The chain of divine love.
Something to think about
We are so familiar with this passage, sometimes using it with more sentimentality than discernment, that we may be in danger of overlooking its paradoxical and conditional nature. This choosing of the small and weak who are understood to have little agency and therefore depend upon responsible care from the larger, stronger and more capable, subverts the preconceptions of divine relation and power. It does not seem unreasonable to wonder if Jesus’ listeners may have missed its meaning. We are not told. What oversets our unexamined assumptions can be hard to hear and, as so often, his radical inversions may still escape us today.
Christian Aid’s work among some of the world’s poorest and least powerful people is framed in the unspoken opposite to Jesus’ example: ‘if you don’t welcome such as these...’ How easily we might fail in hospitality towards Godself.