Compassion, Anger and Grief
And Jesus, moved with compassion…

I call the Gospel of Mark, which was the first gospel to be written down, the emotional gospel. Mark tended to include in his narrative a bit of the emotions Jesus expressed in certain situations.

In the first chapter of Mark in verse forty-one, we see that Jesus was “moved with compassion” when He healed a leper. Then in chapter three, He heals a man with a withered hand, in spite of the withering disapproval of the religious leadership who were incapable of producing the compassion that identifies anyone with the God of love and mercy.

Mark tells us that Jesus looked upon these ones with “anger,” which was the result of the grief He experienced because of the “hardness of their hearts.” The Pharisees would rather see someone continue to suffer, rather than violate what they had misconstrued as the law of God.

The Pharisees, though outwardly religious, were inwardly void of any of the qualities that would allow them to be pleasing in the eyes of God. They were focused on the externals of religion and neglected what was really important to God, “judgment, mercy and faith,” (Matthew 23:23). They used religion as a means to control others and inflate their egos and amass wealth through dishonest monetary exchanges associated with the temple services. Jesus did not hesitate to overturn their tables of corruption and expose them. Neither should we.

In these verses we are shown the contrast between One who possess a genuine heart of compassion with those in religious service who couldn’t care less. Jesus was angered and grieved by these religious ones.

Let’s pray that we never emulate those religious leaders and cause our Lord to look at us with anger, and be grieved with us because of a lack of compassion toward any that the Lord came to heal and save.

Copyright 2019 by H. D. Shively

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