Our Lord tells us in Matthew chapter 6 not to worry about food, clothing etc. what about those people who put their faith in God yet die of poverty?
I love this verse, yet for a host of reasons I am scared of waking up the next day!!
I have often wondered whether I may end up living on the street. Maybe I’m naïve, but even if I would lose everything - home, family, job, daily necessities - I could still praise God and thank him for being alive.
Poverty is bad, and it is an act of love to reduce poverty. But at the end of the day, we will all die. The only thing we live for is to do God’s will while we’re here. And when that is to die, so be it.
At very least the rich don’t live longer than the poor, thank God.
The verse does not say you won’t land up poor. It only indicates that God will provide and we are not to worry, but trust in Him.
I have found that having many things causes more “worry” and confinement, than being on the poor side. Perhaps an intentional level of poverty would free a lot of people from all those worries they seem to have.
Also, we do well to remember that we only have today. Tomorrow is no guarantee. All we can really do is prepare for the possibility of tomorrow, but we certainly can’t plan it. God is in control of that, not us.
Well, then why are many homeless and other poor people, including young children, that die from exposure in the winter, because they dont have proper clothing, and/or not enough to eat…many of these people also starve to death on the streets, so it would seem in these cases, God did not provide.
The Catholic Church reads scripture in context. Every passage is part of the whole, and it can never be interpreted in a way that is incompatible with the person of Jesus Christ.
Christ would never give an exhortation to deprive the poor of anything.
Here is the entire passage with some context:
Treasure in Heaven.
- “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and decay destroy, and thieves break in and steal.j
But store up treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor decay destroys, nor thieves break in and steal.
For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.k
The Light of the Body.*
“The lamp of the body is the eye. If your eye is sound, your whole body will be filled with light;
but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be in darkness. And if the light in you is darkness, how great will the darkness be.l
God and Money.
- “No one can serve two masters.m He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.
Dependence on God.*
n “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat [or drink], or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they?o
Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span?*
Why are you anxious about clothes? Learn from the way the wild flowers grow. They do not work or spin.
But I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was clothed like one of them.
- If God so clothes the grass of the field, which grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow, will he not much more provide for you, O you of little faith?
So do not worry and say, ‘What are we to eat?’ or ‘What are we to drink?’ or ‘What are we to wear?’
All these things the pagans seek. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.
But seek first the kingdom (of God) and his righteousness,* and all these things will be given you besides.
Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil.
Thats Gods fault? God did provide in others ( the rich and us regular people) and its preached over and over again to help the poor and needy - but in the pursuit of building material wealth in the world people get very angry that they might have to share a tiny bit of that wealth with the poor - being wealthy changes you and turns your heart cold to the poor and they start to blame the poor for being poor and refuse to part with even a tiny bit of their wealth - the sickness is in us - being wealthy can poison you if your not careful. To sum it up there is more than enough on this earth for everyone - unfortunately a small majority controls it and can’t stand the thought of helping others with out making a huge profit.
Simply these people are starving and homeless because of mankind not God.God has told us over and over to help these people and we ignore the message as usual because of our selfish nature we have yet to over come.
We do help but its a drop in the bucket of what we could do. Its not enough.
I understand where you are coming from. If a poor person was to follow your reasoning he would think “there’s no point in trusting in God since he did his part but the people didn’t do their job. My trust in God is in vain because I’m still going to die of poverty due to people’s selfishness”.
Yes they do.
Well, I believe the verse says GOD will provide and we should not worry, it does not say, God actually expects/ depends on other humans to provide, and really, how hard would it be for God to make an extra coat, or pair of long johns ‘materialize’ for someone struggling and or freezing to death sitting in some alley somewhere?..if no other human is doing anything, God is akin to a ‘cosigner’, he will provide. Thats my opinion anyway.
Reminds me of the old story about a guy on a sinking boat - a boat comes by driver say “need a lift” he say no God will save me - the coast guard come by in a helicopter trys to lift him off the bat and he says no thanks God will save me - he ends up drowning - get to Jesus and say why didn’t you come save me - he say I did I sent a boat and a helicopter.
Doesn’t really fit but you get the point.- action is required by the poor man and the rich man - God helps us through others.