“…inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these…you did it to Me” – A Very, Very Brief Defense of the Deity of Christ

While listening to Tim Keller’s Ministries of Mercy (available for free download at christianaudio.com), my ears perked up when Keller associated two passages of Scripture I had never even placed in the same category. The two passages are Matthew 25:34-36 & and Proverbs 19:17, which read:

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: 35 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; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’

[…]

‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

And

He who has pity on the poor lends to the LORD,
And He will pay back what he has given.

The Lord’s identification with the poor (i.e. the hungry, thirsty, alien, naked, sick and imprisoned) is simultaneously His self identification as YHWH, if we associate these selections of Scripture with one another. Proverbs 14:31, although not as overt in identifying YHWH with the poor, also resonates with the same theme:

He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.

There you have it :) It is YHWH God who identifies with the poor, is honored when they are shown kindness, and who judges those who fail to honor Him and, thereby, show Him contempt.

Jesus Christ is God.

-h.

p.s.

I’m still mulling over Keller’s words. With so much of mainstream Christianity focusing on “deeds not creeds” – which, I think, is just a way of masking widespread unbelief in the Biblical testimony, and a guard against critical inquiry into the false doctrines that many popular evangelicals hold to – it’s hard to start thinking properly about our responsibility to show mercy to the outcast in a balanced, biblical manner.

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One thought on ““…inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these…you did it to Me” – A Very, Very Brief Defense of the Deity of Christ

  1. Heather says:

    With so much of mainstream Christianity focusing on “deeds not creeds” – which, I think, is just a way of masking widespread unbelief in the Biblical testimony, and a guard against critical inquiry into the false doctrines that many popular evangelicals hold to – it’s hard to start thinking properly about our responsibility to show mercy to the outcast in a balanced, biblical manner.

    Unless a person has had his vision enlightened by the Spirit, I believe it is not likely he (any of us) could make the symbolic connection between caring physically for people as a mirror of what Christ has done for us beggars and orphans on the spiritual level. Unfortunately, those of us who know better can also get distracted by the physical shadow-pictures.

    Even adherence to proper creeds cannot accomplish resurrection of a dead soul. Our first prayer must always be that the errant person be gifted “eyes to see and ears to hear” spiritual truth, yes?

    As an aside, I was just telling my husband last night that I noticed something interesting. It actually relates to your post topic, so I’m going to unload here :)

    The Goats:

    Then He also shall say to those on the left hand, Depart from Me, you cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels.
    … Then He shall answer them, saying, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.

    David’s post lust-adultery-murder-deception confession,

    Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. Psalm 51:4

    See the similarity concerning Who is being offended when we sin against another person?

    I was considering the fact that the risen Christ has been given dominion (as a Man) over that which Adam “lost”. Everything is His, and we are all held accountable for the way we handle His things. Thankfully, He’s merciful and has made a way by which we don’t all have to suffer His wrath for not being perfect subjects!

    Like

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