According to reliable sources, there are 258 million widows worldwide, 38 million of them live in extreme poverty. They are responsible for 585 million dependent children. In Zimbabwe, when one woman’s husband died, her in-laws took the property she co-owned with her husband. They even stole the fruit from the trees that would keep her alive. Fortunately, she was able to recover some of her property, but millions of others around the world are not so successful. This is the kind of cheating our Lord lambasted while He was here on earth. He was especially hard on the religious leaders who took advantage of poor widows. We find this in Luke Ch 23, “With the crowds listening, [Jesus] turned to his disciples and said, “Beware of these teachers of religious law!… They shamelessly cheat widows out of their property and then pretend to be pious by making long prayers in public. Because of this, they will be severely punished.” So today, businesses, politicians, religious leaders, and individuals must be very careful lest they incur our Lord’s condemnation for cheating widows of their resources. Instead of cheating them, we should be working to improve their living conditions.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More

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