Compassion: A Month-Long Scripture Writing Study

I have another scripture writing list for you all today, along with a continuation of the study we started last week with “God’s Parental Compassion.” As with my other Free 30-Day Scripture Writing Plans, I started out by studying all the words in the Bible (English, Greek, and Hebrew) related to the topic. I narrowed that down to about 50-60 scriptures, then started praying and stitching them together to get the 31-day list that I’m sharing here for the month of December.

If you write all these verses out, then go back and read through them they should form something like a narrative. It made me so happy to see that emerge; as I’ve talked about many times before, I love to think of the Bible as a “love story” that God is sharing with us and using to invite us to live with Him as part of a great narrative He’s composing. The fact that story arcs within scripture connect so well is one of the greatest proofs that the Bible is a cohesive “God-breathed” text. For example, I start off this study with these three scriptures:

But a certain Samaritan, as he traveled, came where he was. When he saw him, he was moved with compassion, came to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. He set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. …Now which of these three do you think seemed to be a neighbor to him who fell among the robbers?”

He said, “He who showed mercy on him.”

Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

Luke 10:33-34, 36-37, WEB

But whoever has the world’s possessions and sees his fellow Christian in need and shuts off his compassion against him, how can the love of God reside in such a person?

1 John 3:17, NET

A traveler came to the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to prepare for the wayfaring man who had come to him, but took the poor man’s lamb, and prepared it for the man who had come to him.”

David’s anger burned hot against the man, and he said to Nathan, “As Yahweh lives, the man who has done this deserves to die! He must restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity!”

2 Samuel 12:4-6, WEB

Jesus’s parable, John’s reminder, and David’s reaction to the prophet Nathan’s story all highlight the same idea–God places a high value on His people showing compassion. Compassion is one of the things that shows whether we are or are not becoming more like God. And if we learn (as David did) that we’ve failed to show compassion we ought to repent and ask God for His compassion, as David does in the next verse on my list:

Have mercy on me, O God, because of your loyal love.
Because of your great compassion, wipe away my rebellious acts.
Wash away my wrongdoing.
Cleanse me of my sin.

Psalm 51:1-2, NET

Compassion is one of God’s most prominent character traits. It’s closely associated with His mercy and His loyal, covenant love. We benefit so much from God’s compassion. The more we realize how much compassion He shows us, the more motivated we should be to show similar compassion to others. Ultimately, I think that’s what this study of compassion is about–learning more about God’s compassion so that we can properly appreciate what He does for us and model that character trait in out own lives. I hope you’ll consider joining me for this month-long study.

Click here to download a printable scripture list:

Featured image by Corey David Robinson from Lightstock

Song Recommendation: “Great is Thy Faithfulness”

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