© 2011 • Hillcrest Church of Christ
What Makes Americans Compassionate?
by Danny Boggs
Polybius, a Greek, lived in ancient Rome during its rise as a superpower. He fell in love with what he saw happening politically in Rome but candidly confessed that “in Rome no one ever gives away anything to anyone if he can help it.” That culture crawled around the Mediterranean Sea as the empire spread. But then came Jesus.
In 2011, after a tornado ravages Joplin and people suffer, why do others come by the thousands with supplies and funds totaling millions? Because Jesus came. “We love because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19).
Jesus challenged even the most religious of people with an unforgettable parable (Luke 10:25-37). His own people had devised every loophole and excuse imaginable to dodge generosity. Then Jesus told a story about two unloving men, one loving man, and their reactions to a hurting man. Now even the most irreligious of people routinely use the phrase “Good Samaritan.” They admire Good Samaritans and will occasionally even play the role themselves.
But compassion was more than words and feelings with Jesus. He fed the hungry, healed the sick, offered comfort and hope, and even raised the dead. While America’s moral culture darkens with every average day, its culture of compassion revives with every news-making tragedy. Christian principles shaped this nation, and we haven’t abandoned all of them yet.
Jesus’ greatest compassion was to die for our sins. Now He sits at the right hand of God, eager to save and help us. “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16). May we help you learn how to draw near to Him?