The Christian Way: A Time for Posterity, a Time to Share

Submitted by Charles Knighton
...kind of philanthropy most practice is little more than the sharing of leftovers...

…kind of philanthropy most practice is little more than the sharing of leftovers…

“Durant pleaded with individuals to reach out to those in need, and to those who are vulnerable and/or elderly. He said that outreach is an act of mercy, compassion, love and care and that Barbadians need to return this nation to the village way.” “Give; be your brother’s keeper” Aug. 27 Advocate, page 9

For some time articles in both sections of the press have implored Barbadians to emulate the good Samaritan of Bible lore. I have always been struck by the selfish attitude of many in the middle and upper class, many of whom can trace their present condition to some extent to the largesse of government, their communities or their friends and neighbours. Alas, the concept of giving back seems as foreign as does the concept of proper attire and proper decorum during Crop Over.

Utilitarian philosophy demands that the better off give away almost all their wealth, since the loss of well-being for one person who gives up a high-earning lifestyle is far outweighed by the gains of those who could move from extreme poverty to minimal comfort. While I am sure such a philosophy strikes most of us as excessively severe, it is no more than is commanded by the founder of the religion that is the moral basis of western society, who told those with two cloaks to keep just one and give the other to those who have none.

The most common rebuttal to this is to say that  we actually help others better by looking after ourselves first, like a Bill Gates, leaving a huge legacy or making large donations in later life. But this is a justification for an ascetic, high-earning life, not the comfortable existence enjoyed by the Barbadian middle class.

Another objection is that just giving away money isn’t a very good way of helping people. But that is simply an argument for using wealth more smartly for altruistic ends, by, say, using it to fund a shelter for battered women or for the homeless.

Of course, utilitarians  could be wrong. What they see as strictly obligatory others would claim is noble and to be encouraged, but morally optional. Nonetheless, their arguments draw attention to the fact that the kind of philanthropy most practice is little more than the sharing of leftovers, not something that requires us to give up anything we value. Much like the rich man in the Gospels, on being told just what is required to help others, we are likely to turn away sorrowful, for on any fair measure, the vast majority of Barbadians have great possessions.

13 thoughts on “The Christian Way: A Time for Posterity, a Time to Share


  1. it doesn’t take much to give ,compassion should propel us all to give, my philosphy about giving is the more a person gives themore of an inheritance one will leave behind for the children and their children to enjoy, the churches teaching on giving has fallen short and has not resonate with people their message is one of selfhiness and greed and only applies on sunday in the giving of offerings anf tithes.


  2. Giving away ones wealth to the poor, will NOT earn* the ‘Gift’ of Eternal Life.

    Jesus Interviews the Rich Young Ruler!
    cf. Matt. 19:16-22

    If a wealthy man came up to you and asked you how to get to heaven, what would you tell him? This very thing happened to Jesus and His response to this young man has been a puzzle to many Bible students for years.1 In this story we hear Jesus describing how to obtain eternal life by sharing three issues we must understand followed by one basic response.

    2 In this passage we see: the Young Man’s Desperate Question; the Lord’s Unexpected Answer; the Lord’s Unqualified Call to Surrender; and the Man’s Sorrowful Rejection of Eternal Life. First we see…

    The Young Man’s Desperate Question
    Matthew 19:16 And behold, one came and said unto Him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?

    Matthew calls him a “young man” and adds that he had “great possessions.” (vs. 22) So he was a young man who was rich. Luke’s Gospel describes him as a “certain ruler” which probably refers to a ruler of a Jewish synagogue. So this young man was a wealthy ruler of a synagogue, who came to Jesus asking about eternal life. In the Greek text the second adjective “good” is omitted. In working with manuscripts evidently the adjective “good” was placed in the Matthew text, to reflect agreement with Mark and Luke’s Gospel.3 The question was clear as he asked what he needed to do to get to heaven or to obtain eternal life or to enter the kingdom of God. It was a salvation question, posed by a sincere seeker. Mark 10:17 adds he came “running,” suggesting his desperation and “kneeled to Him” suggesting his humility. This leads us to…

    The Lord’s Unexpected Answer
    Matthew 19:17…Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is, God; but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

    Jesus was forcing the rich young ruler to advance in his thinking and recognize who Jesus really was. Jewish rabbis taught that God alone was the perfectly good being. So this is Christ’s way of adjusting the man’s thinking from considering Him as only a great teacher, to God in the flesh, which is a prerequisite understanding for salvation. Fundamental to what man must do to obtain salvation, is the acceptance that Jesus is God. The Person of Christ is essential to understand, at least in respect to His deity.

