God the Father
Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world. —James 1:27 ESV
Have you heard your dad ask the rest of the family to help out around the house or to assist someone who was sick?
James refers to God as “the Father” to remind us that we are all part of a big family of faith. The Bible refers to all those that believe in Christ as family. Through Christ we are brothers and sisters in Christ.
In the Old Testament, God is referred to as a father to the fatherless (Ps. 146:9). Fathers back in that day served as the financial provider and protector. Here James is reminding Christians, God’s family, that God is a father who loves and cares for the fatherless children and the lonely widow.
In Judaism, it wasn’t uncommon for the community to pull together the needed resources to help those that were in need, especially the orphans and the widows of society. James here reminds Christians that these actions are still very important to God, and he sees them as necessary demonstration of their faith as well.
We need to remember that God the Father adopted us all as His sons and daughters by paying the greatest price of Christ on the cross. God paid for our adoptions through His Son Jesus Christ, and He wants us to show a similar kind of love to those in need as well. By doing so, we show the love of our Heavenly Father.
Read Isaiah 1:17
• What does it say we need to learn to do?
• What are a few ways we could start to do that?
Lord, help me to learn more and more about how to do good for those in need. Specifically, Lord, open my heart to care for the orphans and widows, not simply with my heart but with my hands, so that I can do something! Show me, Lord, what to do next. In Jesus' name, amen.