1 John 3:14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.
15 Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.
16 Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
17 But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?
18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.
19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.
The Bible associates love with action. In this passage, the Bible speaks of the believer’s love for other believers, relating it to the Lord’s crucifixion. If a Christian knows and recognizes the love of God, it should drastically affect his relationships. He cannot deal with others as the world would because the love of God has formed compassion within in his heart. This matter is so important to the Lord that He provided believers with a scenario to help judge their level of compassion. The book of First John says that if a brother has a need, and another brother can help him with his need, yet refuses, he lacks compassion (see also James 2:15-16). Therefore, one’s deeds, not simply one’s words alone, demonstrate true love!
- (For children): We need to do good to all people, but especially to our church family. What are some ways that we can help our pastor, our song leader, our Sunday School teacher, the elderly and those who clean the church, etc?
- (For everyone): Compassion requires action. If there is no action attached to one’s desires, true love or compassion does not exist. The greatest example was given by Christ when He died on the cross. What are other examples of compassion that come to mind?
- Do you love your brothers and sisters in Christ? What have you done for others to show your love for them? Have you prayed for them? Have you helped them in a time of need?
- Ask God to provide opportunities for you to show compassion toward others.
- Ask God to help you love others in spite of how they or others may have mistreated you.