(Our Compassionate God and Savior - Part 1 | Part 2)
The powerful of the world are not usually known for their compassion. Rather, they often use their power to oppress their subjects, sometimes in cruel and inhumane ways. Jesus, however, stands in stark contrast to those who have come before and after Him. Coming humbly, as a servant, he reached out in mercy, gentleness, and compassion.
Literally, compassion means suffering with another, having pity and sympathy for others. God is our compassionate Father and Jesus is our compassionate Savior, our King who rules with gentleness and mercy. As we watch Him move against the backdrop of the Palestinian countryside, we see His compassion every step of the way.
The Scripture: II Corinthians 1:3
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion, and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in our troubles."
1. What does Paul call God?
2. How does He describe Him?
Jesus, who shared His Father's heart of love, saw people in need through His eyes of compassion.
The Scripture: Matthew 9:36
"When He saw the crowds, He had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd."
3. How did Jesus see the people?
4. What was His response?
This compassion is evidenced throughout the Bible.
The Scripture: Psalm 116:5
"The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion."
5. How does the psalmist describe the Lord?
The Scripture: Isaiah 42:2, 3
"He will not shout or cry out, or raise His voice in the streets. A bruised reed He will not break, and a smoldering wick He will not snuff out."
6. How does Isaiah describe the coming Messiah (Jesus)?
The Scripture: Isaiah 42:6, 7
"I, the Lord, have called you in righteousness; I will...make you to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles, to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness."
7. How does God describe Him?
8. What will He do?
The Scripture: Isaiah 49:13
"The Lord comforts His people and will have compassion on His afflicted ones."
What else does Isaiah say about the Savior?
The Scripture: Lamentations 3:22, 23
"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."
9. What does the prophet say about the Lord's compassions?
10. What does he say about the Lord's faithfulness?
What beautiful pictures of our Lord in all His compassion and mercy!
There was no disease, no class of people, no problem for which Jesus did not have compassion. The real difference between Jesus and others--He not only could do something--He did it. Scripture provides clear evidence of this. Let's spend our time on this study, looking at many of His acts of compassion.
The Scripture: Matthew 4:23, 24
People brought to Him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, thenJesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people. News about Him spread all over Syria and possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed, and He healed them."
11. What did Jesus do?
Jesus' compassion was evidenced in His healing of all manners of diseases, all classes of people, even Gentiles and on the Sabbath.
The Scripture: Mark 1:40-42
"A man with leprosy came to Him and begged Him on his knees, 'If you are willing, you can make me clean.' Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man. 'I am willing,' He said, 'Be clean!' Immediately the leprosy left Him and He was cured."
12. What did this man want?
13. What did the man say?
14. What was Jesus' response?
The Scripture: Luke 17:12
"As He was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met Him. They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, 'Jesus, Master, have pity on us!' When He saw them, He said, 'Go show yourselves to the priests.' And as they went, they were cleansed."
15. Whom did Jesus meet?
16. What did they say to Jesus?
17. What did Jesus tell them to do?
18. What happened to the men?
The priests were the officials who could declare a person to be clean or unclean.
The Scripture: Matthew 12:22
"Then they (Jesus' followers) brought Him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute, and Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see."
19. What was wrong with the man brought to Jesus?
20. What did Jesus do?
The Scripture: Matthew 20:30, 34
"Two blind men were sitting by the roadside and when they heard that Jesus was going by, they shouted, 'Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us'....Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed Him."
21. What did Jesus do for the two blind men?
22. What was the result?
The Scripture: Matthew 17:14-17
"A man approached Jesus and knelt before Him. ‘Lord, have mercy on my son....He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water'....Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed from that moment."
23. What was the problem with the man's son?
24. What did Jesus do?
All Classes of People
On another occasion as Jesus approached the town gate a dead person was being carried out.
The Scripture: Luke 7:12-15
"[He was] the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. When Jesus saw her, His heart went out to her, and He said, 'Don't cry.' Then He went up and touched the coffin, and....He said, 'Young man, I say to you, "Get up!"' The dead man sat up and began to talk."
25. What happened?
In that economy a widow with no living dependents was in dire straits. If she had no one to support her, she could have been sold into slavery.
The Scripture: John 4:45-50
"There was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to Him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death....'Sir, come down before my child dies.' Jesus replied, 'You may go. Your son will live."
26. What did the royal official want?
27. What was Jesus' response?
On his way home, the man's servants met him with the news that his son was healed. Again, Jesus' compassion and His power extended healing in response to a great need.
In the second half of this study we will continue to look at Jesus' compassion in responding to the hurts of the many with whom He came in contact.
(Our Compassionate God and Savior - Part 1 | Part 2)
- The Father of compassion and the God of all comfort
- One who comforts us in our troubles
- As harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd
- He had compassion on them.
- As gracious and righteous and full of compassion
- He will not shout or cry out; He will not break a bruised reed, nor snuff out a smoldering wick.
- As a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles
- Open blind eyes, free captives and release those who sit in darkness
- He will comfort His people and have compassion on His afflicted ones. They will never fail;
- They are new each morning.
- It is great.
- He taught, preached and healed every disease and sickness; He cured those in severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures and the paralyzed.
- For Jesus to heal him
- "If you are willing, you can make me clean."
- He said, "I am willing. Be clean!' He touched the man and he was healed.
- Ten men with leprosy
- "Jesus, Master, have pity on us!"
- To show themselves to the priests
- As they went, they were cleansed of the leprosy.
- He was demon-possessed, blind and mute.
- He healed him so that he could both talk and see.
- He touched their eyes. They received their sight.
- He had seizures. He often fell into the fire or into the water.
- He rebuked the demon and the boy was immediately healed.
- The young man was the only son of a widow. Jesus' heart went out to her and He said, 'Don't cry.' He touched the coffin and said, `Get up.' The young man sat up and began to talk.
- Jesus to heal his son
- That the official could go home--his child would live
All scripture quotations in this publication are from the Holy Bible, New International Version
(unless otherwise indicated)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, New International Bible Society
Copyright © 2003 by JoAnne Sekowsky