Books:

Serene Compassion: A Christian Appreciation of Buddhist Holiness
By: Denise Lardner Carmody

On God and Dogs: A Christian Theology of Compassion for Animals
By: Stephen H. Webb

Commandments of Compassion
By: James F. Keenan

An Open Heart: Practicing Compassion in Everyday Life
By: Dalai Lama


Want more books?
Visit the Whosoever Bookstore

Or search Amazon.com for books related to GLBT people and Christianity.

GLBT Christianity Book Search


Other Articles By Lucas Hawkins:

Gospel of Grace

Falling from grace is painful. It is something we should strive to avoid. However, it does not close heaven's gates, as the context of Galatians 5:4 makes clear. Sadly, those who believe that it does do not believe the gospel of grace.


Explore More Whosoever:


The Compassion of our Savior

by: Lucas Hawkins


Picture Him, the eyes of the Lord, as the prophet Isaiah did, in heaven's temple, high and lifted up, seated upon His throne. Then see Him, as Peter and the other disciples did, on Golgotha, high and lifted up, hanging upon the Cross.

Whether it was on the shores of Galilee, in the press of the crowds of Capernaum, or in the garden on the morning of the Resurrection, the most powerful aspect of Christ's appearance were His eyes.

Isaiah 53:2 says that He had "no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him." Yet over and over in the Gospels, we read how He beheld all manner of men. People were healed and the lost received eternal life.

I want to show you the compassion of our Savior. We will soon see Him as the Eternal Lamb, slain from the foundation of the world, seated upon the throne of God. And in spite of all the beauty of heaven, I believe that once we behold Him face to face, we won't want to take our eyes off the compassionate eyes of our loving Savior.

The eyes of a dove, the power of the lamb

"His eyes are as the eyes of doves by the rivers of waters, washed with milk, and fitly set" (Song of Solomon 5:12).

In Song of Solomon 5:12, the eyes of the Lord are "dove's eyes" - the manifestation of His purity. Eyes are like windows of the soul. Looking into His eyes, we see who He is - His tenderheartedness, His kindness, and His love.

Consider this, as you read this message: His eyes are like doves' eyes. But He adds that they are like doves' eyes "by the rivers of waters." Out of the emotions of a person who is filled with the Holy Spirit come rivers of living water (John 7:38) - sparkling and filled with energy and freshness.

"Washed with milk" is a phrase that speaks of tender thoughts in the mind of God, filled with all the tenderness of His compassion.

"Fitly set" describes His eyes that are always properly proportioned, properly expressing His character of love and His nature of redemption.

Behold the Lamb of God

As you think of the eyes of the Lord, consider Revelation 5:6:

"In the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent forth into all the earth."

Here we see Jesus Christ as the Lamb in the midst of the throne. Notice that He is still a Lamb, even though the crucifixion is past. After His resurrection, He is still the Lamb, slain from the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8).

We will have no trouble knowing who Jesus is when we get to heaven. He is still the Lamb "as it had been slain." Throughout all eternity, the fresh wounds will remain in His side, His hands, His feet, and His brow. We will see the Lamb glorified. The wounds will have no blood because it was already poured out. He will be glorified forever as a Lamb who had the power to take away the sins of the world.

Seven Horns of Power

In Scripture, horns speak of power. The seven horns in Revelation 5:6 refer to seven manifestations of the Finished Work for sinners. The first horn stands for the power of God's love that accepts us by grace through faith when we believe, which receives us just as we are when we express faith in Jesus Christ. It is the power of God's love (John 3:16).

Second, Jesus Christ had the power to become sin for us when He knew no sin (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Third, He had the power to die for our sins and to pay for them, satisfying the justice of God the Father (Romans 3:25; 1 John 2:2).

Fourth is His power over death so that it has no sting (1 Corinthians 15:55).

Fifth, Jesus Christ demonstrated His power over the grave. Because of the power of Resurrection, the grave has no victory (1 Corinthians 15:55).

Sixth, He possessed the power to defeat the devil through the power of the Ascension. When Satan attacked Him with all the demons of hell, Jesus Christ ascended (Colossians 2:15), brushing off the demons that tried to stop the Ascension in their last effort to abort the Finished Work of Christ.

The seventh power is His ability to present us faultless at the Throne before God the Father (Jude 24) even though we are not perfect.

