New Hope Church

Day 11 – Lenten Devotional


Jesus Has a Heart of Compassion

Mark 6:34  “When Jesus went ashore, He saw a large crowd, and He felt compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them many things.”

Scripture tells us that Jesus “felt compassion.”  When He came upon situations that touched His heart of mercy, He did something about it because of His great love for others.  In the gospel of Mark Jesus “felt compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd.”  The people around Him were hungry for the words of life that the Son of God had to give; in need of a shepherd, searching for a shepherd, drawn to THE shepherd.

Sheep without a shepherd are the opposite of the sheep in Psalm 23. They will not find the greenest grass to satisfy them, nor will they stumble upon refreshing water. The path will be wrong and their restoration is far off. When they find themselves filled with fear in dangerous situations of evil ideas and there is no one to protect them, the sheep are very vulnerable.  The sheep will end up ON the table of their enemies; empty, alone, without mercy.  Their only dwelling will be in the belly of those who would devour them.

When you think about the “Shepherd-less” in this way is it easier to understand the compassion Jesus had for them? Those around Him were hungry and thirsty, in need of restoration; unprotected, without truth to defend themselves with. Jesus gave them what they needed; He “began to teach them many things.”  He fed them what they desperately needed… Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.” John 6:35.

As a born again believer who is a new creation in Christ, one who has been properly fed and watered, restored, protected, in goodness and mercy, ready to dwell forever with THE Good Shepherd…do you have the compassion of Christ who dwells in you?

REFLECT:  What is Jesus teaching you?  Consider the hungry and thirsty around you who are lost and in need of the truth of eternal life that you carry in you.

REPENT:  Change your ways. Ask God to forgive you for not having a sensitive spirit of compassion willing to help with food, clothing, shelter…AND, in the best and greatest way possible, sharing the gospel with someone in need.

RESTORE:   Compassion is born out of love and is an extension of the unconditional love of Christ for you.  Share this love out of compassion for others.  Never forget that you were once among the “Shepherd-less.”

Ephesians 2:13  “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.”

Pastor Tom Bellhy