It was a humid August day as the two fishing vessels left their dock very early in the morning. The two captains of these boats were friends and yet at odds at the same time. Joe’s boat seemed as though it always needed something repaired; the crew was always told, “We’ll get to it as soon as we get back.” Gary’s boat, however, was immaculate and maintained to the hilt. Gary always made sure of oil, fuel, supplies, etc., while Joe was a little on the careless side. Those men would not forget this August day for a long time to come.
As the afternoon sky continued to get black there was worry on Gary’s vessel. They pulled in their lines and headed for home; Joe’s crew continued to fish. Gary, the conservative one, radioed Joe and said a very bad storm was on the radarscope and he should head for home. Joe did not heed the warning. The storm broke early and unexpectedly overtook Joe. The storm raged for what seemed like an eternity, though it was only for about 50 minutes. Gary heard the call. “Mayday! Mayday! We have run out of fuel and are getting battered terribly in this storm.” Gary, recognizing Joe’s voice, responded and said that help was on the way. Gary’s crew was livid, saying there wasn’t enough fuel to be able to tow them in. But, miraculously, Gary’s boat reached Joe’s and was able to tow them in through the storm. Both boats were spared. Gary had displayed unselfish compassion in going to Joe’s aid.
Compassion (awareness of another’s suffering coupled with a desire to alleviate it) is a wonderful character trait. It was seen in perfect fullness in the life of our Lord Jesus. In Matthew 14:14 we see His compassion: “And Jesus went forth and was moved with compassion toward them, and He healed their sick.” The evening had come and they had not eaten so the disciples wanted to send them on their way. But again, the compassion of Christ was seen. “But Jesus said unto them, ‘they need not depart; give them to eat’” (Matt 14:16). There were only five loaves of bread and two fishes.
The Savior’s all-sufficiency is coupled with His marvelous compassion. He fed the five thousand plus people and, so ample was the provision that there were “leftovers.” It was a miracle. But a greater miracle of compassion involves you and me. The Lord Jesus Christ has compassion for you and me because we are sinners and He proved this by laying down His life at Calvary for all mankind. What He accomplished is a completed work. In John 19:30 Jesus said, “It is finished!” It is all done! His compassion and His all-sufficiency are evident. He is “able” and “mighty” to save.
The Lord Jesus has the same compassion for each one of us as He did for the thief on the cross. He loves me and died for me on Calvary’s tree. He calls on us to “repent and believe the gospel.” He promises to “have mercy” and to “abundantly pardon” (Isa 55:7). He displayed His unbounded compassion by shedding His blood for you. You will discover His all-sufficiency by trusting Him and thereby learning the truth of 1 John 1:7, “The blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanseth us from all sin.” Trust Christ today!