or goal or purpose or what the commandment seeks to achieve in us is charity coming from a pure heart (1Timothy 1:5).
This is why love expressed as charity is the fulfilling of the law (Romans 13:10).
Unfortunately today we have not made charity the core of our operations as the body of Christ.
We have not given charity the place Jesus gave it as presented to us in scripture.
None of us is left out of this.
We all need to take a look at our operations again.
Remember we all have something someone else needs and we can be charitable with them.
A fervent prayer, a word of encouragement, a gift of love, a shoulder to cry on, shelter for the homeless, the gospel preached to the unreached, a visit to the sick, a payment of a rent or school fees, provision of clothing and food to someone in need, etc.
We all have something to give!
We all have something someone else needs!
Let’s follow the way of charity as a lifestyle.
From experience, I realize many insincere people will want to unjustly or fraudulently take advantage of our charitable spirit.
We can take steps to verify their claims before making a commitment to avoid being defrauded.
The multiplication of fraudsters must not impact our will to be charitable negatively.
How awesome it will be to hear the master say
‘Come ye blessed of my father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, for I was hungry, thirsty, a stranger, naked, sick and in prison and you met my needs’.
This is our call!
May God grant us grace to walk in the way of charity as we have been instructed in Jesus name amen.
End of series.