You are here:Home-Resources-Counsel of Chalcedon Magazine-2005 Issue 4-The Model for Witness: The Person of Christ

The Model for Witness: The Person of Christ

Jesus Christ came not only to die for our sins, He came to preach and teach and bear witness to the gospel, and in so doing to draw people to Himself as their Lord and Savior. He was moved by an all-consuming desire to glorify His Father and by a deep compassion for lost sinners that moved him not only to want to reach them by His words but to shed His own blood for them that they might be saved from everything that was separating them from God and life and joy. He had the world on His heart and so He sacrificed Himself for the life of the world, John 6:51, becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross, Philippians 2:8, to purchase for God with (His) blood people from every tribe and tongue and people and nation, Revelation 5:9.

When Jesus saw multitudes of people lost in sin, He felt compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd, Mark 6:34. He taught His disciples that compassion ought to be extended to everybody, even our enemies, Matthew 5:43-48, Luke 10:30-37. The word compassion, splangna, literally refers to the upper viscera: lungs, heart, liver, denoting warm tender affections and concern. Jesus felt compassion when He saw people distressed, oppressed, downcast, hurting, hungry, ignorant, blind, leprous, demon-possessed, in debt, grieving, guilt-ridden, abusing themselves. All kinds of human suffering, physical and spiritual, caused by human sin, drew out Jesus' compassion; and His compassion always moved Him to action, to do what He could to relieve their need and to save them from sin and all its consequences. For instance, when He saw a woman grieving over her dead son, He did not wait for her to ask for His help, He was moved in His great heart by her grief to turn her darkness into light and her sorrow into joy by raising her son from the dead.