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Why Love the Unlovable

Morally speaking, everyone should be loved the same, but that doesn’t mean humans will take heed of that all the time. Pride gets the best of them all too easily when they’re focusing on outward appearance and all kinds of other things they shouldn’t be. If it didn’t, the instructions of James 2 probably wouldn’t have had to be written. This chapter starts out by showing how foolish and evil it is to show favoritism to the rich. It then explains why you can’t separate faith from works and cites an example of wishing a needy person well and then not lifting a finger to meet that person’s need, when it’s in your power to do so. You can basically consider Proverbs 3:27-28 another warning against the same thing.

Unfortunately, even some that name the name of Jesus seem to have a habit of forgetting that He Himself made a choice to not only come in the flesh, but also be numbered with the poor. He was no more lovable than any other poor person, if you’re to believe Isaiah 53:2-3. So it’s no wonder why He drew that comparison in Matthew 25:31-46, where He explains what’s going to happen when He separates the sheep from the goats and seems to explain why each of them will be repaid according to what they did or didn’t do (you’ll have to spend some time thinking about this to understand how it doesn’t mean that salvation comes by works, though; it’s likely just another affirmation that faith and works can’t be separated).

So when you remember that the Son of God came in humility and not as people had expected from the coming Messiah, and that there will come a day when He’ll be the One to mete out judgment, loving the unlovable only seems right. It even makes sense when you’re reminded in the midst of your own day-to-day life what kind of world this is, where the less privileged don’t have some of the things you probably take for granted: transportation, a place to sleep indoors, running water, plenty of food, the computer, electricity, and Internet connection it took for you to get online and read this—you get the idea, right?

Maybe you’ll want to be careful about looking good on the outside anyway, or putting too much emphasis on it. That might just make you a prime candidate for being like the whitewashed tombs that Jesus described in Matthew 23:27. Furthermore, in terms of “getting religion”, there seems to be only one good way to do that, and James 1:27 speaks of it partially in terms of meeting the needs of orphans and widows. The Message Bible just calls them “the homeless and loveless”. There are plenty of homeless people in the world to go around, and they’re not just children. But there are organizations in place specifically geared toward orphaned children, and you can hardly blame them for that when statistics show that the worldwide number of them is only expected to get dramatically higher.

So if you care about making this world a better place to live in for everyone, and you have your own struggles to make ends meet in the form of paying bills (because you know what might happen otherwise), doesn’t it make a lot of sense to love the unlovable and not forget about them?