B1 Altruism is unselfish concern for the well-being of others (Source)
B2 The opposite is egoism which is the tendency to evaluate everything in relation to one’s own interests; self-centeredness (Source)
The Scriptures teach us to be altruistic (unselfishly devoted to the welfare of others).
B1 Proverbs 19:17 WEB He who has pity on the poor lends to Yahweh; he will reward him. The NLT has Proverbs 19:17 NLT If you help the poor, you are lending to the LORD—and he will repay you!
C1 Several translations have lend to the poor as if the passage is only about money or goods.
C2 The Hebrew word is חָנַן chânan. It means to be gracious, to show pity, to give graciously, etc. It is frequently translated mercy or gracious.
C3 Some examples
D1 2 Kings 1:13-14 GNB Once more the king sent an officer with fifty men. He went up the hill, fell on his knees in front of Elijah, and pleaded, “Man of God, be merciful to me and my men. Spare our lives! 14 The two other officers and their men were killed by fire from heaven; but please be merciful to me!“
D2 2 Kings 13:23 NLT But the LORD was gracious and merciful to the people of Israel, and they were not totally destroyed. He pitied them because of his covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And to this day he still has not completely destroyed them or banished them from his presence.
D3 Psalms 37:21 ESV The wicked borrows but does not pay back, but the righteous is generous and gives.
B2 Luke 10:35 NLT The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, ‘Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I’ll pay you the next time I’m here.
If we can supply and are aware of the need, then we must help. If we cannot supply or are not aware, then we cannot. Dorcas (Tabitha) was able, aware, and willing. Acts 9:36, 39 NIV In Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (in Greek her name is Dorcas); she was always doing good and helping the poor. … 39 Peter went with them, and when he arrived he was taken upstairs to the room. All the widows stood around him, crying and showing him the robes and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was still with them.
There are sometimes greater needs than material needs. Some of these are time (to listen), assistance (think elderly), helping the single parent, the pastor, the local church, etc. A common need today is to assist with those alone because of social isolation.
We can do this.
A Few Thoughts about Altruism
Posted by Choco at 07:08 on 30 Nov 20
Labels: Altruism, Helping others