God Gives Simply To Those In Need

There is nothing we need do or to be in particular in order for God to be giving to us. The distinction between good and bad, between Jew and Gentile--all the distinctions that typically determine the boundaries of human love and concern--fall away in that God gives simply to those in need, in order to address every respect in which they are in need, without concern for anything they especially are or have done to deserve it.

God's giving indeed breaks all the usual boundaries of closed communities. In creating the world, God goes outside the community of the divine Trinity of offer gifts to the stranger, to what is not divine. God offers the gift of Godself in partnership with a people by choosing those who are deprived and enslaved strangers within the community in which they reside. Jesus aligns himself with those without favor or good standing within the community of God's people; and brings all within the very life of the triune God despite all their difference, despite indeed the greatest difference of all that remains nonetheless, between divine and non-divine.

In order to be proper ministers of God's benefits, we would therefore need to recognize the common right of all to the goods of God, simply as creatures; we would have to recognize our obligation to advance the fortunes of that universal community of creatures that is the object of God's favor. God's giving is not owed to creatures but if those gifts are being given unconditionally by God to all in need, creatures are in fact owed the goods of God by those ministering such benefits, without being or having done anything in particular to deserve them. 

--Kathryn Tanner

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