Hebrews 13:2 (Berean Study Bible)
2 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
How many people did you drive by on the way to work this morning? How many of them did you know? Would you have known any of them by name? Above all, how many of these strangers were angels in disguise?
In our busy, hectic, one-way street ways of life, we tend to forget the many stories of the people around us. In fact, every single person that passes us by has a story, a testimony, a family, and a purpose to their steps. Have you ever wondered just how many stories drive by you on the highway?
Hospitality to strangers is one of the most important laws of the Old and New Testaments. Deuteronomy 10:19 declares that “You are to love those who are aliens, for you yourselves were aliens in Egypt.” Paul reminds the reader in Romans 12:13 that we all must “Share with God’s people in need. Practice hospitality.” Finally, Jesus’ parable in Mathew 25:35 reads, “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
It may seem unbelievable at first, but the Bible contains more laws protecting strangers than any other law. This includes mandates requiring the praise of God, the observance of Sabbath, and even spiritual festivals. Obviously, the protection of the stranger is very important to God, and our continued walk in the faith.
Who are the strangers in your life today? They could be new co-workers, visiting persons in your church group, or even shoppers behind you in the grocery store. They could be male or female, old or young, and Christian or non-Christian. In perhaps the most unlikely of cases, they may be angels in disguise.
It seems almost laughable to imagine an Angel sitting by you on the Subway, but the fact is that these situations have been confirmed to us in the Bible -- and experienced by others before. Sarah and Abraham, parents of God’s Nation, entertained three angels in their home who promised them blessings and goodness to come.
No matter who our daily ‘strangers’ may be, we must treat those around us with the passion, patience, and care that our Father above would. The treatment of the stranger, while perhaps insignificant to us, is a powerful depiction of God’s grace to the world: while we were still sinners and strangers in His love, He died for us. Each one of us walking in His salvation today was personally atoned for on Jesus’ cross, both past, present, and future.
We are not able to reenact God’s mighty deed for the strangers in our lives, but we are able to exhibit the simple truth of God’s love. As emulators of the Lord, our daily walk should reflect the power and goodness of His glory. By entertaining strangers and treating them with the utmost respect, we relive the power of God’s work in our own lives, and allow His light to shine into the lives of others.
Friends, allow your hostility to melt into hospitality for the strangers in your life today!
In what ways can you serve the strangers around you today? Could this service take the form of a meal, a kind word, or a passing prayer? How could you encourage other believers to follow suit in your task this week? Although we may not be able to see it, the strangers that God puts into our lives are critical reminders of the deep love He shares with us. Pour out your love to the angel strangers in your life today!
Isaiah 58:7 (New English Standard Version)
7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, to bring the poor and homeless into your home, to clothe the naked when you see him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
Matthew 25:35 (Berean Study Bible)
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 took Me in.