Reposted from Rooted Thinking.
In Matthew 5:42, Jesus said, “Give to the one who asks of/begs from you.” This command of Jesus is not an easy one to apply. Christ’s words are straightforward: we must respond to those who, in their poverty, ask help from us.
Life according to the principles of God’s kingdom means that we no longer live primarily to get and acquire for ourselves and our loved ones. Covetousness and greed are everywhere condemned for those who are God’s people. Generosity towards the poor is expected. The love of Jesus demands that we show compassion on the needy. No genuine Bible-believing Christian would disagree with these statements.
Maybe you have given to assist refugees fleeing from the brutalities of war, given to relieve Christians enduring life-upending and violent persecution, or helped to provide urgently needed supplies to help those who lost everything from a natural disaster. Such efforts are clearly worthy of our generosity.
These words of Jesus, however, have to do with how we respond to someone who approaches us personally: “Give to the one who asks of/begs from you.”
"One of the most defining attributes of U.S. adults’ giving, it seems, is that it is local—indeed, nearly half (48%) say this true, while just 17 percent share that their giving is global. They lean toward describing their giving as proactive (47%) and private (42%), but are largely neutral (45%) on whether their giving could be called sacrificial or convenient. " - Barna
"We asked a variety of pastors this difficult question. They all emphasized that every church situation is unique and that there is no single 'right' answer. But here’s how fellow leaders from across the country approach this issue in their own church contexts." - CToday