Compassion involves action.
The Compassion of God:
"Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness." Lamentations 3:22-23
"Yet he was merciful;
he forgave their iniquities
and did not destroy them.
Time after time he restrained his anger
and did not stir up his full wrath.
39 He remembered that they were but flesh,
a passing breeze that does not return." Psalm 78:38-39
Look at people through Jesus's eyes -- from His perspective. Everyone has weaknesses.
“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
I will not forget you!" Isaiah 49:15
"Though the mountains be shaken
and the hills be removed,
yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
nor my covenant of peace be removed,”
says the Lord, who has compassion on you." Isaiah 54:10
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God." 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
God is called "The Father of Compassion" and the "God of all comfort." This is the kind of compassion we are called to have for people God brings into our lives.
The problem is we often have a lack of compassion in our hearts toward people -- especially when their struggles are caused by their own bad choices. But God doesn't judge our struggles this way. If we are in need of compassion God will show us compassion no matter if the problem is our fault or not. Our problem also is that our culture (and we buy into it) tells us to have the attitude, "It's all about me." That is not how God calls us to be.
God's compassion leads to Jesus.
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." John 3:16-17
God had no obligation to help us. But He did and He does...because He loves us. God is love.
The compassion of Jesus.
"When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick. As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.” Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”" Matthew 14:14-16
Jesus was grieving for his cousin and friend John the Baptist. He put His grief aside to minister to the people.
"When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd." Matthew 9:36
"A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.”Jesus was indignant. He reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!”" Mark 1:40-41
This is the kind of compassion we are called to have.
“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full." Matthew 6:1-2
WHEN, not IF when we help. When there's a need you give. When there's a need you share.
“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
“So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full." 1 Peter 3:8
"Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience." Colossians 3:12
Compassion is not a normal human response. Do not harden your heart. Do not gorw callous to the endless needs. Don't stop giving because the receivers stay the same.
"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."
Compassion is commanded.
"“This is what the Lord Almighty said: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another. 10 Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the foreigner or the poor. Do not plot evil against each other.’" Zechariah 7:9-10
Matthew 25 -- It's not good vs evil. It's about compassion.
31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”" Matthew 25:31-46
We will be divided based on our compassion for others.
1. Be conscious of needs.
2. Have desire to show compassion.
3. Look for it. Do what you can with what you have.