Our scripture this week is Matthew 25:31-45, taken today from the New International Version (NIV).
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 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, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’ “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’ “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
Jesus continues to teach us about His return and what will be expected of us. He speaks of the judgement that will take place, when God separates those who have been obedient to His commandments from those who have not. This is hard for us to hear, but the unfaithful will not enter His rest.
Jesus tells us the importance of showing our love for God by the way we treat others. When we neglect this obligation to others, we neglect our duty to God. Jesus says it is as if we didn’t take care of Him.
We can best share the love of God by using the gifts we are given to care for each other. When we are connected to one another this way, we are connected to Christ Himself. Look for a way to use the resources God has given you!
Gracious God, we sometimes forget to use Your gifts wisely and for the good of others. Help us to see the needs in our world and help meet them through Your love. Amen.