" 'Do you think you are a king because you compete in cedar? Did not your father eat and drink and do justice and righteousness? Then it was well with him. He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well. Is not this to know me?' declares the LORD." Jeremiah 22:15-16
The king of Israel of that time was very foolish. His father, Josiah, had done right in the eyes of the Lord. He is a king we have all heard about for his great deeds. However, his son, is another story. Jehoiakim undid everything Josiah had done to honor the Lord. This was when God called him out on that.
God was telling Jehoiakim that he was not a king because he lived in a fine palace. His father was a true king because he made it a daily part of his life to do justice and righteousness. His father was a regular, consistent help to the poor and needy. Then God says something really key, "Is not this to know me?"
Josiah was a good king because he understood the some of the basic desires of God's heart. Justice. Righteousness. And caring for the poor and needy.
Proverbs 31:9 says, "Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy."
There are a lot of verses that tell us to live in justice and truth. How interesting that they should be paired with caring for the poor and needy!
Living in justice and righteousness is something God wants for all of us, but God also wants us to love each other. To care for each other. If you have no love, then you got nothing. To know a basic principle of God's heart is to understand that God wants us to love and care for one another. That is how we will really come to know Him. That is how we will be proper kings, queens, leaders, teachers, and believers.
Caring for our fellow man needs to be made a daily part of our lives.