Thank God for the seven horns of power that belong to the Lord.

Seven Eyes

After God mentions the seven horns of power, He refers to seven eyes and seven spirits. Regarding His tender eyes, the first is the eye of mercy. In Psalm 85:10, mercy met truth, and righteousness and peace kissed each other. As a result, truth has sprung out of the earth and righteousness is revealed from heaven. So the first eye speaks of mercy - which means that God withholds the judgment we deserve because His justice has been satisfied with the perfect sacrifice of His Son.

The second eye of the Lamb is the eye of grace - God's grace which always gives us gifts and blessings we do not deserve (Romans 5:15).

The third is the eye of redemption. He redeemed us freely and completely with His blood, by His grace (Romans 3:24).

The fourth is the eye of reconciliation. Satan erected and has maintained all the barriers that keep sinful men from God: the barrier of sin, the barrier of the old sin nature, the barrier of spiritual death. Every single barrier is gone, and we have been reconciled to God according to His Word (2 Corinthians 5:19- 20; Colossians 1:21).

Fifth, we have the eye of forgiveness (Psalm 130: 4; Colossians 1:14).

The sixth eye reveals that right at this moment, we are seated above in heavenly places in our position with Christ (Ephesians 2:6).

Seventh is the eye that makes us overcomers (Romans 8:37). When we sin, grace abounds much more. Grace reigns through the righteousness we received as a gift the moment we were saved (Romans 5:17).

The seven horns and the seven eyes represent the seven spirits of the precise manifestation of the Finished Work in the detailed account of God's nature toward sinful men.

What Jesus saw teaches us how to see

The eyes of Jesus are tender, intimate, personal, and very compassionate.

In John 4:7, Jesus saw a Samaritan woman who had five husbands. Now she was living with a sixth man but was not married to him.

Samaria was a place where the Lord Jesus and His disciples normally would not go. His disciples did not like the Samaritans. The Samaritans inhabited the land of Israel during the Babylonian captivity and therefore were despised by the Jewish nation (see 2 Kings 17:24-41).

But Jesus was kind to the Samaritans (Luke 10:30-35). He went to that well on purpose, met the woman at noon, won her, forgave her, and made her a soul winner in the same moment. He saw her, evangelized her, forgave her, and made her His own in a moment.

In John 9:1, Jesus saw a man who had been blind from birth, and He healed his eyes. The Lord understood his blindness. He understood what was going on in this man's heart and healed him.

In Matthew 8:2-3, He saw a person who was a leper. The leper said, "Lord, will you heal me?" And He said, "I will. Be thou clean." He saw that single individual. Jesus saw the leper.

In Matthew 9:2, He saw a person with palsy. Jesus forgave his sins and, in verse 6, healed him. But even beyond that person, the Word of God says in Matthew 9:2 that He saw their faith - the faith of four people who had brought the man to Him. Jesus saw their faith.

The Eyes of God Are Upon You

The eyes of the Lord are every where as they behold good and evil and the needs of individuals (Proverbs 15:3). In Zechariah 4:10, His eyes are described as seven lamps, going to and fro through the earth. Throughout the Gospels, Jesus saw the faith of men and women who believed He could heal them.

And today, Jesus sees your faith.

In Matthew 14:14, His eyes saw a multitude. They were sick, and some were oppressed by demons. Moved with compassion, He healed all the sick. He saw them pass, His eyes fell upon them, and immediately He was moved with compassion.

In Matthew 15:32, He saw people who were hungry. Here was One who Himself, at times, had no place to lay His head (Matthew 8:20). They did not have food, and He was moved with compassion to feed the multitude with five loaves of bread and two fishes.

He saw the crowds, but He also saw individuals. He saw the woman with a blood disease. He saw a blind man. He was always looking with tender eyes. As long as you live, remember and consider the tender eyes of Jesus.

The Eyes of the Responder

In terms of her response, the Word of God says that the eyes of His Bride, which is the Church, were "like the fish pools in Heshbon, by the gate of Bathrabbim" (Song of Solomon 7:4).

A pool is not a fountain, and it is not a river. A pool is quiet. It is open to receive light, to receive what heaven gives it but it is quiet. Therefore, that verse is speaking of a soul that is quiet. This is a soul that receives from heaven. It speaks of a growing soul that is more contented to simply receive than to exercise works or to fret. This soul is a Christian who has not yet become a fountain, but he is one who is in the process of growing by receiving grace, the love of God, and the power of His Word.

