Should I give money to the poor when I have little money?


So, when I have some money (about five lei) and a poor begs (though I have a great need of money) should I give it to the poor? I wondered “What would Jesus do in my place?”. I know that he would give it to the poor, but I really need that money. I hope I expressed myself well. I want you to tell me your opinion. It should not be necessary linked to the Bible.

I will answer according to the Bible, because I lead my life according to the Word of God and because I created this site just for the purpose to present the reality from the perspective of the Bible. So now, what would I do when I must give to the poor and how is it correct according to God’s Word to proceed with the poor and beggars who ask for your help?

Do good when you have the opportunity and give to the  poor

In the Epistle to the Galatians it is written:

The one who is taught the word is to share all good things with the one who teaches him. Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary. So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. (Galatians 6:6-10)(NASB)

This text highlights three important truths about generosity in the Christian’s life:

  1. The Christian must share his property with the one who teaches him the sound doctrine of God’s Word. Warning, God does not put here any charges and does not say to the one who gives teaching from the Word to do this for money or to ask for that part. This word is for that one who receives instructions from God’s Word and God teaches him to share all his goods with the one who teaches him.
  2. When he has the opportunity, the Christian must do good, and so, give the poor of his money and to all those whom he can help. Warning: the Word says “when we have opportunity”, that means when we have the possibility. If we do not have the possibility, or if we do not have enough for our needs or our family needs, no one asks us to give to the poor or to help others.
  3. When we have the possibility to give to the poor and to help them, let us give priority to our brothers in faith, i.e. primarily to help our brothers of faith who face material or financial problems.

We are not God and we are not able to meet the needs of all poor. But as long as we can do good, let us do good and give to the poor.

Provide for those from your house

In the first epistle to Timothy Paul wrote:

But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. (1 Timothy 5:8)(NASB)

With the money we earn we should firstly take care of those from our household and you can not put the needs of the poor or the needs of others above our own. Our household is the wife, children, parents, brothers, sisters, etc.

Do not withhold good when you have the possibility to give to the poor

The wise Solomon wrote in the book of Proverbs as follows:

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it. Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come back, and tomorrow I will give it,” when you have it with you. (Proverbs 3:27-28)(NASB)

True religion is manifested in generosity to the deprived and giving to the poor

In the Epistle of James it is written:

Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world. (James 1:27)(NASB)

Orphans and widows, and in our age elderly people, too, are the category of people who live in poverty and need our help. Therefore, do not pass indifferently by these poor people and when you can do a charity, do not withhold it.

Do not close your eyes to the needs of the poor

Also in the book of Proverbs of Solomon it is written:

He who is generous will be blessed, for he gives some of his food to the poor. (Proverbs 22:9)(NASB)

and one more …

He who gives to the poor will never want, but he who shuts his eyes will have many curses. (Proverbs 28:27)(NASB)

It is more blessed to give to the poor than to receive

When he was taking farewell from the church elders in Ephesus, Apostle Paul reminded them about his way of living in their midst and said:

“You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my own needs and to the men who were with me. 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.’” (

Acts 20:34-35)(NASB)

Work in order to have to give to the poor

In the Epistle to Ephesians, Paul teaches those recently come to faith in Jesus Christ and says:

He who steals must steal no longer; but rather he must labor, performing with his own hands what is good, so that he will have something to share with one who has need. (Ephesians 4:28)(NASB)

Put together all these teachings and decide by yourself how to proceed when you see the poor and deprived.

Translated by Felicia Rotaru