Who are the “The Least of These”?

The book of Matthew 25 is universally regarded as our instructions from Jesus Christ to take care of the least fortunate and vulnerable in our society.  In Matthew 25 Jesus makes these statements:

37 Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.

Talk to most people about this and they will all tell you of our need to take care of the poor.  I agree; that is correct, however, some in the church have taken this to the extreme such as promoting  a Marxist/Socialist ideology as does the South American-born theology known as “Liberation Theology,”  usually followed by most liberal Christians.  Followers of Liberation Theology believe that taking care of the poor is nearly 100% of what Jesus taught and is the responsibility of government.  What are most people missing here?  The earlier passage refers to vulnerable, poor people, but whom among the human family is most vulnerable? Few probably will think of the unborn.  Perhaps this because the unborn are unseen.  I will submit to you that, for sure, the unborn are vulnerable human beings and they are part of what Matthew 25 is talking about, as well as the poor.

The unborn are the most in danger of extermination in our world, much more than the poor.  In the United States alone between 1.2 and 1.5 million human unborn babies are killed each year.  In Los Angeles County alone, about 150 unborn babies are killed each day between sunrise and sunset;  they’re killed in the most gruesome way imaginable – dismembered inside their mother’s belly.  The doctor rips up the tiny infant by pulling and tearing the limbs inside the womb.  After he’s finished he counts the parts to be sure he did not leave any in.   Click here to see a short 60 second video called “Raise Your hand if You’re Against Abortion” to see what abortion looks like

Father Frank Pavone, Director of Priests for Life,  says that we will not end abortion until we see it.  Most people object vigorously when anyone shows any abortion images, why?  They choose not to know.  You can say that Mt. Everest does not exist until you’re blue in the face, but when you open your eyes it will be there, no matter how long you’ve denied it.

The Bible does not mention the unborn, but whom among us is the least of us?  Surely the unborn fit this description.  Jesus, many times in his sayings compares and contrasts.  One who is a good steward of what he’s given and one who is not, such as in the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-30.  In the former quote from Matthew 25 Jesus makes this statement of the one who is not a good steward:

Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.

I believe that those who do not protect the unborn, even though they think they are good people will be the subject of this curse; I could be wrong, but I don’t think so.  This includes those who are pro-abortion or those who support, or vote for politicians  that promote or do nothing to prevent abortion.  Edmund Burke, the famous 18th Century British statesman famously stated:  “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”


6 thoughts on “Who are the “The Least of These”?

  1. Hi Russ. Just wanted to make the comment that Obama used this same scripture (Matthew 25:37) in his address to the National Prayer Breakfast crowd the other day in reference to helping the poor (maybe you heard it). My first thought when I heard it was: “the very least of these, Mr. Obama, also applies to the innocent unborn babies in their mothers wombs that you so fervently want to see killed.” What a hypocrite!
    Wonderful blog my friend…keep up the good work!

  2. I would disagree to the extent that the unborn are addressed elsewhere in terms of do not murder. But to use this passage blatantly as an excuse to basically say that women cannot have the equal access to birth control that the Affordable Care Act will provide or to judge women who choose abortion is just as wrong. I am an advocate for the least of these specifically listed because I have disabilities, I come from a family that financially struggles and I am on SNAP to assist in getting medically necessitated food covered. But all I heard last year was that 48% comment and judgment. So I stopped voting for the party of what is more accurately “pro-birth,” since true “pro-life” would support all stages of life and not just the unborn. But I just want to share my thought on that. Not that I totally disagree, but if you only interpret it that way and advocate in that mindset, you would be wrong and just as guilty of oppressing the least of these.

    • I have to say here that I agree with some of what you say. I do not oppose abortion.

      Furthermore, not even artificial birth control is necessary for people to engage in discrimination in mating. Through all of nature, rape has been used as a strategy for reproduction by males, and refusal to mate has been used as a strategy for discrimination in reproduction by females. Frankly, I think the males have it wrong and the females have it right, as God specifically made a law against the male rape of a female and did not make a law against women saying “NO!”

  3. I don’t fully agree. Here’s why:
    No where in this passage does Jesus mention the unborn. Probably He felt that an unborn person cannot be oppressed in the manner in which He was addressing.

    Undoubtedly, abortion is murder. That has already been addressed throughout Scripture.

    As someone whom Jesus does define categorically as one of the least of these, as someone who heard the 48% comment judging the least of these, as someone who understands that we should not judge a woman who chooses abortion, as someone who supports the Affordable Care Act for a variety of biblical and theological standpoints, and as someone whom other Christians have attacked for feeling the ACA to be a good thing, I am saddened by people who blatantly use this passage solely in support of the unborn forgetting and judging those whom Jesus actually and specifically listed as the least of these.

    As much as I do not agree with abortion, if you fail to consider everyone mentioned in the passage while defending the unborn, you become just as wrong as those who outright oppress any of those Jesus mentioned.

    So while you defend the unborn (pro-birth), if you are using this passage, don’t forget to defend those specifically mentioned (pro-life).

    • Sorry, I seriously doubt that abortion is murder. Scripture does not, in fact, address the issue of abortion as murder anywhere. Nowhere is it indicated that killing a pregnant woman is also killing of her embryo or fetus as a separate person because, of course, it isn’t a separate person while it is inside and biologically connected to her body.

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