Proverbs 19:17 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Proverbs 19:17, NIV: Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward them for what they have done.

Proverbs 19:17, ESV: Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will repay him for his deed.

Proverbs 19:17, KJV: He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.

Proverbs 19:17, NASB: One who is gracious to a poor person lends to the LORD, And He will repay him for his good deed.

Proverbs 19:17, NLT: If you help the poor, you are lending to the LORD--and he will repay you!

Proverbs 19:17, CSB: Kindness to the poor is a loan to the Lord, and he will give a reward to the lender.

What does Proverbs 19:17 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Once again, Scripture commends deep concern for the needs of the poor (Proverbs 14:21; 19:7; 21:13; 29:7). Charity honors God, and a person who helps the needy does God's will as well as God's work (Matthew 5:16). The implication of the term "lend" suggests that God will repay those who are generous—not necessarily with earthly wealth, but in spiritual blessing. The statement foreshadows the words of Jesus. Speaking about the final judgment, and those who provided for the poor, Christ says, "Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me" (Matthew 25:40).

Paul urged the Corinthians to give generously to the relief of poor Christians in Judea. He reminded the Corinthians that Jesus set aside His riches in heaven and became poor so believers could benefit (2 Corinthians 8:9). In the tribulation period many Jewish believers in Jesus will be persecuted. They will suffer the loss of property and possessions. Yet those who believe in Christ through their preaching will help them with food, clothes, and shelter.