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Who are the least of these?



“And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’” (Matthew 25:40 NLT) In this passage, the least of these refers to the hungry, the thirsty, strangers, the unclothed, the sick, and those in prison. For the most part, I think we see it that way in today’s society. These people may look different than they did in Biblical times, but they are still having the same problems.
There are often campaigns to help these individuals get their needs met. We are able to serve, donate goods, support financially, and often share the gospel with these folks. However, there are too many times that we spend so much time looking for the starving tribe in South America that we look passed our sick neighbor. Or we are too busy funding a cure for rare diseases when UK Children’s Hospital could use that money to save hundreds of kids per year.
While it may seem menial when compared to world hunger, there are small things we can do every day to help the least of God’s children. Not to plagiarize the Bible, but if you see somebody out in town that is hungry, run through a drive-through and grab them something. If somebody is walking outside on a hot day, you can get a bottle of water anywhere. If you see somebody shivering as you are walking to Commonwealth Stadium in November, give them one of your five layers of clothing. There are opportunities to help the “least of these” every day, unfortunately we usually choose to ignore them.
There are definitely global needs that need to be met, don’t get me wrong. But if we are ignoring the needs in our own communities, how is that reflecting the love of Christ? We have the “least of these” all around us. In fact, I would argue that at some point or another, every person on earth falls into that category. Just take a look around.  Everyone around you needs something. How can you help them today? Think about it.


  • Stacy Bissmeyer - Louisville Spiritual Examiner 5 years ago

    So true. Keep up the good writing!!!

  • Aaron 5 years ago

    In light of the verse, I want to contest what you say about "my brothers and sisters" meaning any hungry, sick, needy person. Verses throughout the New Testament make the case that once a person begins the process of salvation, they are adopted into Christ's family--hence, brothers and sisters, those of direct relation to Christ. Romans makes a strong case for this thought. John 13:35 states that, "By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." There is a strong case for "in the family love." I think it is dangerous to frame things the way you have in the article and not mention the fact that it was family we were commanded to love first. If we abandon the concept of loving those in the family, then how effective will the Christian method be? I understand why so many people have a problem with Christianity--It can be a dysfunctional and unloving family.