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You Came To Me


Carl Witty

sheep-goat“When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’” (Matthew 25:31-36)

 

“You Came to Me” is significant when we think of the meaning of our Lord’s statement in the above sentence. We invite, advertise, and personally encourage people to come to our services to be taught the truth and to worship in the simple New Testament way. There are, however, circumstances where it is impossible for certain people to come to us. This is the situation for those who are in prison. We must take the gospel to them if they are to hear it!

 

The surprise of those (both "sheep" and "goats") to whom those words were spoken by Jesus as He sat on the Mount of Olives is not unlike our surprise!  When we read these words, especially if it is our first reading, or a long time has passed since we have read them, we immediately think “When did I have these encounters with Jesus?” We soon learn the basis of God’s judgment when we get to Matthew 25:37-40: “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’”

 

The message is very clear: as we treat the most insignificant in Christ’s family, we show our service and love for Him. While the “least of these My brethren” may make us think of fellow Christians, we may safely understand it in a larger context. Jesus ministered to the poor, sick, and needy wherever He found them. Jesus identifies with the needy and suffering of the world. The things that count most with Christ are not necessarily great and public, they do not require extraordinary intelligence or skill, but do require that we show love and mercy to others. Jesus taught His disciples: “he who receives you receives Me.” (Matthew 10:40). Surely we all subscribe to the sentiment of an old song: “Christ receiveth sinful men.” We had better do the same, for we are sinners saved by the mercy and grace of God through Jesus Christ as we humbly submit to His will

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