Q. I think we’ve all – at one time or another – been approached by a stranger asking for money because (supposedly) they’re in a desperate situation and need help. You give them some money but walk away wondering if you’ve just been conned. Don’t Christians have more to consider when confronted like this (i.e., what does God expect from me, the parable of the Good Samaritan, entertaining an angel unawares.) I don’t mind helping someone who truly needs help – if I can; I just don’t want to be an easy mark. How do you think a Christian should handle this type of situation?
A. Luke 6:30-31 says, “Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
This is the season when we think of what the Lord has given us. We can’t give back to Him, but we can express our gratitude to Him by giving to others. And it’s impossible to feel like you’re being taken advantage of if the motive behind your giving is gratitude to the Lord. I also believe that by giving out of gratitude we’re storing up treasure in Heaven (Matt. 6:19). If that makes me an easy mark, so be it.
Remember, the Lord has promised to restore the money we give. He said,
Give and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured to you (Luke 6:38).
And 2 cor. 9:6 tells us “whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, but whoever sows generously will also reap generously.”
In Acts 20:35 Paul said it is more blessed to give than to receive. But these verses show that it’s most blessed to give and receive. That’s because God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor. 9:7).