John 12.7-8 cont.
7 Then Jesus said: “Leave her, so that she might keep it for the preparation of my burial.”
8 For you always have the poor with you, but you won’t always have Me with you.”
It is probably true to say that throughout the ages every society has had poor people. Jesus said that we will always have the poor with us. There may be a variety of reasons why this is so.
The causes of poverty are manifold. For some it may be the result of exploitation, for others it might be the refusal to work, or that there is no work available. Then there are those who are unable to manage their finances; some fritter away their money on pleasure or non-essential spending.
For some poverty comes through no fault of their own, whilst for others poverty comes to them, in spite of their best efforts to avoid it.
It remains a fact that no matter how wealthy a society may be, the words of Jesus are still true that we will always have the poor with us, either in our own society or throughout the whole world.
We know that most people of the world live in poverty. We are blessed to live in the developed world where a lot of poverty has been removed. Yet there is still poverty as the gap between rich and poor increases each year.
We know that there is an increasing need for Food Banks, and it is good to be thankful to God that we as a church are able to run a Food Bank, providing essential food for individuals and families.
Each society needs to work to remove poverty and to increase the numbers of people who are taken out of poverty.
In the Law that God gave to Moses we see that God has always been concerned for the poor. In Deuteronomy 15.11 God tells His people: “There will always be some among you who are poor. That is why I am commanding you to share your resources freely with the poor and with other Israelites in need” – (NLT).
It is clear that poverty will always be with us, as Jesus said, but we must always be keen to help the poor.
The point of what Jesus is saying is not that we should refuse to help the poor, but that lavish devotion to Him will mean that we will also fulfil the law of love, which is to bless others as well.