WHERE IS YOUR COMPASSION?

BY PASTOR T. O. BANSO

More than ever before, human society is becoming increasingly competitive and life is becoming excessively a survival of the fittest. Men and women are losing their compassion; more people are becoming more self-centred or selfish, and insensitive to others. It is unfortunate that even children of God are losing their compassion contrary to the Word of God.

The Holman Bible Dictionary defines compassion thus: “To feel passion with someone, to enter sympathetically into their sorrow and pain.” The Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary defines compassion as “Literally, suffering with another; a sensation of sorrow excited by the distress or misfortunes of another; pity; commiseration.” Similarly, the Oxford Learner’s Dictionary defines compassion as “a strong feeling of sympathy for people who are suffering and a desire to help them.”

Generally, compassion refers to pity, sympathy, and mercy, and help rendered to people who are in need. Compassion is part of the character or attributes of God. Psalm 86:15 says, “But You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering and abundant in mercy and truth” (NKJV).  If you are a child of God you should be compassionate to people.

Psalm 111:4b also speaks of the compassion of God thus: “The LORD is gracious and full of compassion” (NKJV). Psalm 145:8 also points out the compassion of God thus, “The Lord is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love” (NLT). As I have already said, mercy is one of the synonyms of compassion, and God is a God of mercy; He is a merciful God. The Bible says of the LORD, “The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease” (Lamentation 3:22 NLT).

The compassionate God expects His children to be as compassionate as Himself. The God of compassion expects Christians to be more compassionate than non-believers. “You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate” (Luke 6:36 NLT). That is not the reality today. Where is your compassion? We, as Christians, read the Word of God and quote the Word of God, but where is our compassion? We even preach the Word of God and go on evangelism, but where is our compassion? It is unfortunate that there are many Christians, and even preachers today, who lack compassion – the type of compassion that Jesus showed and demands from His followers today.

Jesus’ show of compassion

Jesus did His ministry with compassion. Many times, we read that Jesus, moved with compassion, healed one person or the other. Compassion is the key that unlocks miracles. The LORD cannot use us to minister to people we don’t have compassion for. Compassion will move you to intercede for somebody; compassion will move you to take care of his needs. Jesus was moved with compassion and we ought to be like Him, too. “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd” (Matthew 9:36 NLT). Do you have such a feeling for people when you see them in a similar condition? Do you feel bothered enough to want to help them? “Jesus saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick” (Matthew 14:14 NLT). Mark 6:34 says, “Jesus saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things” (NLT).

The Greek word used each time the Bible talks about Jesus being moved with compassion is splangchnizomai. It means, to be moved as to one’s bowels, to be moved with compassion, have compassion.” We find the use of this word, for example in Luke 10:33; 15:20; Matthew 9:36; 14:14, 15:32; 20:34 among others. There are also other Hebrew and Greek words which mean compassion and similar words.

What is your motivating  force in ministry? Is it ego, pride, popularity, or money? What is driving the good deeds you are doing? Is it compassion or desire for fame? “Moved with compassion, Jesus reached out and touched him. ‘I am willing,’ he said. ‘Be healed!’ Instantly the leprosy disappeared, and the man was healed” (Mark 1:41 NLT). Jesus was moved with compassion. Jesus healed the two blind men in Jericho, who were shouting “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!” out of his compassion for them. He touched their eyes and they could see instantly!  (Matthew 20:29-33).

The widow of Nain was also a beneficiary of the compassion of Jesus; Jesus didn’t raise her only son back to life because he wanted to be popular. He was moved by compassion.  “Soon afterward Jesus went with his disciples to the village of Nain, and a large crowd followed him.  A funeral procession was coming out as he approached the village gate. The young man who had died was a widow’s only son, and a large crowd from the village was with her. When the Lord saw her, his heart overflowed with compassion. ‘Don’t cry!’ he said. Then he walked over to the coffin and touched it, and the bearers stopped. ‘Young man,’ he said, ‘I tell you, get up.’ Then the dead boy sat up and began to talk! And Jesus gave him back to his mother” (Luke 7:11-15 NLT). The Bible says Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him (Acts 10:38).  He did all out of compassion.

