Humble Hero


Christ Identifies With the Poor and Suffering

This chapter is based on Matthew 25:31-46.

When the Son of Man comes ..., then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another.” In this way Christ pictured the scene of the great Judgment Day. When the nations are gathered before Him, there will be only two classes, and their eternal destiny will depend on what they have done or have neglected to do for Him in the person of the poor and suffering. HH 298.1

In that day Christ does not present before men and women the great work He has done for them in giving His life; He presents the faithful work they have done for Him. “‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’” But those whom Christ commends do not realize that they have been ministering to Him. To their perplexed inquiries He answers, “‘Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’” HH 298.2

“In all who suffer for My name,” said Jesus, “you are to recognize Me. As you would minister to Me, so you are to minister to them.” All who have been born into the heavenly family are in a special sense the brothers and sisters of our Lord. The love of Christ binds the members of His family together. “Everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.” 1 John 4:7. HH 298.3

Those whom Christ approves in the judgment may have known little of theology, but they have cherished His principles. Even among the heathen there are those who have cherished the spirit of kindness. Before the words of life had fallen on their ears, they befriended the missionaries, even at the risk of their own lives. Those who worship God ignorantly, those to whom no human ever brings the light, will not perish. Though ignorant of the written law of God, they have done the things that the law required. Their works are evidence that the Holy Spirit has touched their hearts, and God recognizes them as His children. HH 298.4

How surprised the lowly people among the nations will be to hear from the Savior’s lips, “Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me”! HH 298.5

But Christ’s love is not restricted to any class. He is the Son of man, and so He is a brother to every son and daughter of Adam. His followers are not to feel detached from the dying world around them. They are a part of the great web of humanity, family to sinners as well as to saints. Christ’s love embraces the fallen and the sinful. Every kindness we do to uplift a fallen human being is accepted as something done to Him. HH 299.1

God sends the angels of heaven to minister to those who are to be heirs of salvation. It is not yet evident who will share the inheritance of the saints in light, but angels are moving throughout the earth seeking to comfort the sorrowing, protect those in danger, and win men and women to Christ. They do not pass by even one person. God shows no partiality. HH 299.2

As you open your door to Christ’s needy, suffering ones, you are welcoming unseen angels. They bring a sacred atmosphere of joy and peace. Every act of mercy makes music in heaven. The Father on His throne counts unselfish workers among His most precious treasures. HH 299.3

Those on the left hand of Christ, those who had neglected Him in the person of the poor and suffering, were unaware of their guilt. They had been self-absorbed and did not care about others’ needs. HH 299.4

To the rich, God has given wealth so that they may relieve His suffering children, but too often they are indifferent to the needs of others. They do not understand the temptations and struggles of the poor, and mercy dies out of their hearts. The resources that God has given to bless the needy are spent in pampering their own pride and selfishness. They rob the poor of the education they should have concerning the tender care of God, for He has made ample provision for them to have the comforts of life’s necessities. They feel the poverty that pinches life, and they are often tempted to become envious and full of evil suspicions. HH 299.5