James 1:27 Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.
The second example of demonstrating genuine faith in Jesus is looking after orphans and widows in their distress. In the first-century, orphans and widows had no standing in society or any ability to support themselves.
However, assisting orphans and widows in their distress can be messy, expensive, and thankless. The genuine Disciple, however, expresses the heart of Jesus by caring for those who hurt. God has commanded His people to take care of orphans and widows. A
Jesus spoke about helping those in need: ” 35 For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? 38 And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39 When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’” B
The third example of pure and undefiled religion is to keep oneself unspotted by the world. The world represents a system of values influenced by evil, centered on self, and opposed to God. Jesus said, “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you .” C To be unpotted by this world requires a diligent, daily focus on God’s purposes.
Obedient Disciples must help people in distress and remain unspotted before the world.
Notes: A- Deuteronomy 10:18; Psalms 10:14-18; 68:5; 146:9; Hosea 14:3; Exodus 22:22-24; Deuteronomy 24:17; 27:19; Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 1:17; Zechariah 7:10; James 1:27; B- Matthew 25:35-40; C- John 15:18-19