The Samaritan’s show of compassion

How much compassion do you have for the hurting, the injured, etc.? Jesus told a story which underscores how pastors and Christians can lack compassion. That story depicts the condition of many of us today. We have become callous and insensitive to the pain, suffering, sickness, poverty, etc. all around us.  Hear what Jesus said: “Jesus replied with a story: ‘A Jewish man was traveling on a trip from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him up, and left him half dead beside the road. By chance a priest came along. But when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by. A Temple assistant walked over and looked at him lying there, but he also passed by on the other side. Then a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw the man, he felt compassion for him. Going over to him, the Samaritan soothed his wounds with olive oil and wine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, ‘Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I’ll pay you the next time I’m here.’ ‘Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?’ Jesus asked. The man replied, ‘The one who showed him mercy’” (Luke 10:30-37 NLT). Did you see that?

I’ll describe the priest in the story as the pastor and the Temple assistant as the Christian or church worker. Unfortunately, they claimed to be children of God, who knew God and were very close to God, but they lacked the compassion of God. Despite the fact that they were Jews, they could not show compassion to a fellow Jewish man who was in pain after being attacked by armed robbers. What an irony! It was a despised Samaritan, who did not have the kind of religious credentials that the priest and the temple assistant prided themselves in, who showed compassion to the wounded Jewish man. That was despite the fact that the Jews and Samaritans discriminated against each other.

The disciples’ lack of compassion

The Christianity we practise should not be without compassion. We should have compassion for those who are suffering or in pain or those who need help. Compassion will make you want to provide a solution to the problem of somebody else and not just talk or gossip about it.

When Jesus left Galilee and went to the region of Tyre and Sidon, a Gentile region, a Canaanite woman came to Him begging Him to have mercy on her and heal her daughter. She was demon-possessed and being severely tormented.

Jesus didn’t answer the woman, apparently because He wanted to test her faith. The woman’s response showed her faith, which Jesus commended was great. He granted her request (Matthew 15:21-28). But the attitude of the disciples of Jesus to this woman before Jesus healed her daughter showed they were not compassionate. Verse 23 says, “And His disciples came and urged Him, saying, ‘Send her away, for she cries out after us’” (NKJV). I imagine how they felt when Jesus commended the woman’s faith and granted her request. Show compassion to others.

In Luke 9:51-56, we see two of the disciples of Jesus not showing compassion, which they should have learnt from the Master, and Jesus rebuked them. “Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem, and sent messengers before His face. And as they went, they entered a village of the Samaritans, to prepare for Him. But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem. And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, ‘Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?’ But He turned and rebuked them, and said, ‘You do not know what manner of spirit you are of. For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.’ And they went to another village” (Luke 9:51-56 NKJV).

Can you imagine that! Pastors calling down fire to destroy those they should be working towards their salvation! Jesus scolded the saying “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of” (Luke 9:55b NKJV). This is not the only time we see the disciples of Jesus, who we can call ministers today disciples, not showing compassion and Jesus, because of His compassion, overruled them. Look at this: “One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could touch and bless them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him. When Jesus saw what was happening, he was angry with his disciples. He said to them, ‘Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children. ‘I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it’ Then he took the children in his arms and placed his hands on their heads and blessed them” (Mark 10:13-16 NLT). The disciples had no compassion for even children! Do you have compassion for children or you see them as a burden?

Gehazi’s lack of compassion

In 2 Kings 4:24-27, we see how Gehazi, another minister-in-training, lacked compassion and was also overruled by his compassionate master, who understood that the Shunammite woman was in pain and should not be pushed away as Gehazi did.  “But when she came to the man of God at the mountain, she fell to the ground before him and caught hold of his feet. Gehazi began to push her away, but the man of God said, ‘Leave her alone. She is deeply troubled, but the Lord has not told me what it is’” (verse 27 NLT).

