Christian Beliefs about their Responsibility to the Poor

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There are many reasons that Christians believe that they have a responsibility for the poor. One of these is the teaching and guidance of the Bible. A good Christian should follow the teachings of the Bible and listen to the guidance it offers. The word of the Evangelists and the other books that make it up should have great authority as they reveal the teachings of God through his prophets and his Son. If we are to be Christians then we should follow the way of Jesus. ?Christian? literally means ?Belonging to Christ?. There are many Gospel teaching on how Christians should help alleviate poverty, both locally and on a wider scale. One of the most important of these is the Commandment ?Love thy neighbour as thyself?. Jesus himself stated that it was the most important. ?Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it. Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."(Matthew 22:37-40). This is important as it emphasises the stance that Christians should have towards their fellow men, one of complete untainted love. If this commandment were to be kept then there would be no need for the rest as in keeping it you would not murder, nor steal or covet your neighbour?s wife. Jesus set an excellent example in both his actions and his words. The parables he used to relate some very important messages about the nature of god. A good example of this is the Parable of the lost sheep. ?See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven. What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off?? This implies that Jesus is never willing to give up on anyone who might be saved from hell. No-one is any greater than another in his eyes. As we are all part of God?s creation we are all one family in God. If we ignore the suffering of our Brothers and Sisters then we ignore God.
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