What Kind of People Should Christians Give to Charity and Help? | Eastern Lightning
After believing in the Lord, Xinjie often read the Bible, and saw the Lord’s love for mankind. The Lord, for the sake of saving mankind, was personally incarnated and nailed to the cross, and took on the sins of all mankind with His precious blood, so we can survive until today. Xinjie was greatly encouraged, resolving to repay His love and be someone who loved Him. But what was the way to love the Lord? Once, at a sister’s home, Xinjie saw a video which was about the experiences of an old sister in San Francisco. She helped sisters and brothers, doing all she could to give charity and care to those who had difficulties; moreover, she always received those who worked for the Lord. Therefore, brothers and sisters all said the old sister was compassionate. After watching the video, Xinjie thought of the Lord’s words saying, “Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brothers, you have done it to me” (Matthew 25:40). Then she thought practicing loving the Lord meant to help brothers and sisters financially and materially, especially helping those who worked hard. As a result, every time workers came to the church, Xinjie either stuffed money into their pockets or loaded packages of agricultural products into their cars. The workers, wearing a smile and praising Xinjie for her loving heart, often laid their hands upon her to pray for her — may the Lord bestow from the top down riches on her. At such times, a big smile came to Xinjie’s face, and she felt that she had finally done something that was approved by the Lord.
The place where Xinjie lived was rich in peanuts. Once a sister from the city came to Xinjie’s home to sustain a church. Xinjie just extracted several barrels of oil from peanuts. After seeing the oil, she said: “Countryside is really much better than the city. Your cooking oil is homemade, and it’s pure. However, in the city, there’s no way to buy such pure oil.” After hearing that, Xinjie immediately took out 5 kilos of peanut oil, a bag of flour which was milled by herself, and some agricultural products and gave her. At another time, Xinjie went shopping with another sister in a supermarket and each of them chose a piece of clothing, but Xinjie insisted on paying it for her. Because she thought that she should give charity to and help brothers and sisters, and that doing in this way was practicing love for the Lord, and that the Lord must be pleased with what she did.
Not before ago, Xinjie encountered an old classmate, who was also a Christian. Not having seen in years, they chatted about their current situations when they met. Xinjie spoke of the progress of her spiritual life during this time, how she had spent for the Lord and how she had looked after brothers and sisters. She believed that she would be praised, but to her surprise, a different opinion came from her classmate, “We are willing to donate and help brothers and sisters to prepare good deeds, and our intentions are right. However, we make a donation to people, irrespective of whether they are true believers or not, and whether they need help or not, and will it conform to the will of the Lord? If not, then what we have done will not be a good deed. If this is the case, we won’t be praised by God though we have given generous donations.” After hearing what her classmate said, Xinjie frowned at once, and said unhappily, “The Lord said, ‘Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brothers, you have done it to me’(Matthew 25:40). What I did is according to the Lord’s requirement, how can it not be in line with the Lord’s will?” Her classmate said with a smile, “The words of the Lord should be carefully pondered. Only in this way can we understand the true meaning of His words. We know the second coming of the Lord in the last days will separate the wheat from the tares, the wise virginsfrom the foolish virgins, the sheep from the goats, and good servants from evil servants. The Lord said, ‘Not every one that said to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of my Father which is in heaven’ (Matthew 7:21). ‘For many be called, but few chosen’ (Matthew 20:16). ‘But the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil’ (Matthew 13:38–39). From these verses we can see: Not every believer in God is a true believer; not all deeds of believers are approved by God; not all of us can enter the kingdom of heaven. In God’s words, believers in God have been divided into true believers, fake followers, good servants and evil servants. So we should discern according to the Lord’s words: Who are true believers in God? Who are not sincere believers that are of the same sort as Satan, and are the evil-doers who have infiltrated? Therefore, we should be principled in helping others, helping the true believers, pursuers of the truth, and those who have the Holy Spirit’s work. In other words, those who obey God’s work, practice God’s words in all things and act according to His requirements, obey God’s commandments, truly sacrifice and expend for the Lord, have no personal intentions or impurity, but only pursue to obey God, love God and satisfy God are the ones we must help with a loving heart when they have difficulties. However, the following people are not the targets we should help: The fake believers who nominally believe in God, don’t pursue the truth, nor do they like to read or practice the Lord’s words, have no place for God in their heart and only pay lip service to their faith in God; the hypocritical Pharisees, serving God but raising and testifying themselves, never exalt or testify God; some families that are wealthy, and those who don’t need to help. If we help them with good intentions, it will not be after God’s heart. Only when we distinguish all kinds of people can we know how to treat them, and we’ll be clear about what kind of people we should help in accordance with the Lord’s will. As the Lord said, ‘Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brothers, you have done it to me’ (Matthew 25:40). ‘The least of these my brothers’ in the verse refers to brothers and sisters who genuinely believe in God and spend for God sincerely, rather than the false believers, false servants or evil servants. Therefore, only giving charity to brothers and sisters who truly believe in God can our deeds be after God’s will. If we help the fake believers and false servants with a loving heart, then what we have done will not satisfy God’s will, and it will not be a good deed, but an evil act.”
