This past Sunday we had a guest speaker at church, a pastor with a children’s home ministry. The ministry began with a home in southwestern Virginia, and has expanded to an orphanage in Tuxtepec, Oaxaca, Mexico. Both children’s homes are in poor, mountainous communities—the former the region where my late great-grandmother lived. Both orphanages do amazing work with the kids, combining work (like gardening, feeding donkeys, and the like) with play—even a band!
In giving his talk about the ministry, the guest pastor referenced a few passages of Scripture. Aside from the famous passage from Matthew 19:14 in which Jesus told the disciples to “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven,” the pastor also referenced Exodus 22:22-24, which deals with how widows and orphans are to be treated:
22You must not mistreat any widow or orphan. 23If you do mistreat them, and they cry out to Me in distress, I will surely hear their cry. 24My anger will be kindled, and I will kill you with the sword; then your wives will become widows and your children will be fatherless.
It’s a pretty powerful passage, and a reminder that God doesn’t mess around with sin, especially against the weakest and most defenseless. We like to think that God has “mellowed out” since sending Jesus to die for our sins, but that’s dangerously wishful thinking. God doesn’t change, and His Wrath is still mighty.