The Thrilling Journey through Jesus’ Compassion

The Thrilling Journey through Jesus’ Compassion


In 2009, at the age of fifty-six, I spoke about “The Compassion of Christ” at my home church. Now, in 2023, at 70 years I’m revisiting and rewriting those ideas due to personal changes over the past 14 years, influenced by Jesus and the Holy Spirit. My understanding has deepened with time, prompting a revision of my thoughts in light of these transformations. I’m sharing this updated perspective, moulded by experience, revelation, and responsiveness to spiritual guidance. I approach this task with humility, acknowledging personal growth since then. The theme of Christ’s compassion, once discussed, now profoundly resonates in my life. These words reflect my evolution and extend an invitation to explore boundless compassion together. Join me in this journey of reflecting on the past while embracing the present, all shaped by divine influences.

The “core narrative” – “big Story”, if we seek to begin with one, revolves around the realisation that in Jesus Christ, we unearth a compassion that encompasses all situations, scenarios, and conditions of the heart and life.

The Compassion of Jesus Foretold.

So, let’s get to it. In the annals of eternity, the compassion of Christ shines like a resplendent beacon, guiding us through the ages of time. Imagine, for a moment if you would if you were traversing the vast expanse of eternity, witnessing the compassionate heart of our Saviour. As we journeyed, we would venture back to the very genesis of creation, we would encounter the grandeur of Christ’s pre-existence, before the universe’s first quiver. In that timeless realm, we would discover that His awesome compassion pulsated, in an unending symphony of love that spanned all of eternity past and in fact spans all of time as we understand it.

You see, and we must understand that even before the universe danced with galaxies and stars adorned the night sky, even before the Word spoke the world into existence – “Psalm 33:6”, and even before He clothed Himself in flesh – “Philippians 2:7”, the essence of Jesus’ compassion was vividly present. It existed in the realm of the trinity as divine foreknowledge, where God’s omniscience foresaw the fall of man. Long before the dawn of time, God, in His infinite wisdom, knew that the human heart, flawed and prone to sin, would require redemption.

It was clear that mankind would stumble, falling short of God’s glory yet, this divine knowledge did not catch God off guard; it was all part of His sovereign plan. In His infinite mercy and love, God purposed to send a Saviour to reconcile humanity to Himself, to bridge the chasm between Heaven and Earth. This Saviour, the second Adam, as Scripture calls Him was to be a new hope for a fallen race, free from the taint of sin.

In the corridors of eternity, God saw the inherent sinfulness in every human heart, for we all bear the DNA of the first Adam, our common parent. Our natural inclination toward sin was never a surprise to God; He anticipated it all. Thus, in His great love and compassion, He preordained the solution: “1 John 14:14” His own Son, Jesus Christ, who would be the Saviour of the world.

The Apostle Paul reveals this truth with crystal clarity in “1 Corinthians 15:45” – “And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.”, where he draws a profound parallel between the first Adam and the last Adam, Jesus Christ. The first Adam, through his fall, brought sin and death into the world, and in him, we all die. However, the last Adam, Jesus Christ, was the quickening spirit, the One who brings life and redemption to all who believe in Him.

So, even before the foundation of the world, God, in His infinite compassion, foresaw the need for a Saviour, a Redeemer who would stand in the gap for humanity, offering the gift of salvation. And who else could fulfil this role but God’s own Son, Jesus Christ, who shared the divine essence of the trinity from eternity past?

The Compassion of Jesus in the Manger

Who is Jesus?

The Bible makes it clear that Jesus was not a mere human prophet or an angelic messenger; He was and is the very Word of God, who was with God and was God from the beginning. As the Gospel of John eloquently declares, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning” – “John 1:1-2.”

Imagine the awe-inspiring scene in the courts of Heaven when Jesus, as the eternal Word, made the ultimate decision to step into time and space, to take on human flesh, and to dwell among us as one of us. Imagine, all the hosts of Heaven contemplating and trying to understand the events that were beginning to unfold. This cosmic event, veiled in mystery and clothed in humility, is known as the Incarnation – the moment when God became flesh and walked among His creation. Never before had this occurred.

