St. John Chrysostom’s Commentary on Matthew 25

Andrew Abdalla, a supporter from the UK, sent the below email to his personal network. There there are still a few days before the end of the 2011 tax year for those in North America. There is also still about a week before Old Julian Calendar Christmas, which the Coptic Church celebrates everywhere. So this is still very timely.  

Matthew 25:31-40

31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holyangels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. 33 And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? 39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

St John Chrysostom

I was thirsty and you gave Me drink” –  Who is this who says these things? He who fills nature with lakes and rivers and fountains of water.
I was naked and you clothed Me” –  Who is this who says these things? He who clothes the sky with clouds and clothes the church and entire universe.

Give heed to what is marvelous. He did not remind them of any other work of virtue, only this; although he could have said, “Come you blessed, because you were of sound mind, because you led a virginal life, because you assumed angelic way of life.” However He remains silent regarding these, not because they are unworthy of remembrance, but because they are secondary to beneficence. Just as to those whom He placed on His right hand, He revealed how they were granted the Kingdom, “you gave me food…, you gave me drink…, you clothed me…”

Just think of Christ inviting the almsgiver before the angels and every heavenly power on that day and saying to him, “He granted me hospitality on earth. He performed myriads of good services for me, He sheltered me in his home when i was a stranger.” Therefore, consider the courage that you will have before the angels, your boast infront of the heavenly citizens. How can the one who has Christ’s favour not have boldness exceeding even that of the angels? Hence, almsgiving is a great matter my brethren.

Andrew Abdalla’s comments: If you are searching for a way to give this Christmas, please consider Coptic Orphans. Provide food, clothes & drink for our Lord Jesus Christ by sponsoring a child or providing a donation

About Nathan Hollenbeck

Nathan joined Coptic Orphans in 2006. It was his response to a call to help return Egypt’s hospitality to the Holy Family on behalf of Christ Emmanuel and the Theotokos, after they changed his own life as a youth. He has a passion to fulfill God’s command to “bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.” (Isaiah 1:17, ESV)