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To Comfort Others

November 04, 2019
By Martin Luther

"Let a little water be brought, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree, while I bring a morsel of bread, that you may refresh yourselves."

GENESIS 18:4-5

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To Comfort Others

This precept concerning hospitality pertains chiefly to those whom Christ (Matthew 25:40) calls "the least." For wherever the Word is, there Satan, the enemy, is stirring up physical and spiritual persecutions. In Paradise itself he was unable to rest until he drove Adam with his Eve into exile. Therefore we must be ready to give comfort to the brethren. Those who are afflicted by spiritual persecution should be comforted and strengthened with the Word; but those who are afflicted by physical persecution should be assisted with bread and water, that is, with love and hospitality, everyone according to his need. This is what Abraham does here. He sees these three strangers. He does not know who they are; but he does know and see that they are poor and that they are tired from the journey. Therefore he quickly fetches water, washes the feet of the guests, orders a calf to be slaughtered, bread to be prepared, and drink to be fetched. But just as he unknowingly receives the Lord Himself in a hospitable manner, so we, too, when we show some kindness to the least in the kingdom of God, receive Christ Himself in a hospitable manner when He comes to us in the persons of His poor.

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