The unforgiving servant’s lack of compassion

The parable of the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18:21-35 shows a servant, who, after enjoying the compassion of the king, who forgave him his huge debt, did not forgive a fellow servant who owed him a far lesser debt, but threw him into prison.

Hear what the king said to the unforgiving servant: “Then the king called in the man he had forgiven and said, ‘You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous debt because you pleaded with me. Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?’ Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt” (verses 32-34 NLT).

You are not to blame if people abuse your compassion. “For even Christ didn’t please himself. As the Scriptures say, ‘Those who insult you are also insulting me’” (Romans 15:3 NLT). God does not overlook the compassion you show to people, and He takes note of those who abuse your compassion.

In 2 Chronicles 36:15-17, we have an example of people who abused the compassion God had on them and God dealt with that appropriately. “The Lord, the God of their ancestors, repeatedly sent his prophets to warn them, for he had compassion on his people and his Temple. But the people mocked these messengers of God and despised their words. They scoffed at the prophets until the Lord’s anger could no longer be restrained and nothing could be done. So the Lord brought the king of Babylon against them. The Babylonians killed Judah’s young men, even chasing after them into the Temple. They had no pity on the people, killing both young men and young women, the old and the infirm. God handed all of them over to Nebuchadnezzar” (NLT).

They abused the compassion of God until there was no remedy for them; God handed them over to the Babylonians who also did not have compassion for them. They mocked God’s compassion and God rewarded them with no compassion. You cannot ridicule the compassion of God and hope to enjoy the compassion of men!

If some people abuse your compassion, don’t let that stop you from showing compassion to others. God knows how to deal with such abusers of your compassion. Don’t lose your compassion.

Whom does God want you to show compassion? The Bible answers this question for us.

1. Show compassion to the sinners – the spiritually blind. In Mark 1:40-45, Jesus healed a man of leprosy. Leprosy is a symbol of sin and uncleanliness. “Now a leper came to Him, imploring Him, kneeling down to Him and saying to Him, ‘If You are willing, You can make me clean.’ Then Jesus, moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, ‘I am willing; be cleansed.’ As soon as He had spoken, immediately the leprosy left him, and he was cleansed” (Mark 1:40-42 NKJV).

When you see sinners in their filthiness, do you have compassion for them or condemn them? If you do the latter, then you must have forgotten you were in that state before. “Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else. But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)  For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:1-7 NLT).

In Matthew 20:30-34, Jesus responded to the cry of the two blind men in Jericho, and had mercy on them; He opened their eyes. Sinners are blind and need your compassion, not your condemnation. Preach the gospel to them with compassion; intercede for them with compassion that God would open their eyes. “Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God” (2 Corinthians 4:4 NLT).

2. Show compassion to the repentant person. It is one thing to have compassion for the sinner; it is another thing to have compassion for the repentant sinner. When people repent of their sins, God expects that we have compassion for them. Such compassion makes one forgive a repentant person his sin. Luke 15:20 says, “And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him” (NKJV).

The father of the prodigal son did not hold his sin against him; rather, he welcomed him back home and threw a party for him. The man’s action is in line with the story Jesus told earlier in the same chapter. “If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them gets lost, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others in the wilderness and go to search for the one that is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he will joyfully carry it home on his shoulders. When he arrives, he will call together his friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!” (Luke 15:4-7 NLT).

We need to cultivate the kind of forgiving spirit God has. God’s compassion forgives the repentant sinner. He does not count his sin against him. “Where is another God like you, who pardons the guilt of the remnant, overlooking the sins of his special people? You will not stay angry with your people forever, because you delight in showing unfailing love. Once again you will have compassion on us. You will trample our sins under your feet and throw them into the depths of the ocean!” (Micah 7:18-19 NLT).

