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Defend the cause of the poor - Sharing Hope, Purpose & Life

Defend the cause of the poor

There have been a number of political shifts in our state in the recent months. Along with a change in governance, there has also been a change in policy.

Recently the Karnataka government has passed a new bill that reserves one third of all government jobs for women. There have been other allowances for the women of Karnataka. The bus tickets are free for all women born in this state. Electricity under 200 units is free for households with a woman. The reservation in particular may face some backlash, but can be defended. The idea is that since women are often overlooked for positions of power and go through more hurdles for their education, there should be no bias that keeps them from jobs they are qualified for. As per the Constitution, at least one-third of the seats in local governing bodies should be reserved for women. Bihar was the first state to reserve 50% of seats for women in Panchayat Raj Institutions (PRIs) in 2006. In Karnataka, 50% reservation has been given to women in local bodies.

Throughout history there have been sectors of society that have been oppressed by those more fortunate. The poor, the foreigners and immigrants, those of a different religion than the masses, the disabled etc. Rarer than that, people came together, saw these injustices and did something about it. Reservation for SC and OBC is common in India. The US has reservations based on race. Most countries have economic reservation for the poor.  These programs are often filled with corruption and bribes because of the general evil of man. Even so, they were started with good intentions because people understood the basic truth. Even though we are born with equal worth, not everyone is born with equal opportunities. These programs encourage empathy, so we think of others who are dealt a worse life than ours.

In the Bible, when God gave the law to Israel, along with the laws against crime there were another set of instructions. The instructions to be kind to those who do not have the basic needs required to live.

Leviticus 23:22

‘When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not wholly reap the corners of your field when you reap, nor shall you gather any gleaning from your harvest. You shall leave them for the poor and for the stranger: I am the LORD your God.

Isaiah 1:17

“Learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.”

Luke 6:35,36

But love your enemies, do good, and lend, [h]hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.

Proverbs 14:21                     

He who despises his neighbor sins; But he who has mercy on the poor, happy is he.

Psalm 82:3

“Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed

Hebrews 13:2

Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels.

These show that the nature of empathy is not man made, but placed in the heart of man by God. He is a merciful person who considers the position of the weaker classes of people. If we feel that the reservations are unfair it may be because some people cheat the system. They may lie about how much they need. We may feel that they receive opportunities they don’t deserve simply because of their birth. All of these are because of the  corruption of man. God sees through such deception. He cares for the truly needful. He knows them well.

Deuteronomy 10:18
“He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the alien, giving them food and clothing.”


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