The Grinch

My brethren, do not hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with partiality. For if there should come into your assembly a man with gold rings, in fine apparel, and there should also come in a poor man in filthy clothes, and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say to him, “You sit here in a good place,” and say to the poor man, “You stand there,” or, “Sit here at my footstool,” have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts? Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him? But you have dishonored the poor man. Do not the rich oppress you and drag you into the courts? Do they not blaspheme that noble name by which you are called? If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you do well; but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors. – James 2:1-9.

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the LORD has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound. – Isaiah 61:1.

The president of a homeowners’ association in the Chicago suburb of Oak Brook does not like having poor people around. His home is in a gated community so you would assume that would prevent most poor people from being able to knock on his door. However, that is not enough for Constantine “Connie” Xinos, he was concerned that a home for the elderly nearby would result in more poor people being in Oak Brook, so he was able to block the permit the home needed. Xinos says, “I don’t want to live next to poor people. I don’t want poor people in my town.” Xinos has not stopped and continues to try to keep the poor out of his town. His current campaign is to try to close the local library which he apparently believes brings poor kids into Oak Brook. The librarians are now trying to unionize to protect their jobs and Xinos has told them to “stop whining.”

It sounds like the Grinch is alive and well and he would probably steal Christmas too if he could. (Grinch is defined by as “a person or thing that spoils or dampens the pleasure of others.”)

Thankfully, our God is not a respecter of persons as Peter says in Acts 10:34-35, “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.” When Jesus says in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,” He did not say God so loved the rich people in the world, or God so loved the property owners in the world, or God so loved the Jewish people, or white people, or black people, or any other special select group of people. Jesus died so that all peoples could have a Savior if they would believe in Him.

Knowing that our Lord loves all people equally should we not follow His example? Jesus died for those who were at the time His enemies (Romans 5:8). Instead of being a grinch, love others according to the “royal law” and “love your neighbor as yourself.”

(Are you a Grinch? Do you know someone who is a Grinch?)

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