 It is in the character of God to have compassion on repentant sinners. God loves the sinner but hates their sins. He is more willing to forgive the sinner than they are willing to repent of their sins. “Now this is what the Lord says: ‘I will uproot from their land all the evil nations reaching out for the possession I gave my people Israel. And I will uproot Judah from among them. But afterward I will return and have compassion on all of them. I will bring them home to their own lands again, each nation to its own possession’” (Jeremiah 12:14-15 NLT).

God is a God of compassion, so also should His children be. “For no one is abandoned by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he also shows compassion because of the greatness of his unfailing love. For he does not enjoy hurting people or causing them sorrow” (Lamentation 3:31-32 NLT). We must avoid sitting in judgment over repentant sinners. We must gently work on their restoration. “If at that time you and your children return to the Lord your God, and if you obey with all your heart and all your soul all the commands I have given you today, then the Lord your God will restore your fortunes. He will have mercy on you and gather you back from all the nations where he has scattered you. Even though you are banished to the ends of the earth, the Lord your God will gather you from there and bring you back again. The Lord your God will return you to the land that belonged to your ancestors, and you will possess that land again. Then he will make you even more prosperous and numerous than your ancestors!” (Deuteronomy 30:2-4 NLT). This should be our attitude to repentant sinners.

3. Show compassion to believers whose faith is weak. You should not ridicule these people; they need help for restoration “And you must show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives” (Jude 22-23 NLT).

1 Thessalonians 5:14 says we should encourage those who are timid, take tender care of those who are weak, and be patient with everyone. We are not all at the same level of faith. God wants those whose faith is strong to help those whose faith is weak. We are all members of the same body and whatever affects one part affects the others.

Apostle Paul was sensitive to the condition of the weak everywhere he went and ministered to them from their point of weakness. “When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some” (1 Corinthians 9:22 NLT). This should be our attitude, rather than showing our superior knowledge or showing a complex.

Paul warned, “But you must be careful so that your freedom does not cause others with a weaker conscience to stumble. For if others see you—with your ‘superior knowledge’—eating in the temple of an idol, won’t they be encouraged to violate their conscience by eating food that has been offered to an idol? So because of your superior knowledge, a weak believer for whom Christ died will be destroyed. And when you sin against other believers by encouraging them to do something they believe is wrong, you are sinning against Christ. So if what I eat causes another believer to sin, I will never eat meat again as long as I live—for I don’t want to cause another believer to stumble” (1 Corinthians 8:9-13 NLT).

4. Show compassion to the wounded or those in pain. The story of the Jewish man in Luke 10:30-37, who was attacked by armed robbers, shows us we should show compassion to those who are wounded physically, emotionally, etc.

In the story, the priest and the Temple assistant failed to show compassion while the Samaritan did. He gave the Jewish man first aid treatment and took him to the hospital, paying the bill despite the differences between the Samaritans and the Jews. That is what God expects His children to do.

5. Show compassion to those who are weeping and sorrowing. Luke 7:11-17 records how Jesus had compassion on the widow of Nain and brought back to life her only son being taken for burial. “Now it happened, the day after, that He went into a city called Nain; and many of His disciples went with Him, and a large crowd. And when He came near the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother; and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the city was with her. When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, ‘Do not weep.’ Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, ‘Young man, I say to you, arise.’ So he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother. Then fear came upon all, and they glorified God, saying, ‘A great prophet has risen up among us’; and, ‘God has visited His people. And this report about Him went throughout all Judea and all the surrounding region” (NKJV). Please note that verse 13 says Jesus had compassion on her. This was what moved Him to comfort the woman not to cry and He eventually brought the son back to life.

That is exactly how God expects us to feel when people are sorrowing, whether they are Christians or not. They don’t have to be your relations or church members. You don’t have to know them before. Jesus never knew this woman from anywhere; yet, his heart was filled with compassion for her. The Bible says rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn (Romans 12:15).

