Reference: Alms, Almsgiving
An alms' (Ac 3:3) is something freely given, in money or in kind, to the needy, from motives of love and pity for the recipient, and of gratitude to the Giver of all. Hence what is given or paid to the poor under the authority and compulsion of law, as the modern poor rate, is not alms. For such legal provision in OT times see Poor. Much might be of the humane spirit which pervades the whole of the Hebrew legislation, and in particular the legislation of Dt, of which, in this respect, De 15:1 may be taken as the epitome: 'Thou shalt surely open thine hand unto thy brother, to thy needy and to thy poor' (RV). The writings of the prophets, also, are full of generous advocacy of the rights of the poor. In the later pre-Christian centuries almsgiving became one of the most prominent of religious duties (Ps 112:9; Pr 14:21; 19:17; 31:20; Job 29:12 f.). The sentiment of the 2nd cent. b.c.
"At the end of every seven years you shall grant a remission of debts.
Because I delivered the poor who cried for help, And the orphan who had no helper.
He has given freely to the poor, His righteousness endures forever; His horn will be exalted in honor.
He who despises his neighbor sins, But happy is he who is gracious to the poor.
One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD, And He will repay him for his good deed.
She extends her hand to the poor, And she stretches out her hands to the needy.
'Therefore, O king, may my advice be pleasing to you: break away now from your sins by doing righteousness and from your iniquities by showing mercy to the poor, in case there may be a prolonging of your prosperity.'
"Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.
"Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven. "So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. read more. "But when you give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving will be in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.
'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;
"For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because of your name as followers of Christ, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.
When he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he began asking to receive alms.
And the congregation of those who believed were of one heart and soul; and not one of them claimed that anything belonging to him was his own, but all things were common property to them.
For there was not a needy person among them, for all who were owners of land or houses would sell them and bring the proceeds of the sales
Now at this time while the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint arose on the part of the Hellenistic Jews against the native Hebrews, because their widows were being overlooked in the daily serving of food.
"In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"
Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I directed the churches of Galatia, so do you also.