Summary: In these trying times we must sahre Jesus' compassion.
1. A teaching hospital found one of its young resident students had a marvelous effect on children. The children responded to him with delight. They would do things for him and yield to him in a way that they wouldn’t do for others on the staff. The hospital assigned a nurse to discover the secret of this young resident. It wasn’t until the second week when she was on night shift that she found out the secret. Every night on his last round he would kiss, hug, and tuck in every one of the children. It was in that act of compassion that he made his contact. And it’s this compassion that belongs to Jesus--that reaches out to us. It’s this about him that charms us more than anything else. -- Bruce W. Thielemann, "Telltale Tears," Preaching Today, Tape 40.
2. The Bible presents us with a God who is rich with compassion.
Exodus 34:6 6 The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness,
3. His commands us to be compassionate – especially with all that is going on
Deuteronomy 15:11, For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.’
4. “Compassion” in Hebrew and Greek = Love/Mercy/Pity/Sympathy – Strength to weaknesses
5. In what ways does God/should we show compassion?
I. Jesus is God’s Expression of Compassion
A. Compassion to the Children – Matthew 19:14 “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
1. The Lives of Children Matter to Jesus
2. What would he say today about:
b. Sex Trafficking (form of slavery)?
d. Child pornography?
B. Compassion to the Outcast
1. Sick – Matthew 14:14 14 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick. (Where would Jesus have been in COVID19)
2. Lepers and other Unclean (woman with issue of blood)
3. Tax Collectors – Matthew; Zacchaeus
C. Compassion to the Downtrodden
1, Mourners – John 11 (Mary and Martha)
2. Hungry – Matthew 15:32 “I have compassion on the crowd because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. And I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way.” (Feeding 4000)
D. Compassion to the Oppressed
1. Woman caught in adultery – John 8:3-4
2. Samaritan Woman – John 4
3. Women in General – Witnesses of the Resurrection – Matthew 28:7 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead . . .
4. Crowds (Jews Oppressed by Romans) – Matthew 9:36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.
II. Jesus Expresses God’s Compassion:
A. God’s Compassion for the Lost – Luke 15
1. When We Have Lost Direction – Sheep lost, knew lost, didn’t know the way home
2. Lost Value/Completion (Woman’s Dowry) Coin (inanimate) lost, didn’t know lost
3. Loss of Identity – Son Lost, knew lost, knew way home
B. Our Compassion in the Good Samaritan -- Luke 10 – An illustration of neighborly compassion.
1. Based on Greatest Command and question of Neighbor
2. Surprise Hero
3. When we remember that everyone is created in the image of God and that God has breathed HIS breath of life into each of us we can treat others as He intends.
4. Underground Railroad//Wesleyan Church & Abolition “Avenue of the Righteous” in Jerusalem;
In March of 1943, Bulgaria, which had aligned with the Nazis, received orders from Berlin that they were to begin implementing the extermination of the Jewish people in Bulgaria and deport them to Treblinka. The King of Bulgaria and the Parliament did not want to fulfill this order, but they passed it on nonetheless. The people of Bulgaria began to wonder what would happen to their Jewish neighbors and friends. The railroad cars were lined up 100’s long and the Jewish people in 3 towns were to be gathered at the local elementary school and then placed on the trains. Plodda was one of those towns. The Jewish people were told to bring only what they could carry. They were placed behind a chain-link fence at the school and they knew what was going to happen. They began to cry out to their neighbors and tell them goodbye with tears streaming down their faces.
When he had heard the news an Orthodox Bishop named Curel came to investigate. When he saw it to be true he cried out, "Children, the Christians of this country will not allow this to happen to you. I will not allow this to happen to you. I will lay my body on these tracks and they will have to run over my body. This will not happen to you." He and the people of that town began to speak out. Others began to speak out. Several members of Parliament stood up and spoke but they were relieved of their offices and never served again in politics. But the people refused to let the trains leave.