Summary: The Commandment of Compassion: Luke 6:36, Jesus said “You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.”
We continue in our series on Hope Found Here and this month our focus is on the Compassion of Father God. This morning what I want us to consider together is The Commandment of Compassion.
To focus our thoughts this morning consider these words:
Psalm 103:13 says, “The Lord is like a father to His children, tender and compassionate to those who fear Him.”
Psalm 145:8, “The Lord is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.”
In Luke 6:36, Jesus said “You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.”
What do these verses tell us?
God is our compassionate Father, He is merciful, patient and loving. We are meant to be compassionate. In fact, to show compassion is a commandment, a commandment from Jesus to His disciples, a commandment from Jesus to you and me.
“You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.”
So here is the question: Are you following or ignoring the command of Jesus to be compassionate?
Let me put the question another way: Are you demonstrating the love of God to others? Are you caring for others or only caring for yourself?
It is possible for us to be so tied up with our own needs, wants or desires that we leave no time or space for showing compassion to others. If we are so busy with ourselves we can neglect others yet Jesus commands each of us to be compassionate.
We can make excuses:
“Oh, I didn’t notice that person needed help..”
“I thought someone else would get involved...”
“I’m far too busy with stuff that I need to do in my own life.”
Instead of showing compassion we can be negligent, indifferent or selfish.
So, let me ask the question again, are you following or ignoring the command of Jesus to be compassionate?
Are you willing to be more compassionate? Are you willing to be more sensitive to the needs of others? Are you willing to demonstrate the love of God?
Compassion is an expression of love.
Your love for others is an expression of your love for God. Remember the words of Jesus in John 13:34-35,
“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”
Another command from Jesus to us. Another commandment that we should not ignore if we are His disciples. Listen to the words of 1 John 4:7-12, “Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. God showed how much He loved us by sending His one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through Him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and His love is brought to full expression in us.”
Compassion is an expression of God’s love for us and an expression of our love for God.
How do we show compassion to others? In love, in mercy, providing help, giving comfort, showing care - actually doing something! It’s about looking for the opportunity and then actually demonstrating the love of God by being compassionate.
The Apostle Paul in Galatians 6:2-5 said, “Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important. Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. For we are each responsible for our own conduct.”
Do you think sharing someone else’s burdens is beneath you?
Whose burden’s are you carrying right now?
Maybe right now more you are the one who is struggling, burdened, discouraged and you are hoping that someone will have compassion, maybe right now you are praying for someone to say, “Can I help carry your burdens? Can I share the load with you?”
Are your actions and words enabling someone to feel encouraged, supported and loved?
Don’t think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself.
In Philippians 2:3-4, The Apostle Paul wrote, “Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.”