Who is the right person to give alms to?

Every one met a person begging for money at least once. But we can often see how those money are being spent on alcohol, cigarettes and indecency. Is helping people like these and promoting their bad habits a right thing?

Let’s first take a look at what Bible tells us about charity. Book of Proverbs 19:17: “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed”

Also Bible separates concerns of “sacrifice” and “charity”. These are different forms of ministering to God. Any donation or offering or sacrifice relate only to God. We can’t “sacrifice” money to people, but only to God in church. At the same time our help to those in need in the streets Bible treats as our virtue, display of mercy and charity. The Scripture tells us that God blesses us when we help people in need as faith without deeds is dead. And display of mercy is a render of love and faith.

So, what kind of people should we be merciful to?

It is, of course, people in need, with orphans and widows standing out because even at Bible times they were the most financially vulnerable and dependent on others. And the Scripture keeps exaggerating on never forgetting to help those in need.

On the other hand, should we offer to anyone? There are people in need due to neither their physical or intellectual inability to earn money nor the overwhelming circumstances but due to their laziness or reluctance in taking responsibility for their own lives. And Bible tells us not to help people like that as we foster their way of life. We can only help by telling them about God and how their attitude and laziness drive them into poverty. Therefore, is’n it wrong to offer money to the begging one when we know for sure it would be spent on alcohol, drugs or anything else ruining their life? Those sins destroy their lives. And offering them money means helping them walking the wrong way. We, being a children of God, must understand this and make offerings only if it helps one make through the day or change their life. We must administer The Lord’s blessings wisely and consider each and every our donation realizing whether it is for good or not.

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