    But did you notice Jesus’ answer? “If you want eternal life, keep the commandments!” What the Lord has done is establish by His question that God is infinitely good, so the answer about eternal life with God follows, i.e., you must be perfect also; you must be obedient in keeping the entire will of God; you must not sin or break any of the law of God; you must keep the commandments.4 Jesus was forcing the man to understand not only who He was, but what God expects, i.e., full compliance, not partial obedience, to the whole law! Then the young ruler asks, “Which?” This is an honest question, because the Jews had distilled the entire law down to 613 commandments: 365 commandments were negative and 248 were positive. And they had even categorized those 613 commandments into greater and lesser laws. But the Lord didn’t let the rich young ruler off the hook by watering down the man’s obligation.

    Matthew 19:18-20 Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Honor thy father and thy mother; and Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. The young man saith unto Him, All these things have I kept from my youth up. What lack I yet?

    The Lord slammed him up against the divine standard! Jesus quotes the last five of the ten commandments, replacing the 10th commandment about covetousness with the commandment of Leviticus 19:18 to “love thy neighbor as thyself.” The reason is, that Leviticus 19:18 is a summary statement of the last half of the 10 commandments. If you were to take the last 6 commandments and summarize them into one basic law, it would be: “love thy neighbor as thyself!” Another observation may suggest the heart of the rich young ruler’s sin, i.e., the commandment to honor father and mother, is out of place. This would call attention to it, suggesting that the young man evidently had not fulfilled this commandment as he should. Unfortunately, the young man, like many Jews during that day, had a superficial understanding of the law and thought he had kept the commandments. His question, “What lack I yet?” was sincere, but illustrated his heart knew nothing of his own sinfulness and need for God’s mercy and grace. The man’s statement manifested his low view of the nature of God; a high view of his own accomplishments; and an inadequate view of his desperate lostness, because of his denial of the reality of his sinfulness!5 Mark’s gospel records that at this point, “Jesus, beholding him, loved him .”6 The conversation then turn toward…

    The Lord’s Unqualified Call to Surrender
    Matthew 19:21 …If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell what thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven; and come and follow me.

    Obviously, the Lord was pointing out the one issue of this man’s lack of commitment, i.e., his wealth. And without this unreserved commitment to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, this man could not have eternal life! This isn’t to teach that salvation is earned by a human works of benevolence or philanthropy. This is to inform the rich young ruler that eternal life comes by a committed faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. When someone trusts the Lord Jesus for salvation, although a full understanding of all the implications of a full surrender to His Lordship is impossible, yet the concept of an unqualified obedience must exist. As in the case with the rich ruler, if anything is held back from His Lordship then the person is not really trusting Christ and cannot have eternal life. Lordship suggests surrender of the will to the Master. But unfortunately we read of…

    The Man’s Sorrowful Rejection of Eternal Life
    Matthew 19:22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful; for he had great possessions.

    The man did not confess his guilt before God and would not submit to the Lordship of Christ, because of his wealth. cf. 1 Tim. 6:9; Luke 14:33. Salvation is only for those who are willing to forsake everything. William Barclay concludes with an insightful summary.

    His tragedy was that he loved things more than he loved people; and he loved himself more than he loved others. Any man who puts things before people and self before others, must turn his back on Jesus Christ.7

    In summary, although the rich young ruler came desperately asking about eternal life, because Jesus taught it involved complete obedience to the moral law and an unqualified surrender to His Lordship, the man sorrowfully rejected Christ’s answer. Jesus surfaced the man’s sin and the man’s lack of full commitment.

    Main Idea: Obtaining eternal life requires: a clear perception that Jesus is God; a clear understanding of what God requires, the perfect keeping of His law; hence, an honest evaluation of our inability to do that. These are prerequisite to the exercise of personal faith, which consists of turning from our sin and surrendering our lives to the unqualified Lordship of Jesus Christ!


  3. I understand from someone who was at the David Durant’s service that the Reverend is being terribly misquoted in the above article……….it is said that most of what was said can be attributed to the minister Steve Blackett………you people need to stop.


  4. This service was last Sunday, that is why politicians should not be allowed to spread poison in certain environments. The person who was present taped the service and played it for me.


  5. So what is your point Zoe. the first order of business for the old chirch was tithes and offerings whichbwere to be distributed among the opoor. Jesus was adamant and prosecutional in condeming the church actions for not going out about the purpose of doing the work of God and serving the people..as a matter of fact Jesus was the architect and builder through miracles and parables for performing goods deeds showing such deeds as a journey which one must take to have Eternal Life


  6. Well Well what the france are you speaking about? Whether it was said by the Reverend or Steve Blackett or so and so, it is all about how these holier than thou people always asking people to help their brothers and sisters. Giving money alone does not cut it without sacrificing something. Why don’t you read the article properly? If you did you have a serious bout of CDD ( comprehension deficit disorder).

