TO HAVE COMPASSION IS NOT A COMMAND; IT IS AN EXPECTATION
JESUS HAS COMPASSION ON THE MIXED MULTITUDE (THE SAVED AND THE UNSAVED)
(Mat 14:13,14) When Jesus heard of it [that Herod had slain John the Baptist], he departed thence [from the Promised Land] by ship [on the Sea of Galilee] into a desert [Gk: lonesome, i.e. (by impl.) waste: desolate, solitary, wilderness] place apart [from the people, and to the east of Bethsaida (Heb: fishing-house)]: and when the people had heard thereof, they followed him on foot out of the cities. And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick.
1. Strong’s Concordance Greek = compassion: to have the bowels yearn, i.e. (fig.) feel sympathy, to pity:--have (be moved with) compassion /// an intestine (plur.); fig. pity or sympathy:--bowels, inward affection, + tender mercy.
2. Dictionary = compassion: 1. a feeling of sorrow or pity for the sufferings or misfortunes of another; sympathy. 2. compassionate –Syn. commiseration, mercy.
3. Dictionary = mercy: compassionate or kindly forebearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one’s power; compassion, pity, or benevolence.
4. Dictionary = mercy seat: 1. the gold covering on the ark of the covenant, regarded as the resting place of God (see Ex 25:17-22). 2. the throne of God.
5. The Full Life Study Bible: Compassion is an emotion which moves one to the very depth of his being. It involves a sorrow felt for another’s suffering and misfortune, accompanied by an intense desire to help. It is a characteristic both of God (“compassion” Deut 30:3; 2 Ki 13:23; “full of compassion” Psa 78:38, 111:4) and of His Son Jesus (“compassion” Mark 1:41, 8:2; “moved with compassion” Mat 9:36, 14:14; “compassion” Mat 15:32; Luke 7:13). In this present age of indifference to the suffering of others, Jesus expects this attitude to characterize His followers [The parable of the unforgiving servant: Mat 18:23-35; The parable of the good Samaritan: Luke 10:30-37].
THE DISCIPLES HAVE COMPASSION ON THE MIXED MULTITUDE (SAVED AND UNSAVED)
(Mat 14:15-18) And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time [for the evening meal] is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals [Gk: food]. But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart [departing from Jesus is not a good idea]; give ye them to eat [Neither God nor Jesus ever issued a command that cannot be obeyed]. And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes. He said, Bring them hither to me [and they obeyed].
COMPASSION IN ACTION – IS MULTIPLIED
(Mat 14:19-21) And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude. And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full. And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children.
(Mat 14:19-21) And he commanded the multitude [of saved and unsaved men (compassion)] to sit down on the grass [the Father must see the evidence of obedience. Why?], and took the five loaves [of bread, i.e., the Word of God], and the two fishes [representing two men, two now selfless mature ministers of the Word; He sent His disciples (learners) “by twos”] [“five loaves, and two fishes” that the disciples provided of their-selves (double-meaning)], and looking up to heaven [He displayed, presented the sacrificial offering to Father God], he blessed [showing the Father’s acceptance of the offering through the Son], and brake [multiplied (would they have been multiplied without the blessing?)], and gave the loaves [of bread, i.e., the Word of God ultimately symbolizing COMPASSION] to his disciples [Gk: learners, pupils (students)], and the disciples [correctly gave only that which they received from the Lord, which was their original sacrifice, now greatly multiplied] to the multitude. And they did all eat [the multitude and the disciples], and were filled [Gk: to gorge (supplied food in abundance): satisfied]: and they took up of the fragments [incomplete thoughts (effectual seeds)] that remained twelve baskets full [one basket full of provision for each apostle, i.e., for continued multiplication, ad infinitum]. And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children.
1. (Mark 6:39,40) And he commanded them to make all sit down [sharing godly authority with the disciples] by companies upon the green grass. And they sat down [obeyed] in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties [definite military phraseology and connotations].
2. Commentary: “And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass.” Why? 1. Those who wish to receive blessings from the Father must first show to God their “obedience” to His Word (the command). 2. Because our God continually brings order out of chaos (Gen 1:1-5); “for God is not the author of confusion,” (1 Cor 14:33). “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound [Gk: disciplined, self-controlled] mind.” (2 Tim 1:7).
3. Matthew Henry’s Commentary: The meat [the five loaves and two fishes] was multiplied, not in a heap at first, but in the distribution of it. As the widow’s oil [1 Ki 17:8-16] increased in the pouring out, so here the bread in the braking. Thus grace grows by being acted, and, while other things perish in the using, spiritual gifts increase in the using. God ministers seed to the sower, and multiplies not the seed hoarded up, but the seed sown (2 Cor 9:10). Thus there is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; that scattereth, and so increaseth. It is the same divine power, though exerted in an ordinary way, which multiplies the seed sown in the ground every year, and makes the earth yield her increase; so that what was brought out by handfuls, is brought home in sheaves. This is the Lord’s doing; it is by Christ that all natural things consist, and by the word of His power that they are upheld.