Suggested Further Reading: James 2:1-17
If you do not help the one that you see has the greatest need, I am afraid the love of God dwelleth not in you. It is a duty we owe to the poor of the Lord’s flock, and we reap many advantages we should not have if we had not to remember the poor. Now, allow me to press home this obligation: why should we remember the poor? I shall not urge it upon the ground of common philanthropy and charity; that were a too mean and low way of addressing Christian men, although even they perhaps might be benefited by it. I shall urge it in another way. “Remember the poor,” because they are your Lord’s brethren. What! Do you not feel, like David, that you would do anything for Jonathan’s sake? And if he hath some poor sick son, some Mephibosheth, lame in his feet, wilt thou not seat him at thy table, or give him a maintenance, if thou canst, seeing that Jonathan’s blood is in his veins? Remember, beloved, the blood of Jesus runs in the veins of poor saints; they are his relatives, they are his friends; and if that move thee not, remember, they are thy friends too. They are thy brethren if thou art a child of God; they are allied to thee; if they are sons of God, so art thou, and they are brethren of thine. What! Let thy brother starve? If thou canst, wilt thou not relieve thy brother’s necessity, not shield him from the cold, not ward off hunger, not provide for his needs? Oh! I know thou lovest Jesus; I know thou lovest the friends of Jesus, and I know thou lovest thine own family; and, therefore, thou wilt love thy poor brethren, wilt thou not? I know thou wilt; thou wilt relieve them.