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What Does The Bible Say About The Poor And Needy

Do Not Exploit The Poor In Court

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“Do not exploit the poor because they are poor and do not crush the needy in court, for the Lord will take up their case and will exact life for life.”

In God’s eyes, the court was a place where the poor could go and receive justice. If the court system is corrupt and becomes a tool the rich can use to take advantage of the impoverished, where can they go for fairness?

When the courts abuse the most vulnerable people in society, God becomes their public defenderand they will get justice.

Paul Experienced Homelessness For Many Years While Serving As An Apostle

There is no indication in Acts or his letters that Paul owned a house in Tarsus, Jerusalem, Antioch, or any other city for that matter. Like Jesus, Paul didnt see the lack of assets, possessions, and wealth as a problem. Instead, he was passionate about giving financial aid to the truly poor and needy .

The Lord Secures Justice

“I know that the Lord secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy.”

In Leviticus 25:3536, God tells the Israelites that when it comes to dealing with the poor, they need to fear Him. Throughout Scripture, God encourages His people to be generous and fair to the poor, but He reminds them that justice is coming one way or anotherand it’s much better to choose to act justly than to experience God’s justice.

You can learn more about this topic in the post 24 Informative Bible Verses about Justice.

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Proclaiming Good News To The Poor

“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.”

Jesus would eventually kick off His ministry by standing up in the synagogue and claiming these words as a prophecy about His ministry. The fact that Jesus would choose these words from the whole Old Testament should tell us just how important this mission is to Him. God’s love is demonstrated in His tender care toward those who are broken, struggling, and hurting.

Oppressing The Poor Shows Contempt For Their Maker


“Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.”

It’s critical to recognize that God takes our behavior toward the poor personally. When we’re kind to those in need, we show respect for God. After all, He is their creator and loves them, too. But we need to remember that the opposite is true. When we mistreat the poor, we disregard the Lord.

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New Testament Bible Verses About Helping The Poor

Matthew 19:21

Jesus said to him, If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven and come follow me.

This passage comes from an encounter Jesus had with arich young ruler. The big idea message isnt so much about helping the poor. Rather it is what are the personal issues that come between us God. For the rich man it was his great wealth. He couldnt let it go even to help the needy and, in the end, it cost him a special opportunity.

Luke 14:12-14

Then He also said to him who invited Him, When you give a dinner or a supper, do not ask your friends, your brothers, your relatives, nor rich neighbors, lest they also invite you back, and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the maimed, the lame the blind. And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you

Jesus is challenging our motives with this party example. We love to hang with friends or people of status. However, sometimes we do so to gain their favor, looking for something in return. Jesus says that a party invitation to the poor reveals our heart is in the right place. We are truly seeking to bless them for they literally cannot return the favor.

Galatians 2:10

They desired only that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do.

James 2:2-4

The Wickedness Of Selfishness

Scripture doesnt merely teach the praiseworthiness of helpfulness but also condemns its opposite, selfishness. This is the other side of It is more blessed to give than to receive. It is a cursed thing to act selfishly at anothers expense. God graciously warns us against walking down this path, which consumes those who take it.

Proverbs 3:27: Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act.

Proverbs 21:13: Whoever closes his ear to the cry of the poor will himself call out and not be answered.

Ephesians 4:28: Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.

Philippians 2:3-4: Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

2 Thessalonians 3:10: For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.

1 Timothy 5:8: But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

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Loving God By Loving Others

These are only a few of the scriptural admonishments about caring for the poor. The key takeaway here is that God is intimately invested in those that society tends to forget. When we recognize and respond to those on the fringes of societythe poor, the stranger, the foreigner, the imprisoned, we help bring His kingdom on earth as it is in heaven.

God doesn’t turn a blind eye towards the poor. He sees them and knows them by name. If He provides for the lowly birds of the fields, He certainly cares for those who He created in His image . For examples from the Bible, check out “5 Times Jesus Showed He Cared about the Poor” and “What Did Jesus Say About Serving the Poor?

All Scripture references quote the New International Version unless otherwise noted.

