“At the end of every three years you shall bring out all the tithe of your produce in the same year and lay it up within your towns. And the Levite, because he has no portion or inheritance with you, and the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow, who are within your towns, shall come and eat and be filled, that the Lord your God may bless you in all the work of your hands that you do.” (Deuteronomy 14:28–29, ESV)

This is referring to a second tithe that God commanded for the Israelites which was to be used to support the Levites–they had no land because their purpose was to serve the Lord–and the stranger/sojourner, orphans and widows.  Obedience to this command was met with the promise that God himself would bless their labors and make them prosper.

We see here God’s heart of compassion for the weakest and most vulnerable in society.  We know that supporting widows and orphans and strangers/foreigners did not stop in the New Testament, it was just as important to followers of Christ as it was to Jews under the Old Covenant.  There are many things in the Bible that are difficult to understand and not particularly clear; this, however, is not one of them.  We know with absolute certainty that if we are to call ourselves followers of Christ, then we have the duty and privilege to minister to the most vulnerable members of our society.  We start with those in the church around us who need help, but then look outward to those in society who need help. This honors God.

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