Poor in Spirit Ezekiel through Malachi by Gabrielle, Katelyn, Samantha and Cassandra

The themes that we found throughout these books focused primarily around the point of the Poor in Spirit. We believe that the poor in Spirit circles around people who are impoverished, worldly and unloved.

Who are the Poor in Spirit?

  • The Impoverished
  • The Unfortunate/Accident Victims
  • The Worldly
  • Those With No Future
  • The Unwell
  • The Unloved
  • The Isolated

The Bible says that we have to show compassion to the Poor in Spirit. Who are those people?

The Unloved

The Worldly

The Impoverished

The Unloved

Hosea

We know that we are called to love the unloved because of the story of Hosea

Hosea 1:2 "When the Lord first began speaking to Israel through Hosea, he said to him, “Go and marry a prostitute..."

Hosea 3:1 "Then the Lord said to me, “Go and love your wife again, even though she commits adultery with another lover. This will illustrate that the Lord still loves Israel, even though the people have turned to other gods and love to worship them.” So I bought her back for fifteen pieces of silver and five bushels of barley and a measure of wine. Then I said to her, “You must live in my house for many days and stop your prostitution. During this time, you will not have sexual relations with anyone, not even with me.”

The Worldly

Lamentations, Zephaniah, Zechariah, and Ezekiel

  • Lamentations 1:17, "Zion stretched our her hands, but there is no one to comfort her. The LORD has decreed for Jacob that his neighbors become his foes; Jerusalem has become an unclean among them."
  • Lamentations 4:2, "How precious children of Zion, once worth their weight in gold, are now considered as pots as clay, the work of a potter's hands."
  • Zephaniah 1 discusses God coming down and taking away idols
  • Zephaniah means treasured by God and protected

Ezekiel 25:15-17, "This is what the Sovereign Lord says: "Because the Philistines acted in vengeance and took revenge with malice in their hearts, and with ancient hostility sought to destroy Judah, therefore this is what the sovereign Lord says: I am to stretch out my hand against the Philistines, and I will wipe out the Kerethites and destroy those remaining along the coast. I will carry out the great vengeance on them and punish them in my wrath. They they will know that I am the Lord, when I take vengeance on them."

Zephaniah 1:18 "Neither their silver nor their gold will be able to save them on the day of the LORD's wrath." In the fire of his jealousy the whole earth will be consumed, for he will make a sudden end of all who live on the earth."

The Impoverished

Joel

In Joel we see situations where everything is stripped away from the people. Things become difficult and it does not reflect back to be their wrongdoings or mishaps that caused them to get to that place. Their food, relationships, and joy are stripped away. There are always impoverished people in the world, it is more how we respond that matters most.

Joel 1:7,9-12

Joel 2:18-27

As a Christian and as a Social Worker we have the responsibility to care for those in need, to provide in a means that we see as possible. We have the resources to help provide healing and restoration of materials. The Bible gives excellent examples of what it is others need from us as they are going through difficult times. It promotes us to be an encourager, to be courageous and encourage courage, and to not let fear take authority in any situation. We are called to be like Christ, we are given His power, so lets use it!

Why are we supposed to care for them?

Ezekiel 18:5,7-9 says, "If a man is righteous and does what is just and right..does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, commits no robbery, gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment, does not lend at interest or take any profit, withholds his hand from injustice, executes true justice between man and man, walks in my statutes, and keeps my rules by acting faithfully—he is righteous; he shall surely live, declares the Lord God."

The Bible tells us that if we care for the poor in spirit, keep God's rules, and walk in his statutes, we will be seen as righteous and we will have life! It pleases God when we keep his commands. It is our job as Christians to take care of those who are impoverished, unloved, and those who are lost (the worldly).

A lot of people would agree that Christians don't belong in social work...but I would have to say that they do! Social workers exist to enable, mediate, advocate, empower, and counsel. That is also what we are called to do as Christians!

Micah 6:7-8 talks about what pleases the Lord. "Will the Lord be pleased with[a] thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?"

Christian social workers should seek justice, give mercy where it is needed, and walk humbly with our God.

What Happens If We Don't?

Ezekiel 22:29,31 says, "They have oppressed the poor and needy... Therefore I have poured out my indignation upon them."

Whenever we ignore or disobey God's commands, there will be consequences.

There are 795 million hungry people in our world. 780 million of those are in developing countries and 11 million of those are living in developed countries.

15% of Americans lived below the poverty line in 2014, and that number went up 11% from 2000.

When we ignore these people and their problems, the problems and these percentages will continue to grow.

Take Action

"Get to work, that's what we're here for"

Credits:

Created with images by Mr Moss - "The Good Book - 125/365" • Unsplash - "rainy day cityscape window" • Leroy_Skalstad - "people homeless male" • stux - "neon neon font advertisement" • blondinrikard - "Cross" • Love_Haight - "Inside Nelson w. Angela 5_24_12 2012-05-23 001" • jpeter2 - "sunset twilight abendstimmung"

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