Day Three – Welcoming the Stranger

December 21, 2007

Key Verse: “…I was a stranger and you invited me in…” Matthew 25:35b

Read: Matthew 25:31-40

Isn’t it great to have friends over? Or, even better, to get invited over to their place!But the Bible puts a different spin on hospitality. In Scripture, one of the key Greek words for hospitality, philoxeniô, combines the word for love or affection for people connected by kinship or faith (phileo) and the word for stranger (xenos). Hospitality’s orientation towards strangers is more apparent in Greek than in English. Jesus said that when we welcome a stranger, we welcome Him. “It is hard for us in the UK to seek out people who are not the same as us, ethnically, socially or economically,” says Eric, who opened his home to a young refugee couple from Asia. “Like Jesus, my focus needs to be on others and their needs, not on me and my wants.”

Think About It: When was the last time you extended the hand of welcome to someone you didn’t know, a stranger?