After hearing her old classmate’s fellowship, Xinjie found what she said was quite reasonable. She thought, “I really never thought about discerning others. I believed as long as I helped more brothers and sisters, the Lord would remember that. It seems that all my thoughts are my own notions and imaginations. I never heard such unique insights in her fellowship!”
Then Xinjie asked her classmate, “Where does this knowledge come from? Why have I never heard it before?” She said, smiling, “From a book. I used to be like you, making donations, and hosting brothers and sisters by zeal, thinking that doing this must be praised by the Lord. Afterward, I saw the following words from the book, ‘There is always a principle to God’s actions….’ ‘Since you acknowledge that you are numbered among the house of God, you ought then to bring peace of mind to God and satisfy Him in all things. In other words, you must be principled in your actions and conform to the truth in them.’ From this I knew God does things according to principles, so He requires us to handle things in a principled way and conform to the truth in our actions. Therefore, we must seek His will when we do things. Only in this way can we satisfy God’s will. For example, in dealing with others, God sees people’s essence, but we only see what’s on the surface of them. If they had external effort and outward dedication, we thought their deeds would satisfy God’s will. Now we understand that it is our conception and imagination, which is not after God’s will, and is not in accordance with the truth. Therefore, we should seek God’s intention in everything we do in the future. After I read the book, one of my erroneous viewpoint has been corrected. I finally come to know that believing in the Lord cannot only rely on enthusiasm, and that it is vital to seek the truth in everything we encounter and act according to the truth. In this way, what we do will please God.”
The more Xinjie listened, the more she was enlightened. She affirmed that her classmate’s fellowship came from the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. Xinjie would like to borrow it from her classmate, and she agreed right away.
After going home, Xinjie opened the book and saw it was all about the principles of practice in all aspects about belief in God. One of the principles was “Principles of Offering and Donation,” which was the one she urgently needed to understand. The book says, “The chosen people of God should focus their donations on helping the poverty-stricken households of those who sincerely expend for God and pursue the truth. Only this will please God and conform to God’s word. ‘Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brothers, you have done it to me’ (Mat 25:40). Donations must be made to help selected recipients. Only those good people who truly believe in God, expend for God, pursue the truth, perform their duties, do the work and win God’s acceptance are the ones really blessed by God. Only by donating to those favored by God, blessed by God and accompanied by the work of the Holy Spirit, will God be pleased. If donations are made to those who do not have the work of the Holy Spirit and never practice the truth, to false leaders and false workers who disrupt and disturb God’s work, and to wicked people who disturb church life, it will not be commemorated by God at all but detested by God instead. Good deeds must be done in a way that pleases God in order to be well accepted and commemorated by God. This is the principle of truth that God’s chosen people must understand. Those who don’t understand the truth but want to donate to help others should seek direction and guidance from those who understand the truth. This is necessary because it can help avoid making mistakes and going astray. Only good deeds well accepted by God are good deeds. God does not recognize any good deeds that contradict His intention. Therefore, one should understand God’s intention when preparing good deeds, and the key is to select the right recipients.” “To be in line with God’s intention when preparing good deeds, one must first discern whether the recipients are right or wrong. If your good deeds are done to the false leaders, antichrists or evildoers, then you are doing bad deeds instead of good deeds because you are helping the nefarious culprits who resist God. Aren’t you aiding and abetting a tyrant? When preparing good deeds and making compassionate donations in the last days, one must understand the truth, grasp God’s will, and grasp the principles of practice in order to be blessed by God. This is what God’s chosen people must be clear about. Don’t be a confused person who is deceived and exploited by others. If one intends to do good but ends up doing evil, it is not worth it. He is someone who does good blindly.”
After reading these words, Xinjie better understood that donating and helping others should be demonstrated according to principle. She also knew: If we help people who have performed all kinds of wicked deeds, what we do will oppose God and it will do evil. Xinjie thought of the sister who lived in the city: She was very rich, but she liked to ask brothers and sisters for something wherever she went. No matter how many things they gave her, she never refused. She was as greedy as an unbeliever. From this, it could be seen that she worked for the Lord so as not to love Him but to get the wages. Xinjie thought: It is against God’s will to give charity to her. Besides, some believers are nominal believers, and they never practice the Lord’s words. If I help these people, it also will not be after the Lord’s will. Thanks God for arranging my classmate to fellowship about the “Principles of Offering and Donation,” otherwise I will go on helping them by zeal. Resisting God, I don’t know. In the future, I should help others according to the God’s words.
Xinjie reflected on herself according to the principle. The more she pondered, the more she understood them. She felt her relationship with God was much closer. She saw that the book tells people all aspects of principles in the life. When she acted according to the principles in the book, her relationship with God became more and more normal and she made obvious progress with her life after a period of time.
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