Hospitality Doesn’t Come Naturally
Yet Jesus says our reward will be determined by our hospitality. No exception for poverty, BTW. A cup of cold water is about as basic as you can get!
(See the story of Elijah and the Widow: 1 Kings 17:8-15)
The Mystery Guest
Jesus says that when we show hospitality even to one of his “little ones” we are welcoming Him (and therefore, God the Father).
At the very least, this is a lesson that we must treat God’s people with respect and concern. But it also indicates that we experience a “mystical union” with God Himself when we serve others.
Three Kinds of Guests
Why we support missionaries and vocational Christian workers.
The “Righteous” One
Why we support each other.
“These Little Ones”
Here, this refers specifically to disciples. But elsewhere Jesus teaches that all must be shown hospitality—even those who don’t believe.
“Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me.”
(Mark 9:37, Luke 9:48. See also John 13:20)
“...I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in.”
(The Sheep and the Goats, Matthew 25:31-46)
Drawing the Line
Is there a time to “close the door” of hospitality? If it leads to destruction or enables sinful behavior, it should be cut off.
Professional “guests” can do great damage! However, if we must err, it is always better to err on the side of mercy.
The Question We Must Ask
If my guests are to be welcomed as God Himself, what must I do differently?
What is The Reward?
Simply, Wonderfully This: Union with Christ
New King James Version (NKJV)
A Cup of Cold Water
40 “He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me. 41 He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward. And he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.”