    Zoe as usual with the crapola spoutings from the Bible. That doesn’t cut it ZOE when last have you sacrificed something to help your brother? Stop the fcuking preaching and live by example if wunna want to be relevant.


  7. The Business 9 Women Kept A Secret For Three Decades
    –by Lori Weiss, syndicated from huffingtonpost.com, Jun 29, 2012

    Somewhere in West Tennessee, not far from Graceland, nine women — or “The 9 Nanas,” as they prefer to be called — gather in the darkness of night. At 4am they begin their daily routine — a ritual that no one, not even their husbands, knew about for 30 years. They have one mission and one mission only: to create happiness. And it all begins with baked goods.

    “One of us starts sifting the flour and another washing the eggs,” explained Nana Mary Ellen, the appointed spokesperson for their secret society. “And someone else makes sure the pans are all ready. We switch off, depending on what we feel like doing that day.

    “But you make sure to say Nana Pearl is in charge, because she’s the oldest!” she added with a wink and a smile.

    Over the next three hours, The 9 Nanas (who all consider themselves sisters, despite what some of their birth certificates say) will whip up hundreds of pound cakes, as part of a grand scheme to help those in need. And then, before anyone gets as much as a glimpse of them, they’ll disappear back into their daily lives. The only hint that may remain is the heavenly scent of vanilla, lemon and lime, lingering in the air….

    continued on http://www.dailygood.org/view.php?sid=264


  8. islandgal246 | August 28, 2013 at 9:22 AM |

    Well Well what the france are you speaking about?
    ____________________________________________

    The point is it is well past the point of talking the talking and not walking the talk. I refuse to spell out everything.


  9. Not just the church to do good, the church is people, you & me. Why not ask your politicians to do their bit as well, & not just the working middle class, who are lumbered with numerous taxes. The politicians should have their pay cut by 10%, and their entertainment allowances should be cut, plus their travelling allowances. Their wives should not be travelling on tax payers money, then any one can start asking taxpayers to do more. Don’ forget the Bible says we shall always have the poor with us.


  10. “For by grace (unmerited, unearned favour) you have been saved through faith ( In Jesus Christ), and that NOT* of yourselves: it IS* the gift of God, NOT of works ( good works, etc) lest anyone should boast. ”

    “For we are His workmanship, created IN* Christ Jesus FOR good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk ( go and do good works, feed the poor, etc), in them.” ( Eph. 2: 8-10) Emphasis added.

    Feeding the poor, helping the oppressed, is a good civic mined thing to do, BUT, it does NOT hold any weight with God as far as been Saved unto eternal Life is concerned. However, if one IS Saved, then GO and DO good works, as a demonstration of your FAITH, as Faith without works is dead.


  11. We see the moons of your Mars, Phobos portside, Deimos starboard. You passed these moons in your mewling suckling phase when we loved you.

    We have journeyed long but are not weary. Those of us who have been among you, they are weary.

    It is wearysome to be among your Saudi Zionist jahadist velly-funnyist Bushist baffist motherfuckerist rusticbajangardenist pointlesness.

    As your Lord said, wrongly (Beyoncė Shanique Shontette Kwanye Ju-Wan, 79: 9): “Utilitarian philosophy demands that the better off give away almost all their wealth.”

    No. It doesn’t.


  12. islandgal246 @| August 28, 2013 at 10:10 AM |

    The Business 9 Women Kept A Secret For Three Decades
    –by Lori Weiss, syndicated from huffingtonpost.com, Jun 29, 2012@

    WE READ THE LINK , THAT IS WHO WE ARE , KEEP WATCHING.
    THAT WAS THE PLAN , UNTIL THE LAWYERS SAW A WAY FOR SELF AND OTHERS, WE ARE GETTING BACK TO WHAT BEATRICE HENRY PLAN FOR BARBADOS

    BPL AND THE DLP TOOK THE CAKE FOR SELF,
    WE ALL NOW IN THE SAME BOOK , SOON WE WILL BE ON THE SAME PAGE. THY KINGDOM COME


  13. The Christian way
    UPDATE 2 The intense press coverage following the raid forced its Finnish owners to sell the Tower to a group of shadowy Italian investors. When this group turned out to be a front for the Vatican there was a mass protest by the Danish Sex Party (Trække dit Ben). In a shocking development the Church dropped its plan to convert the Tower to a home for elderly nuns and continued running the sex business (with significantly raised prices). Responding to clerical pressure, the management installed 24 hour confession booths on each floor and renamed the Tower Parvum Meum Iocus, to honor the justly obscure Pope Peccator the Seventh (256 BC – 241 BC

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/cliffmichaels/8180347676/in/faves-belfast1970/

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