Summary: Who are the Needy? Who should do some thing? Church as it is menat to be is a needs meeting community of saints you can also listen at www.preaching.co.nr
Church as it is meant to be, is a needs-meeting community of saints. I am sure you will immediately recall the following: “All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.” (Acts 2:45-44)
This characteristic of church as it is meant to be, is both challenging for the giver and the receiver. The giver may be too selfish to give and the receiver, too proud to accept.
Meeting Needs is Godly
As we read the Old Testament, it is so clear that God has a heart for the “needy”; “For he will deliver the “needy” who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help.” Psalm 72:12 (Ps.12:5; 37:14; 40:17; 70:5; 72:4,13; 74:21; 82:4; 107:41; 9:18; 35:10; 69:33)
The Apostles witnessed Jesus’ heart for the poor and “needy” when he reached out to the vulnerable and rejected, and when Jesus fed the many thousands of people.
So when people came to the Lord in the early church, things were as they were meant to be, and so it was normal to do what God would do and care for the poor and “needy”. “Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.” Rom.12:13 (Acts 4:35; 10:2; 20:34; 24:23; 27:3; Rom.12:8; 2 Cor.9:12; Phil. 2:25)
“Who are the “needy”?”
Is it the beggar on the street or you brother or sister in the household of God? It is both.
Being “needy” is not necessarily all about being financially poor. The “needy” lack what is essential.
What is essential, varies from generation to generation and from culture to culture and from person to person, from day to day.
For some “needy” people, it may be about money to buy food, clothes and to pay bills, bills and more bills etc. For some “needy” people, it’s their emotional and physical well being; for many people, it’s their spiritual need. In fact, in some ways we are all “needy”. So the “needy” are not all out there in the world; the “needy” are also here in the household of God.
1. The Church’s Response to the “Needy”
Should we sell all we have and give it to the poor? If you do that, then you’ll be poor and “needy” and just shift or perpetuate the problem. Perhaps we could use our blessing to help the “needy”? Perhaps we could believe to be blessed more so we can bless more needy people.
Should the Church really be that bothered about the poor? After all, Jesus said, “you’ll always have the poor but you will not always have me” (John 12:11) Should our attention therefore not be more focused on Jesus? Jesus also said, “we can help the poor at any time.” So Jesus expects that we take the opportunity to help the poor. (Mark 14:7) In fact, when we minister to the poor, we serve the Lord (Matt.25:36-38.)
Of course, the church needs to discern the “really needy,” as the Apostle Paul calls them (1 Timothy 5:3, 5, 16.) At times, we may have been taken advantage of, but the seed of God’s love through the church has been sown.
The “Needy” need Action
Sometimes people are good at giving advice to the “needy” but doing nothing to help.
Action is Evidence of Faith