Pure and Undefiled Religion

July 1, 2008
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The people we assist exist on the edge of disaster. They eat simple basic food, nothing elaborate or special. Their homes are ramshackle. The help we give often is just enough to make the difference between life and death. They literally depend on us for their lives. One such man is Alfred Schreyer, 86 years old, a Holocaust survivor. He wrote this letter to us:

Dear Stanislaw and Daniel (Project Tikvah Managers):

In the book of James, we read, “Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble and to keep oneself unspotted from the world” (1:27).

It is so easy to act religious: attending church regularly, carrying our Bibles, even fasting. But what does God expect from the true believer? It isn’t only religious discipline, but righteous, compassionate action. In Isaiah 58, the prophet talks about fasting, and then says that the fast the Lord has chosen is this: “Is this not the fast that I have chosen: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke? Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and that you bring to your house the poor who are cast out; when you see the naked, that you cover him, and not hide yourself from your own flesh? Then your light shall break forth like the morning, your healing shall spring forth speedily, and your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard. Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer; you shall cry and He will say, ‘Here I am’…If you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness shall be as the noonday. The LORD shall guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and strengthen your bones” (vv. 6–11a).

Yeshua said blessing will come to those who care for those in need: “Come you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink…Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me” (Matthew 25:34b–35a, 40b).

As we pray for a miracle, is God calling you to provide their miracle? If so, please be generous. Your gift is the gift of life.

Blessings from Jerusalem,

Rebecca J. Brimmer
International President and CEO