Commentary by Pastor Steven Grant
The same media that lauds Bruce Jenner for ignoring his DNA, and endorses Antifa for trying to destroy the fabric of America has now turned its sights on Christianity. When television pastor Joel Osteen delayed opening the doors of Lakewood Church in Houston to provide on-site hurricane relief, the media (and more than a few Christians) screamed. So what gives the insane, left-leaning media and the screeching globalists the right to define charity, Christian service, or pastoral leadership? Quite frankly, nothing!
It is an accepted fact that Christians have helped those around them during times of crisis. But this seems to be the only litmus test of Christianity, based on the entitled generation around us. Values like no borders, unlimited and non-discretionary giving, and bowing to the loudest voice is now the mantra being screamed from the ivory towers of culture. Meanwhile, those that scream the loudest do the least productive, real work.
In all reality, Christian charity is far more measured and restricted than most understand.. Yes, Christians give to strangers and those in need when they can. But the Apostle Paul clearly delineated the lines in Galatians 6:10. It says, “As we therefore have opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” Taking care of the family of God is top priority, and then we help others in need.
In Acts 11:27-30 Agabus the prophet foretold a drought that would hit Jerusalem. When this occurred the disciples sent relief offerings to their brothers in Christ in Judea via Paul and Barnabas. Matthew 25 tells the story of 10 virgins, but only 5 were prepared with extra oil. When they were asked by the others to share, they refused. They were told to go and purchase more oil for themselves.
This is a far different picture of kindness and giving than liberals would have us to believe. It is Scriptural. It is rooted in eternal truth. Will Christians help those in need? Absolutely. But charitable giving must be rooted in Scripture. In all reality, Joel Osteen should have prudently assessed the situation, considered the risks to life and limb. Then he should have made an announcement to the congregation. All believers that are in need should let their need be made known. The church should have provided for them first and foremost, and only then should they open their doors to those who are disconnected to Christ and the church.
Today society expects much and gives little. They may mock and curse Christ, but when the storm hits they sing a different tune. They expect the church to give to them, clothe, shelter and love them immediately. This gravy train is about to end. The golden calf of entitlement is about to come down. Therefore, it is up to the church to become wise in her charitable ministry and protect Christians first. Let the media and the left howl. They may talk, but it’s time to put up or shut up. Will Antifa, CNN and Huffington Post demonstrate the love they expect of Christianity? Probably not. The church will be expected to carry the burden once again. So let it begin with support of other believers. After all, charity begins where the Bible says it begins. It starts in the house of God, and extends to believers first.