In the Torah, God set out a simple way to check the moral health of a nation. How does a nation treat its fatherless, widows and aliens? How many are there? Are their basic needs met? Are they treated fairly?
When believers step up to help the orphans, widows (single moms) and refugees living in their nations, Moses declares they are imitating their Father in heaven. He “defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the alien, giving him food and clothing.” Deuteronomy 10.18. If anyone dares mistreat or withhold justice from these distressed ones, God promises to step in Himself and judge their oppressors. Malachi 3.5. (Also James 1.27 and Mark 12.29-41)
The Communists brushed aside the fatherless, then stacked them in institutional warehouses they called “orphanages”. I was not surprised that one of the first actions churches in the region took to restore the health of their communities was to find ways to love the children the Soviets discarded.
Jesus taught that the heart of the law is to love God and our neighbor. After we take the first step of obedience and believe in His Son, the next step is to love our neighbor. Our brothers and sisters are educating foster children, introducing orphans to the gospel in summer camps and feeding and clothing the children of strangers like the “Roma” or even the children homeless after conflicts in Africa.
How are we doing?