Rader Urges Aid for the Poor
by General Paul A. Rader –
The Founder of The Salvation Army sometimes referred to Isaiah 58:6-12 as the Salvation Army Charter. It has a very contemporary ring! It calls us to be personally involved in acting responsibly and compassionately toward the imprisoned, the homeless poor, the hungry, the inadequately clothed. When Jesus speaks of our giving an account before him in Matthew 25, he speaks to the same social issues. And he assures us that what we do for those in the most desperate situations of poverty, abuse, loneliness and neglect is done for him.
The Salvation Army has a global reputation for its timely and efficient response to major disasters. We have mounted extensive programs of assistance to refugees and those caught up in complex humanitarian emergencies in places like Rwanda and Bosnia. Our response to recent disasters in the USA that have taken such a tragic toll of human life and resulted in such widespread destruction of property have given the Army an unprecedented profile as a major provider of disaster and emergency services. But Salvationists are called to be more than compassion by proxy. >From the passionate plea of the prophet Isaiah to the haunting challenge of our Lord Jesus in Matthew 25, the Gospel calls us to be personally involved–hands-on. Every Salvationist should be personally engaged in some form of service to others. It is a vital dimension of the living out of the Gospel we preach in a world of suffering, neglect, violence and need. What are you doing to care for Jesus’ sake?