After facing much opposition for his teaching, Jesus is betrayed by Judas, disowned by the disciples, crucified and buried. Only two days before all these things happened (Mathew 26,1) Jesus tells THE PARABLE OF THE SHEEP AND GOATS – maybe to show that the human judgement on Him and others is irrelevant and GOD is the ultimate Judge…
This parable ( Matthew 25,31) describes the consequences of two attitudes to Christ’s return: (1) The person who diligently prepares for it by investing his time and talent to serve God will be rewarded; (2) The person who has no heart for the work of the kingdom will be punished. God will separate his obedient followers from pretenders and unbelievers; the real evidence of our belief is the way we act. To treat all persons we encounter as if they are Jesus is no easy task. What we do for others demonstrates what we really think about Jesus’ words to us – feed the hungry, give the homeless a place to stay, look after the sick.
This parable describes acts of mercy we all can do every day; these acts do not depend on wealth, ability, or intelligence, they are simple acts freely given and freely received. We have no excuse to neglect those who have deep needs, and we cannot hand over this responsibility to the church or government.
‘ The pains of hell’ are not the greatest part of hell. ‘The loss of heaven’ is the weightiest woe of hell. (St. John Chrysostom)