The scenes are as disgusting as they are disturbing. A nation ravaged by abject poverty. Children dying by the thousands of simple diarrhea ultimately caused by a poor diet. Malnutrition as common as fleas on a hound dog. All the while the leader(s) of the nation live(s) in lavish affluence. The statistics on poverty are mind numbing:

  • Worldwide, 1.3 billion people live in absolute poverty, living on less than 1 dollar per day.
  • 1 out of 5 people in this world are malnourished (the planet can produce enough food).
  • Every day 35,000 children under five years old die from hunger-related diseases.
  • 250,000 children die every week of malnutrition.
  • 1/3 of the grain and 1/2 of the fish caught worldwide goes to feed animals in developed nations.
  • Working together, we could end child malnutrition, preventable disease and illiteracy worldwide within one decade-and it would cost us less than Americans would spend on beer in that time. (UNICEF estimate).
  • The top 1/5th of the world’s population enjoys 61 times the goods and services of the lower 1/5th.
  • The net worth of the richest 358 people in the world is equal to the combined income of the 2.3 billion poorest people in the world.

     In Mexico the poorest 10% of the population receives 1.52% of the Gross National Income while the top 10% receives 38.7% of it. Many are crying out about the injustice of it all. Many are warning Mexico, and many other countries where there is such blatant social and economic injustice, that social unrest and outright revolution are real threats that need to be taken seriously.

     What about access to the gospel? If we talked about those who are being fed spiritually from God’s Word and those who are not I wonder what those statistics would look like. How many “spiritual meals” do we gorge ourselves with each week in comfort while most of the world starves spiritually?

     What about us? Does the fact that we are among the planet’s richest inhabitants impose upon us any responsibility at all? What about us? Does the fact that we have been given not only earthly wealth but eternal life as well impose upon us any responsibility at all?