Our theme for this month: “Take Care of Each Other”
Our Bible verse for today: “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us work for the good of all, especially for those who belong to the household of faith.” Galatians 6:10 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Christians should take care of Christians”
First century Palestine under Roman rule was a rough place. The Romans were brutal. They ruled through fear and intimidation. The Pharisees (the religious leaders of the Jewish people), were also often cold and harsh, with long lists of rules they expected everyone to obey, and they were quick to punish anyone who didn’t. The Pharisees were the church police of their day, they were diligent rule-keepers themselves, and they were unforgiving with those who broke the rules.
Although the average Jew of that day was probably a decent and kind person, when people live in such an authoritarian environment they have to be very cautious, and they have to take the actions necessary to look out for themselves and their families. It’s not that they were necessarily mean to others, it’s just that there were harsh practical realities that had to be considered when it came to dealing with people outside of the immediate family.
The Christians though, were different. One of the hallmarks of life in the early church was how the Christians obviously loved one another and went to such lengths to care for each other. Read the early chapters of Acts and see how they cared for each other, shared with each other, fed the hungry, housed the homeless, took care of the widows and orphans, and much more. Theirs was a very different mindset, a different kind of community living than was common in that day. And the rest of the city took notice. Those Christians had something that was different, compelling, and attractive.
It was their love and care for each other that was so different and which caught the attention of everyone. That then drew multiple thousands to consider Christianity, and to come to faith in Jesus. This was one of the primary reasons the Christian faith took root and spread so quickly – it was the love and care that they demonstrated for each other.
What was true back then needs to continue to be true today. As we will learn in future devotionals, Jesus does want us to love and care for the lost and the hurting out there in the world too, but first and foremost we are to take care of each other.