31 “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne.
32 All the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats;
33 and He will put the sheep on His right, and the goats on the left. 34 “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
35 For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;
36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’
37 Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink?
38 And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You?
39 When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’
40 The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’
41 “Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels;
42 for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink;
43 I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’
44 Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’
45 Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’
46 These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Think of individuals you have known or met that have served overseas in missions. What comes to mind when you think of these individuals?
It is likely that one of the things that stood out to you was the love they exhibited toward the people they sought to reach with the gospel. These individuals are often known for loving the needy, whether that need is physical or spiritual.
The truth is, we are all called to love the needy around us. How seriously do you take the responsibility God has placed on you to care for others? You may not ever serve as a missionary overseas, but that doesn’t make your role as a follower of Christ any less important. God has placed you where you are for a specific purpose. He wants to use you to make a difference as you meet the needs of those around you.
The words of Jesus in this passage are extremely clear that if we do not care for those in need around us, we are not truly loving and following Him.
- What is your disposition toward the needy around you?
- Based on this passage, what steps do you need to take to move toward loving the needy around you more?
- Ask God to help you serve others because of your love for Him. Ask Him to make the needs of those around you so obvious that you are compelled to action. Pray for help in discovering the joy and glory of His kingdom through caring for others.