It’s with great joy and gratitude to God that I want to welcome you to the last quarter of this year. God who has preserved us up till this time, will see us through the rest of this year in the mighty name of Jesus. He has promised to perfect this year for us. Psalm 138:8. And let’s not forget, God always reserves the best for the last. In Psalm 65:11 KJV, the Bible says, “Thou crownest the year with thy goodness; and thy paths drop fatness.” Be expectant, let’s trust God to do unusual things for us and for his church as this year winds down. Our focus should be on serving God. Therefore, HONORING GOD is our theme for the month of October.
The benefits of honoring God are inestimable. Carefully read the next verse of scripture and you will agree with me: “Wherefore the Lord God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the Lord saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.” 1 Samuel 2:30 KJV. God has sworn to honor anyone that honors him and dishonor anyone that dishonors him. And this scripture is even more profoundly instructive when we understand the context of it.
God had promised the house of Eli the priest that his lineage will be priest unto Him for ever. But the sons of Eli had no regard for God nor His ways. 1 Samuel 2:12 KJV puts it this way: “Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the Lord.” This attitude of the sons of Eli toward God made God to change his mind, He said, “I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the Lord saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.” God is not used to changing his mind on issues, He said, “For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.” Malachi 3:6 KJV. Apostle Paul, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit wrote to the brethren in Rome saying, “For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.” Romans 11:29 KJV. So when we see God changing his mind about something, as believers, we should take it seriously.
The big question we should be asking is: what are the various ways we can honor or dishonor God? Showing mercy to the poor is one of the various ways you can honor the Lord. Proverbs 14:31 KJV says, “He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy on the poor.” You dishonor God when you oppress the poor. If you use your authority against the poor, you dishonor God as well. Use your position to help the poor and less privileged and never look down on anyone because he or she is poor. God will reverse whatever blessing he had promised us if we oppress the poor or treat them with disdain. Anyone therefore that wants anything good from God, should endeavor to be good to the poor and the less privileged. Our attitude toward the poor and needy would also determines where we end up in eternity. It will determine whether you will be called a sheep or a goat, whether you will be on God’s right-hand side or his left, and whether you will be called blessed or cursed:
 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.  Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:  Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.  Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee ? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee ?  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Matthew 25:33-40 KJV
It’s obvious from the above scripture that a commitment to the poor and needy is a commitment to God. When we are kind to poor people, we are kind to God. When we do good to the poor, we are being good to God. Have you been good to the poor and needy? If you have, you have cause to rejoice, but if not, you should be worried and must change your attitude to the poor and needy now. Consider from the scripture below the plight of those who would not show kindness to the poor and needy:
 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:  I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.  Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?  Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. Matthew 25:41-46 KJV.
Showing mercy and kindness to the poor and needy is required for us to enjoy the blessings of God here on earth and in eternity. We honor God kind to the poor and needy, on the other hand, we dishonor him when we oppress, disdain, or are mean to the poor and the needy.
To be continued.