The Son of God, Jesus the Word Incarnate, as we understand clearly from the writers of the Bible, did not make His entrance into the world with royal processions, fanfare, or dazzling fireworks. No, His arrival was marked by the profound simplicity of a vulnerable infant, born in the obscure town of Bethlehem. The splendour of Heaven exchanged for the fragility of human infancy; the Almighty Creator wrapped in swaddling clothes.

Imagine the angels, who had worshipped Him since the dawn of time, now witnessing their King being cradled in a lowly manger, heralded not by earthly kings but by shepherds in the fields. In the humblest of settings, God’s compassion was on full display – love incarnate, a divine embrace reaching out to humanity’s deepest needs.

During His time on Earth, Jesus unveiled the essence of compassion in all its magnificent beauty. He personified love in its most unadulterated state, offering mercy to the suffering, extending mercy to the afflicted, healing the sick, and comforting the broken-hearted and consoling the shattered. Each tear shed by another prompted a sympathetic response from His eyes. Every plea for assistance prompted a moment of consideration from the sovereign Saviour and King of Kings, who would inquire, “What can I do for you?” – “Mark 10:51.”

Scriptures tell us that Jesus took our sicknesses and carried our sorrows – “Isaiah 53:3-5.” His empathy knew no bounds as He identified with the human experience, tasting our grief and pain, yet remaining sinless and blameless. If we considered His life like a tapestry, we would see it woven with threads of compassion, and every stitch would and still does tell a story of love and mercy.

Consider how the tapestry speaks to us.

The Woman at the Well – A Thirst Quenched with Compassion.

In the pages of the Gospel of John, we encounter the captivating encounter between Jesus and the Samaritan woman at the well “John 4:1-42.” This woman, burdened by the weight of her past and societal rejection, ventured to the well at an unusual hour, perhaps to avoid the prying eyes and scornful whispers of others. As Jesus sat by the well, wearied from His journey, He initiated a conversation with her, asking for a drink. Despite the cultural divide and the animosity between Jews and Samaritans, Jesus disregarded these barriers and extended His compassionate heart to her. He looked beyond her ethnicity, her past, and her social standing, seeing instead a soul thirsting for something more profound than water.

In the course of their conversation, Jesus gently revealed her need for living water – the eternal source of life and satisfaction that only He could provide. He saw her brokenness, her longing for love, and her search for fulfilment in relationships that left her thirsting for more. And in response, Jesus offered her the water of life, quenching not only her physical thirst but also her spiritual thirst for love and acceptance.

The compassion of Christ overflowed, breaking through the barriers of prejudice and judgment. He met her where she was, acknowledged her pain, and offered her hope, transforming her life forever. As she encountered the boundless compassion of Christ, the woman left her water jar behind and ran to share the good news with her fellow Samaritans, becoming an instrument of Christ’s compassion herself.

The Man with the Withered Hand – Compassion that Heals.

In another profound display of compassion, Jesus encountered a man with a withered hand in the synagogue remember him. “Mark 3:1-6” – “Matthew 12:9-13.” The Pharisees, driven by their rigid legalism, watched closely to see if Jesus would heal the man on the Sabbath, which they considered unlawful. Knowing their thoughts, Jesus stood undeterred by their expectations and moved with compassion. He invited the man to step forward, disregarding the judgmental stares of the religious leaders. With His eyes filled with love, Jesus reached out and healed the withered hand, restoring both physical wholeness and dignity to the man.

In this act of compassion, Jesus challenged the heartlessness of religious legalism, demonstrating that love and mercy supersede religious rules. His profound act of healing emphasised that the Sabbath was meant for good and compassion, not for cold, rigid adherence to tradition.

The Man Healed as the Four Friends Carried Him to Jesus – Compassion in Action.

Among the many miracles performed by Jesus, the account of the man healed as four friends carried him to Jesus stands as a remarkable example of compassion in action “Mark 2:1-12.” Here we have a paralysed man, unable to walk, laying on his mat while his friends carried him to a house where Jesus was preaching. When they arrived, the crowd was so dense that they couldn’t get inside.

