Is Welfare Scriptural?
“There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your brothers and toward the poor and needy in your land.” (Deuteronomy 15:11)
The issue of welfare is very clear biblically: We are to help those in need. There may be disagreements about how much help is necessary and who should receive it, but there should be no disagreement about the necessity to feed, clothe, and shelter the poor.
Welfare for the poor is biblical and necessary. The fact that the government has assumed that function of caring for the poor does not negate our responsibility.
No one can realistically deny that the church is no longer the prime source for meeting the needs of the poor; the government is.
Nor can there be any doubt that from this base of government welfare the “great society” has grown. From this society developed many families in permanent poverty. Because of this, many Christians have developed resentment and indifference to those who really are poor.
God’s Word says there will always be needs in the world around us. The purpose is twofold: to test our commitment to obedience and to create an attitude of interdependence.
We are given clear and absolute direction about welfare in God’s Word. Fortunately, the standards for welfare also are given.
Indiscriminate welfare traps the recipients by making them dependent. Biblical welfare meets needs and always looks toward restoring individuals to positions of productivity.
How do you feel about the poor? What are you doing about it?
Daily Scripture Reading:
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