Jesus did some outlandish things in His earth walk:
(a) Drive the sellers in the synagogue out with whips turning over their tables.
(b) Heal the blind man by spitting in the mud and making a paste out of it.
(c) Leaving his parents to chat with the elders when he was but a boy.
But his greatest character in my opinion was the compassion He had towards people.
Encounters of Compassion
There are many encounters in the Bible where Jesus met with people whom, before He would heal or minister to them in some way, he had deep compassion on them.
Matthew 9:35-36 And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were faint and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.
Jesus felt compassion because
- the people had no Savior.
- they didn’t know a better life existed and
- all they had at that point was a lot of religion.
Mark 8:1-3 In those days, the multitude being very great and having nothing to eat, Jesus called His disciples unto Him and said unto them, “I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now been with Me three days and have nothing to eat. And if I send them away fasting to their own houses, they will faint by the way; for divers of them came from afar.
The All-Weekend Conference
Jesus was teaching the people many days (like an all-weekend conference). Yet, they had no food or water. Jesus didn’t have to be concerned about their lack of food. He could have sent them on their way. Jesus didn’t call the meeting together, it just happened. He made it His concern and made a difference to the people that day.
And it came to pass the day after, that He went into a city called Nain; and many of His disciples went with Him, and many people. Now when He came nigh to the gate of the city, behold, there was a dead man being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And many people of the city were with her. But when the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said unto her, “Weep not.” And He came and touched the bier, and those who bore him stood still. Then He said, “Young man, I say unto thee, arise.” And he that was dead sat up and began to speak. And He delivered him to his mother. Luke 7:12-15
This seemed to be the only family this woman had, and I am sure she was in so much tears and pain at losing him. Jesus saw that and intervened in her pain.
Are We Too Busy?
Sometimes I think that as Christians we are too busy with our lives – with the activities of being a Christian (like playing music for your church, preaching, singing) that we don’t take the time to see that there’s a world dying out here and we are not reaching people or making a difference to them.
How can we preach or sing to people who are hungry, have nothing to wear, no job, and no money for school or bills or the basic amenities that we enjoy? The reason that Jesus met the peoples’ needs was so that He could then show them the love of God.
The compassion that the Lord expects from us should be just like His – not of words but of deeds. I encourage you today to step out of the box and be compassionate towards people – help someone cross the road, let someone who is busy walk in front of you, share your lunch, smile with someone, say a kind word – you never know what your act of compassion can do for that person.
May God’s wisdom fill us as we go about our daily lives today, Amen.