Undeterred by the obstacles, the friends displayed unwavering determination to bring their paralysed companion before Jesus. They climbed onto the roof, removed the tiles, and lowered the mat with the paralysed man down to where Jesus stood. Witnessing their faith and compassion, Jesus marvelled at their efforts. This act of love and friendship demonstrated that Christ’s compassion extends beyond individuals to encompass communities, families, and friendships.

And there are many more examples and just through these few we see that throughout His life, Jesus’ compassion was not a fleeting emotion, subject to the passing whims of the moment. It was a constant and unwavering current that flowed from the very essence of His being. It was the force that propelled Him to seek out the lost, to touch the untouchable, and to embrace the broken-hearted – and I might add “Still does.”

Consider these other examples.

The blind men, sitting by the wayside begging, cried out to Jesus in desperation – “Matthew 9:27-31” and in their darkness, they found a glimmer of hope in the radiant compassion that emanated from the Saviour. Jesus stopped in His tracks, amid the tumultuous crowd, and reached out with unwavering love to touch their sightless eyes. In an instant, darkness gave way to light as they received their sight.

The leper, shunned and isolated, came to Jesus with trembling faith, confessing, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean” – “Mark 1:41.” Although the leper believed in Jesus’ power to heal, doubt clouded his heart regarding the Saviour’s willingness. Yet, compassion knows no hesitation, no prejudice was present here. Jesus’ heart responded with tenderness, declaring, “I will; be clean,” and the leper was instantly healed.

The individuals plagued by demons in “Mark 1:25-27” – “Luke 4:51-56” – “Mark 5:1-20” defied the typical expectations of compassion recipients. Yet, Christ’s compassion transcended limitations, stirring within Him a deep and genuine empathy. Even in the absence of apparent faith, Jesus’ boundless love penetrated the shadows, liberating the tormented soul from the clutches of demons.

The Greatest Expression of the Compassion of Jesus.

Even as Jesus displayed unparalleled compassion during His earthly life, the ultimate expression of His love was yet to come. As the Scriptures foretold, “He trod the winepress of the wrath of God alone” – “Isaiah 63:3.” Stripped of His garments and hung upon the cross, Jesus bore the weight of the world’s sin and shame. The cross, an instrument of death and suffering, became the altar of mercy where the compassion of Christ flowed forth like a torrential river.

On the cross, Jesus exemplified the depth of His compassion, as He endured unimaginable pain, scorn, and rejection for the sake of a fallen humanity – you and me before we were adopted into the family of God. “He was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes, we are healed” – “Isaiah 53:5.”

While enduring the agonizing crucifixion, the Son of God’s heart uttered a plea of intercession, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” as recounted in “Luke 23:34.” In the midst of unbearable pain, compassion overcame judgment, animosity, and bitterness, and His wounded heart radiated forgiveness.

The compassionate heart of Christ reached its climax on that historic day when the Saviour rose from the dead, conquering death and securing victory over sin. His resurrection power became the anthem of hope for all who put their faith in Him. As the Apostle Peter proclaimed on the Day of Pentecost, “This Jesus God raised, and of that, we all are witnesses” – “Acts 2:32.”

Having ascended to the right hand of God, Jesus now sits enthroned in majesty and power. Yet, His heart remains tender and compassionate toward His people. He continues to intercede for us, pleading our cause before the Father, and sending the Holy Spirit to comfort and guide us.

Having ascended to the exalted position at the right hand of God, Jesus now occupies a throne of unrivalled majesty and omnipotent power. Yet, the grandeur of His position hasn’t hardened His heart; instead, it continues to beat with tenderness and compassion that knows no equal. Even as He reigns in the fullness of His authority, His love for His people remains as soft and empathetic as ever.

In this divine role, Jesus assumes the sacred responsibility of intercession on our behalf. He tirelessly pleads our cause before the Father, offering His own flawless righteousness as a counterbalance to our flaws. His advocacy is not merely a detached duty but a heartfelt act of compassion, ensuring that our needs and shortcomings are presented in the light of His redemptive sacrifice.

