Our selfishness towards God’s unlimited compassion – Part 1
In spite of the fact that we have continually been disobedient to God, He has shown so much compassion to us. True to the Scripture that God has no joy in the death of sinners, but to come to repentance (Ezekiel 18:31-32; Ezekiel 33:11), this grace of God we have benefitted, even when it is very obvious that we do not deserve it.
It is this unparalleled love of God for us that has kept everyone alive, for if human beings were to be in the position of God, nobody will be alive for seconds, except the most powerful among them. Furtherance to this, the Word of God made it absolutely clear in 2 Chronicles 7:14 that: “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and see my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” This particular position of God in dealing with the ever-sinful nature of man remains unchanged, and has given us the assurance of eternal kingdom, in as much as we can repent and live a holy life.
Meanwhile, we, the creatures of God, having been enjoying this unlimited compassion, have failed abysmally in extending same to fellow humans. We want God to forgive us all our sins, yet we find it difficult to forgive others. We cry to God, pleading for mercy, but when we have the opportunity to help others, we treat them so shabbily. Many have gone to the extent of destroying the future of others, on the basis of their perceived wrongdoing against them, but the following day, they themselves will go to God for His compassion.
Parable of the Uncompassionate Debtor (Matthew 18:21-35)
This was a story of a servant, whose master (king) had condemned to eternal slavery, for his inability to pay for his ten thousand talents’ debt. His case was so bad that, when it was obvious he had no way of paying the debt, the master ordered that he should be sold, alongside the wife and children, and all what he had, for the repayment of the debt.
According to the Scripture, this servant fell down and pleaded with his master, who then pitied his situation and had compassion on him (vs. 24-27). Just immediately, the same servant saw one of his fellow servants, who owed him just a hundred pence, and true to man’s nature, he held his throat, and refused to listen to the poor fellow’s plea.
This uncompassionate servant did not even stop at that, he threw the fellow servant into prison, till he would be able to pay the debt (vs. 29-30). Hear what the master said, when he was told of what the servant did: “Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, o thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me. Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee”?
Many of us, even practising Christians, behave like this unforgiving servant, and yet, we expect compassion from God. While God’s compassion could be said to be automatic for those who have humbled themselves in His presence, but the finality of this is a function of our ability to be compassionate unto others.
Meanwhile, let us look at the biblical story of Jonah and the people of Nineveh, which is the main Bible passage for this message.Jonah and the people of Nineveh
The scripture made mention that the people of Nineveh committed so much wickedness that God instructed Jonah to go and cry against the city (Jonah 1:1-2). Rather, Jonah ran away from this evangelical assignment to Tarshish (vs. 3).
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