No “Handouts”?!

I read though some amazing and wonderful quotes from a recent Christian gathering.

The only point I took issue with in what was otherwise really solid and excellent stuff was a point made by a bro. that no nation on earth ever progressed from a handout.

With no intention to upset my friends in Germany and Japan- and with all due respect for their hard work and commitment to work and rebuild their infrastructures, economies and societies after World War II- the idea that "handouts don't work" as an absolute is obviously flawed.

Until the recent earthquake and tsunami, Japan and Germany have had consistently over many years time two of the most productive and enviable economies in the world!

Now… was there any other factor than the culture of the people that brought this about?

The Marshall Plan was agreed upon after the Second World War and these two nations that were in many key areas gutted by bombs and filled with massive graveyards prospered in large part DUE to the grace and helping hand of the U.S. and it's allies.

I have no certainty of what prompted the quote I mention above, and I'm fully aware of many verses in Proverbs and elsewhere that talk of reaping what we've sown, the biblical importance of stewardship and indeed command to "tend the garden", the virtues of hard and consistent and even excellent work. I get it!

But it's not only revisionist history, it's ignorance and perhaps even a political slant, maybe even an extreme reformed?? or Arminian theological position and/or even a provincial or racist idea that may be bubbling up when we hear statements that lead us away from being merciful to those in need.

Once again I am compelled to remind my Christian brothers and sisters who may be reading this and chomping your gums at my "liberalism" to consider the words of Jesus in Matthew 25. Study them and tell me if this doesn't sound very much like "a handout" to you?!

MT. 25
37 ???Then the righteous will answer him, ???Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you???? 40 ???The King will reply, ???Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these, you did for me.???

Later He tells others the bad news:

45 ???He will reply, ???Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.???

In another place the Lord commands His people- "Freely you have received- freely give".

Thanks for visiting… and considering! -Glenn

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