Furthermore, the benevolent reach of His compassion extends to the gift of the Holy Spirit. He, the Comforter, is dispatched to walk beside us in our earthly journeys. This Spirit provides solace in times of distress, guidance in moments of uncertainty, and a persistent reminder of Christ’s abiding presence.

In this way, the compassionate heart of Jesus remains an unwavering source of reassurance and hope. From His lofty throne, He continues to pour forth a love that is as tender as it is powerful, as merciful as it is majestic.

In the grand tapestry of Christ’s compassion, the Book of Hebrews unveils the eternal nature of this intercession. “He is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them” – “Hebrews 7:25.” Jesus’ ministry of compassion does not cease; it extends across the ages, enveloping every moment of human history.

The Compassion of Jesus of Jesus is not Bound.

The compassion embodied by Jesus knows no bounds. It defies confinement to specific moments or locations. It transcends the barriers of culture, societal norms, and eras in history. His boundless love, mercy, and grace extend to every corner of the globe, embracing people of every tribe, nation, and language.

Jesus, moved by compassion, continues to be present within His Church. He resides among His people, perpetually reaching out to the broken-hearted and offering solace to the weary. His presence remains active, guiding us toward truth, bestowing spiritual gifts, and equipping us for the mission He has entrusted to us.

The compassionate heart of Jesus inspires us to emulate His path, to serve as vessels of His love, and to extend His mercy to a world in pain. As we delve into the Scriptures, we uncover the call to mirror our Saviour’s actions in every facet of our lives. His compassion propels us to engage with those who are lost, to extend care to the vulnerable, and to uplift those who are downtrodden.

Echoing the words of the Apostle Paul, we are summoned to be “imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” – “Ephesians 5:1-2.” And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. By mirroring His compassion, we become living testaments of His love, mercy, and grace.

In a world characterised by flux and fleeting trends, where circumstances shift like sand, one element stands unwavering – the compassion of Christ. It is an eternal truth, a bedrock upon which we stand, and an unwavering hope that fortifies us even in our darkest moments.

Conclusion – Compassion in Our Journey of Faith.

The compassion of Christ is a guiding light that beckons us on a thrilling journey of faith. As we immerse ourselves in the accounts of the Woman at the Well, the Man with the Withered Hand, and the Man healed by his friends, and others we witness the beauty of Christ’s compassion in action.

Just as Jesus saw the deepest needs of the Samaritan woman, the paralysed man, and the man with the withered hand, He sees us – every tear, every heartache, every longing. He invites us to come to Him, to drink from the wellspring of His compassion, and to experience the transformative power of His love.

As we journey through life, let’s respond to the compassion of Christ with open hearts and hands extended to others. Let us be like the Samaritan woman, carrying the living water to those who are spiritually thirsty. Let’s be like Jesus, looking beyond societal norms and prejudices to see the brokenness of others and offering them healing and hope.

And like the four friends who carried their paralysed companion to Jesus, let’s demonstrate our faith through acts of compassion. Let us reach out to those who cannot walk, lifting them and carrying them to the feet of our Saviour, where they too can experience His life-changing love.

May the compassion of Christ resonate in every aspect of our lives, shaping our thoughts, words, and actions. Let’s be living epistles of His love, testifying to the world that the Saviour who walked among us in the distant past is still present, still compassionate, and still extending the invitation to all: “Come unto me, and I will give you rest.” – “Matthew 11:28-29.

As we respond to His call, our lives will become a thrilling symphony of compassion, an echo of Heaven’s grand design, proclaiming the beauty and power of the compassion of Christ throughout eternity. So, let’s embark on this journey of faith, living out His love and grace, and letting His compassion be the anthem of our hearts.

As we walk this thrilling journey through the compassion of Christ, let us remember that the compassion we receive from Him is not to be hoarded but shared. It is not merely a gift to be received but a calling to be lived out.

As we journey on, let us extend the invitation to all and let our battle cry be:

  • Come and experience the compassion of Christ.
  • Come and find rest for your soul.
  • Come and be a part of this thrilling expedition of love and grace.

And together, as recipients and ambassadors of His compassion, let’s together change the world one act of love at a time. Let’s be living testimonies of the enduring and life-changing compassion of our Saviour, Jesus Christ, who was and is and is to come.

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