What Did Jesus Really Mean When He Said The Poor You Will Always Have With You

What Does the Bible Say About…Privilege and the Poor? – Dewey AM Worship, August 8

Poverty can never be overcome right? It’s a problem that simply can’t be solved.

After all, Jesus said, “The poor you will ALWAYS have with you.”

It’s right there in Scripture. John chapter 12. Verse 8.

So don’t get too worried about tackling poverty and injustice sonny-boy. It’s a losing battle. Tone down your revolutionary rhetoric and give up the fight.


Perhaps like me, you have experienced that metaphorical pat on the head. This verse is often used as an attempt to take the wind out of all the rest of Jesus’ commands to work for justice and to love mercy.

Well, bollocks.

I reckon Jesus actually meant the OPPOSITE of what we usually take him to mean here. It seems to me that Jesus was actually advocating generosity and action to eradicate poverty, rather than hands-up-in-the-air, shoulder-shrugging apathy.

Here’s my reasoning.

You know how some catch-phrases are just so well known, that everyone knows the ending – you don’t even really need to say it?

“Sticks and stones.”

Everyone already knows the ending, “Sticks and stones will break my bones but names will never hurt me.” Just saying Sticks and Stones is enough for you to catch my drift.

It just so happens that in saying “The poor you will always have with you,” Jesus was quoting another well-known Biblical phrase – from a well-known passage of the Jewish Torah. Everyone hearing him back then would have caught his drift. Here’s the full original quote:

So what are you waiting for? Let’s get on with it!

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The Wicked Borrow And Do Not Repay But The Righteous Give Generously

In this Bible verse about helping the poor, we learn two important lessons. The first being that God does not look favorably on those that do not pay their debts. It reminds us to always repay what we have borrowed.

The second lesson is that the Lord looks favorably on those that give generously, calling them virtuous. The Bible speaks of raising the poor from the dust and the needy from the ash. By having generosity in your heart and serving one of your brothers or sisters, you are assisting in fulfilling these Biblical revelations.

Bible Verses About Defending The Rights Of The Poor

Its clear in the Bible that one aspect of poverty is the oppression that vulnerable communities face. Time and time again, God demonstrates his justice, commanding his people to defend the oppressed. The Bible calls us to speak up. This is why FH engages leaders in the community and uses advocacy as an avenue for change. We walk with public servants in order to speak into legislation, policies, systems, and attitudes that impact global poverty. Through these relationships and influence, we seek justice and renewal in vulnerable communities. We wont stop until Gods purpose shines bright in each person we serve.

Learn to do right seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless plead the case of the widow.Isaiah 1:17

Proverbs 31:8-9Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly defend the rights of the poor and needy.

Proverbs 22:22-23Do not rob the poor, because he is poor, or crush the afflicted at the gate, for the Lord will plead their cause and rob of life those who rob them.

Jeremiah 22:3This is what the Lord says: Do what is just and right. Rescue from the hand of the oppressor the one who has been robbed. Do no wrong or violence to the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place.

Proverbs 21:13Those who shut their ears to the cries of the poor will be ignored in their own time of need.

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A Call To Social Justice In Our World Today

I know of no nation today that lives under the Old Testament Law. And yet it has much to tell us of what God expects of people, of what is pleasing to him. And central to that is the idea of social justice. We should take heed to the voices of the Old Testament prophets who called out for justice. God still cares about the weak, the orphans, widows, foreigners, and the poor. And I believe he will still hold us accountable for the way that we treat them.

I believe that the words of Proverbs 31:8-9 are just as important for us today as they were for the ancient Israelites. Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly defend the rights of the poor and needy.

And they are echoed in Galatians 6:10 where Paul says, Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

Much of the social unrest that we are experiencing in the United States now could be resolved if we would simply follow the direction in the Bible concerning social justice. To care for the poor, the weak, and the disadvantaged. And to demonstrate Gods love to all that we come into contact with.

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Blessings On Those Who Serve The Poor

What does the Bible say about giving to the poor?

Serving poor may be The Right Thing To Do but the Bible also associates it with material and spiritual reward. Here we’ll look at the benefits promised to those who serve the poor in the next section we’ll examine the consequences of not doing so.

