The phrase “talk is cheap” comes to mind when I read Matt 25:34-42. You hear those who profess to have the love of Christ, but they never show it. Their talk is truly cheap.

Our world is experiencing some of the hardest economic times we’ve seen in years. Many are still without jobs, and with unemployment benefits being cut, the outlook for many seem bleak, but there is hope!

Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him (Jeremiah 17:7).

Hope is always accompanied by faith. Oxygen is necessary for fire. If you have a fire, you know that you have oxygen present. Oxygen is not sufficient for fire, thank goodness!

Many are hoping for positive change in these hard times. What if you needed help and no one helped you? What would you do if you saw someone else in need of a helping hand?

Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.

“So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him.

“And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” (Luke 10:30-36)

The wicked and godly here in these passages dwell together, in the same cities, churches, families, and cannot always be known the one from the other; such are the weaknesses of saints, such are the hypocrisies of sinners; and death takes both: but in that day, they will be parted forever.

Jesus Christ is the great Shepherd; he will shortly distinguish between those who are his, and those who are not.

All other distinctions will be done away; but the great one between saints and sinners, holy and unholy, will remain forever.

Good works done for Christ’s sake are noticed as marking the character of true believers made holy by the Spirit of Christ. It’s to be noted that those redeemed by grace show it toward others as a natural part of their new nature.

There are many governmental agencies designed to help, but with budget cuts and a growing debt, it’s high time we took an interest in our fellow man and stopped waiting for someone else to do what we can do ourselves.

Jesus said: “For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me. Then, they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’

“Then he will answer them, saying, Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me” (Matthew 25: 42-45).

People truly don’t care how much you know, until you show how much you care.

Elder Mark E. Kirkland is pastor of Temple of Faith Apostolic Ministries in Killeen.

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