6. Show compassion to the distressed or dejected. Don’t live a selfish life. In Romans 15:2, the Bible says, “Each of us needs to look after the good of the people around us, asking ourselves, ‘How can I help?’”(The Message).

Be interested in those who are confused and helpless. The LORD can use you to deliver them from this work of Satan.

Matthew 9:36-38 says, “But when He [Jesus] saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest’” (NKJV).

The condition of these people attracted Jesus’ compassion. Show compassion to those around you who are confused and helpless. Don’t ignore them. Show them the love of Christ through the practical demonstration of compassion by ministering to them. Don’t just preach the Word of God; balance it with your acts of compassion. In Acts 3, we see how God used Peter and John to help a helpless lame person out of his negative condition. Because of this, they were brought before the Sanhedrin.

See a portion of their defence before the Sanhedrin: “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, ‘Rulers of the people and elders of Israel: If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well,  let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole” (Acts 4:8-10 NKJV). Did you see how Peter described the lame that was healed? He called him “a helpless man.” I believe Peter and John believed God for his healing because of their compassion for him. Don’t forget Jesus was always moved by compassion to do the miracles He did during His earthly ministry.

7. Show compassion to those who are bound by Satan or possessed by demons. Compassion unlocks the supernatural power of God for deliverance from the power of the devil. Mark 16:17 says, “These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name…” (NLT). Jesus has given believers power over Satan and demons, and when we act upon this Word in faith, we shall get the result promised. The early apostles experienced this. Hear what Mark 16:20 says: “And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen” (NKJV).

8. Show compassion to the sick. This includes spiritual and physical sickness. Matthew 14:14 says, “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick” (NKJV).

Jesus has sent those who believe in Him to minister to the sick, and you have a part in that commission if you are born again. “And then he told them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone. Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned. These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak in new languages. They will be able to handle snakes with safety, and if they drink anything poisonous, it won’t hurt them. They will be able to place their hands on the sick, and they will be healed” (Mark 16:15-18 NLT). We must be moved by compassion to minister to them, pray for them, and so on. Jesus ministered to the sick out of compassion.

9. Show compassion to those without a shepherd. Those without a shepherd have no guidance; they have no one to care for them or lead them aright. They are ignorant and need teaching to straighten out things in their lives. It is not your business to criticize them or laugh at their ignorance. You are not better than they are; it is the mercy of the LORD that opened your eyes and heart to what you know. Mark 6:34 says, “And Jesus, when He came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd. So He began to teach them many things” (NKJV).

You need to be considerate and patient to spend time with those who are like sheep without a shepherd. Your assignment, as a Christian or a minister of the gospel, includes teaching them. “Jesus came and told his disciples, ‘I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:18-20 NLT).

10. Show compassion to babies. Here I‘m talking about the little ones in the faith (spiritual babies) and physical babies. “When the princess opened it, she saw the baby. The little boy was crying, and she felt sorry for him. ‘This must be one of the Hebrew children,’ she said” (Exodus 2:6 NLT). The princess in this scripture was Pharaoh’s daughter.

The baby, Moses, was one of the Hebrew male children Pharaoh wanted the Egyptian midwives to kill at birth. “And a man of the house of Levi went and took as wife a daughter of Levi.  So the woman conceived and bore a son. And when she saw that he was a beautiful child, she hid him three months. But when she could no longer hide him, she took an ark of bulrushes for him, daubed it with asphalt and pitch, put the child in it, and laid it in the reeds by the river’s bank”(NKJV)

When the daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the river and saw the baby in the basket among the reeds by the riverbank, she was compassionate and took possession of the baby. She spared his life. Compare this to the attitude of Herod. He was a callous king; he ordered the killing of children two years old and under. “Herod was furious when he realized that the wise men had outwitted him. He sent soldiers to kill all the boys in and around Bethlehem who were two years old and under, based on the wise men’s report of the star’s first appearance. Herod’s brutal action fulfilled what God had spoken through the prophet Jeremiah: ‘A cry was heard in Ramah—weeping and great mourning. Rachel weeps for her children, refusing to be comforted, for they are dead’” (Matthew 2:16-18 NLT). What a wicked king!