We do find promises of reward in the Bible– to those who serve the poor. God’s making a very simple proposal here: “You help the poor, and I’ll repay it.”

Full disclosure: there’s a little bait-and-switch going on. Jesus promises treasure in heaven. In the sociology of religion game, we call this spiritualization. In plain English, it means that Jesus is asking us to go way past our comfort level in giving things away. And in not getting them back.

Who are the poor, by the way? Among our rationalizations is the feeling that the actual poor aren’t people we really have to pay attention to. They may be of different races, or not speak our language, or aren’t moral enough for us they may be illegal immigrants.

God doesn’t want to hear these excuses he specifically commands us to help the stranger, the alien, the sojourner. Jesus’ command on dinner parties couldn’t be clearer: the people you need to help are not the people like you, the people you like, the people who can repay you. As for racial prejudice, note that the first person in the gospel of John to whom Jesus clearly confesses to being the Messiah is a Samaritan Samaritans were despised by the orthodox Jews of the time.

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Obligation To Those In Need

When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap to the very edges of your field, nor shall you gather the gleanings of your harvest. You shall not strip your vineyard bare, or gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard you shall leave them for the poor and the alien: I am the LORD your God.

Through service, we give others the things they lack, and we find meaning and fulfillment to our own lives. Both the Old and New Testament writings give many examples of the importance of service and charity:

He who despises his neighbor sins, but happy is he who is gracious to the poor.

“Feed the hungry! Help those in trouble! Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you shall be as bright as day. And the Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy you with all good things, and keep you healthy too and you will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring.

And the crowds asked , “What then should we do?”In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none and whoever has food must do likewise.”

But whoever has the world’s goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?

He who gives to the poor will never want, but he who shuts his eyes will have many curses.

Help The Poor Among You

“If any of your fellow Israelites become poor and are unable to support themselves among you, help them as you would a foreigner and stranger, so they can continue to live among you. Do not take interest or any profit from them, but fear your God, so that they may continue to live among you.”

Hospitality was nonnegotiable among the Israelites. As a light to the Gentiles, and all nations, actually , the Israelites were expected to treat the sojourners among them with dignity and respect. This same level of respect was to be shown to any Israelite who became poorwhich even meant loaning money to them at no interest.

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What Does The Bible Say About Poverty

Yennifer, 6, holds her family’s bible. She lives in Guatemala.

The Bible is rich in wisdom about Gods love for people living in poverty and about our responsibility to help. We love the way Jesus showed us how to care for the poor and oppressed. Reflect on these Bible verses and pray for children, families, and communities in need. Heres what the Bible says about poverty.

What Does The Old Testament Say About Social Justice

What Does the Bible Say About Helping Others?

The cry for justice is all over the headlines in our newspapers and TV newsrooms. And this is not just a modern phenomenon. Justice, or the lack of justice, has been an issue in every society throughout history.

But just what is justice? This article will be looking at justice from a biblical viewpoint. In particular, what we find in the Old Testament.

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Cycle Of Despair In Which The Poor Are Trapped

The cycle trapping the poor in many less-developed nations

This cycle of despair often traps the poor in less-developed nations. This cycle — malnutrition lower resistance to disease often sick little energy to work less food produced not enough to eat malnutrition — is not an empty excuse. For people inextreme poverty, this cycle is simply the way life is.

“Rulers who mistreat the poor are like a hard rain that destroys the crops.” — Proverbs28:3

Top Ten poorest countries

  • Sierra Leone

If You Want To Be Perfect Go Sell Your Possessions And Give To The Poor And You Will Have Treasure In Heaven Then Come Follow Me

Sometimes it is hard to part with what we have. We feel as though we have worked hard for our possessions and find it difficult to share this with the poor and needy around us. The Bible tells us to help the needy in any way possible and this includes a call to give refuge to a poor brother and shelter from the storm.

However, in this scripture on helping the poor, we are reminded that we must not place our worth on our worldly possessions but on what is waiting for us in Heaven. If we invite the poor to share in our possessions on earth, we will have treasure in Heaven that will be greater than any on earth.

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