Helping the Least of These

In Matthew 25 Jesus saysye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

Typically, when people address this passage they isolate it from its surroundings. But check out what comes right after this passage–the woman dumps perfume on Jesus’ feet.

What is the disciples’ reaction–“what a waste! This perfume could have been sold and we could have fed so many poor people with it!”

Hey, we could have helped the least of these with that!

According to another Gospel, it was Judas who lead the way with this idea. We know how he turned out. Not only was he not nice to the least of Jesus’ brethren, he betrayed Jesus. But hey, he could have sold perfume and helped one of the leasties!

Usually when we read the Matthew 25 passage about the judgment of helping others, the point is–so go help others.

But helping others isn’t the point. The unrighteous can list all manner of times they gave drinks to people, and fed and clothed others. Jesus sees them as workers of iniquity.

What gives?

What gives is whether or not you are doing this out of love for Christ our out of selfish ambition and pride.

It’s easy to judge others and self-righteously conclude how much more gooder you would have been with their stuff than they were. Just handing out stuff to poor people isn’t the point. This is where the “Social Gospel” needs to be careful.

But that’s not the point. The point is this–are you becoming like Christ?

In the end, it’ll just be you and Jesus standing there looking at each other.

Will He recognize Himself in you, or will He declare He doesn’t know you, depart?