He had no compassion for children. Unfortunately, there are still many people like Herod and Pharaoh today, including the abortionists and their clients! They have no respect for the sanctity of life. It is a sin not only against the destinies of these unborn babies, but also against God.

As I said previously, the disciples of Jesus, on one occasion, showed lack of compassion for children. Compare their action to that of Jesus. Hear Matthew’s account of the incident  in Mark 10:13-16. “Some children were brought to Jesus so he could lay his hands on them and pray for them. The disciples told them not to bother him. But Jesus said, ‘Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to such as these.’ And he put his hands on their heads and blessed them before he left” (Matthew 19:13-15 NLT).

I wouldn’t know why the disciples behaved like this. But consistent with His character, Jesus overruled them. This is a lesson for us all. We should have regard for children. We should have compassion for them. We should integrate them into all that we do in the family, in the church, in the society and in the world.

The teaching of Jesus shows the high regard He has for children. “Then He took a little child and set him in the midst of them. And when He had taken him in His arms, He said to them,  ‘Whoever receives one of these little children in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me, receives not Me but Him who sent Me’” (Mark 9:36-37 NKJV). Isaiah 49:15 speaks of the compassion of a mother on the son of her womb. We must have compassion on children and not be like the disciples of Jesus who didn’t want them to get close to Jesus.

Don’t see children as a burden or a distraction. They are God’s gift and your children represent your future on the earth. “Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him” (Psalm 127:3 NLT). Don’t be like Herod who slew children or Pharaoh who ordered the Hebrew male children should be killed at birth. Don’t kill them physically, emotionally, or spiritually.

11. Show compassion to fellow believers, especially those in need. 1 Peter 3:8a says we should have compassion for each other. We should not treat each other callously. The Bible says that we should show compassion especially to Christian brothers and sisters who are needy. “We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters.If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love be in that person?” (1 John 3:16-17 NLT).

Conclusion: The compassion I’ve talked about in this message is not just feeling or saying sorry to somebody. It goes beyond this. It includes an urgent desire to alleviate or mitigate the suffering or pain of people or spare them. This kind of bowel of compassion moves one to do whatever is possible for one to do to assist the person needing help.

Compassion will take something from you. It may take your time, your effort, your money, etc. It may inconvenience you, but know surely that compassion is a seed and you are going to have your harvest in due season. You cannot show mercy to people and not reap mercy, too

In Exodus 33:19b, God says He will show mercy to anyone He chooses, and He will show compassion to anyone He chooses. However, Matthew 5:7 says, “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy” (NKJV). The Old Testament records this truth also. “With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful” (2 Samuel 22:26a; Psalm 18:25a NKJV). The converse is also true. “For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy” (James 2:13a NKJV).

I need to stress that as you seek to show compassion to people, you should be led by the Holy Spirit, because the Bible says the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it? (Jeremiah 17:9). The Holy Spirit may not want you to get involved in some matters. For instance, some people may not be sincere.

In addition, because the human society is governed by the law, ensure that, as you show compassion to people, you don’t violate the law. Some people failed to take note of this and in the process of showing compassion to people ran into trouble. They had a good intention, but they acted contrary to the law. We must act legally as we show compassion to people. As it is often said, ignorance of the law is not an excuse. Be conscious of the law and obey it as you show compassion. As you generously sow (show) compassion, you can rest assured that an overflowing harvest of compassion is waiting for you.

TAKE ACTION!

If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.

Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.

I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The LORD be with you.

T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
WhatsApp No: +2349081295947
Email: cedarministryintl@yahoo.com,
cedarministryng@gmail.com
Website: www.cedarministry.org