How we treat those less fortunate than ourselves says alot about us. The corruption of King Shallum, son of Josiah, in Jeremiah 22, was revealed by how he treated the oppressed, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow (v.3).
He used them to build his house and then did not pay them their due wages (v.13). He was only focused on himself rather than caring for the poor and the needy (v.16-17). Because of this, he would be given into the hands of his enemies and his descendents would not rule on the throne of David in the future (v.24-30).
As we consider the covetousness and the cruelty of Shallum, we should look at our own lives as well:
- How do we treat those less fortunate then ourselves?
- Do we care for the widow, the fatherless, the stranger, the oppressed?
- Do we pay our bills and give those who help us what is due them?
- Do we use and abuse or help and assist?
This applies spiritually as well. We who have been blessed with great spiritual blessings should not consume them on our own desires and families. We should share and invest them in the work of reaching the world with the gospel.