The Bible often talks about how we should treat other people with the “one another” statements running through the Gospels and letters. We may think that this is a distinctive of the church and is for our interactions within the church so let us just meditate on some of them for a moment ….
- love one another (John 13:34),
- bear with and forgive one another (Col 3:13),
- be devoted to and honour one another (Rom 12:10)
- encourage one another (2 Cor 13:11)
- live in harmony with one another (Rom 12:6)
- accept one another (Rom 15:7)
Yes it should be a distinctive of the church but not for those who come to church; we should treat everyone with care whatever, nationality, religion, able-bodied, disabled because this how people see the love of Jesus and come to glorify Him.
God has always been concerned for all people and that society should take care of all. In the first few books of the Bible we read that God had rescued the people of Israel from slavery in Egypt and despite their rebellion had brought them to the border of the land that He had promised them. Through Moses, God reaffirms his promise and instructs the people to obey His commands and not forget them. As part of that process, recorded in Deuteronomy 27, the Levites shout out curses to which the people respond in one voice “Amen”. One of the curse relates to taking advantage of the blind (v18) because of their disability and God is totally opposed to this. If you are blind then you are totally dependent on others to lead you in the right way and are, therefore, very vulnerable to them. God wants us to treat them with care.
During his time on earth Jesus came into contact with many who were blind and was able to give them sight. This weekend we are thinking about one of our partners who is seeking to give sight to children who are going blind in Bangladesh. They want to treat them with care and give them relief from their blindness and hope for the future. What a picture this is of what God can do for each one of us. In 2 Corinthians 4:4 we read “that the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ” What an opportunity for us to care for them so that we lead them, not off the road, but to Jesus who can open their eyes to behold His love and glory.
Written by Grev Parmenter, MMN Director