A great example is when the prophet Isaiah saw the Lord upon His throne, high and lifted up, and His train filled the temple (Isaiah 6:1). Isaiah's eyes were opened after King Uzzsiah, whom he loved and respected, died. Convicted by what he saw, Isaiah said, "Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts" (Isaiah 6:5).

In the presence of perfect holiness, Isaiah was aware of his sinful state. So, one of the seraphim attending God's throne took a live coal from off the altar and laid it upon Isaiah's mouth. Immediately, the prophet was purged from sin and his iniquity was taken away with the fire from off the altar.

Then hearing the voice of the Lord, which said, "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" Isaiah replied, "Here am I; send me" (Isaiah 6:8).

Isaiah was like that pool. Now he was in a place of receiving what he needed, gladly accepting it by grace and through faith, willing to do what he was told to do. He was not yet a river. He was not yet a fountain. But he was a quiet soul being still before His God and not living in anxiety.

The Perfect Servant

"Who is blind, but my servant? or deaf, as my messenger that I sent? who is blind as he that is perfect, and blind as the LORD's servant?" (Isaiah 42:19).

This speaks of someone who has been accepted in the Lord Jesus Christ, who is perfect in Him, and who can walk by faith and not by sight. It is a believer who is no longer hurt by the rejection of people nor by the fear of God's rejection. They are blind, because they trust Him completely, having faith in what God says and not in what things look like by sight (Isaiah 11:3).

The Syrophenician woman had that quality of faith (Mark 7:25-30). Even when Jesus discouraged her and did not answer her, insinuating that He agreed with the disciples that she was a dog. Then He delivered her daughter and declared that this woman will always be remembered for her great faith. She had to believe Him while she exercised faith, and she couldn't see Him any other way that through the eyes of faith.

Lift up your eyes

A servant of God has to trust God without wavering. We can see that throughout the Word of God. In John 11:6, Mary and Martha waited four days before Jesus went to raise their brother from that dead.

When Jesus didn't come while Lazarus was still alive, Mary and Martha became upset, which revealed that they did not trust Him. A mature servant will trust God despite his feelings. He does not feel rejected just because something doesn't happen when he asks.

The servant trusts God when He takes loved ones home to heaven instead of healing them on earth. He trusts God through faith in God's Word, believing that He is faithful. He knows that the eyes of the Lord run to and fro through the whole earth (Zechariah 4:10) and that God always does the right thing, in spite of all the sad things that happen in this world.

"Thou Hast Found Grace in My Sight"

In the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-11), Jesus said, "Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:3), speaking of someone who is broken.

Paul said in Ephesians 3:8 that he was "less than the least." Responsible for the deaths of many Christians, Paul became a broken man; and God said, "Yours is the Kingdom of heaven."

"Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted" - not just in the future, but immediately (Matthew 5:4). When Paul became broken, he mourned, and God comforted him.

"Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth" (Matthew 5:5). Meekness is a gift from God and it means to be God-conscious, to always have His thoughts as our perspective and frame of reference.

"Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled" (Matthew 5:6). Once a person becomes meek, he begins to hunger and thirst after God's righteousness, and he is constantly being filled.

"Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy (Matthew 5:7). Then, God says, "Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God" (Matthew 5:8). Their eyes see God in the tenderness of His compassion.

Matthew 5:9 says, "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God." And, "Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:10).

That is how a Christian grows, under the convicting and caring eyes of the Lord as He teaches us the Word of God.

Do We Have Our Father's Eyes?

In Song of Solomon 1:15, we see the tender eyes of a woman: "Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold thou art fair; thou hast doves' eyes." The Bride's eyes are tender, like doves' eyes. The most beautiful thing about a dove is his eyes.

In Proverbs 27:20, the Word of God says, "Hell and destruction are never full, so the eyes of man are never satisfied." Instead of having eyes that are never satisfied, the Bride's eyes are satisfied, fulfilled, and every desire is met.

Even when it seems by sight that Jesus didn't come through, faith knows that His eyes are tender. Faith knows that He has paid for every sin. Faith understands the seven horns of power and the seven spirits that reveal the Finished Work of Calvary, imparting seven "eyes" or attributes of God for sinful men.

The Samaritan woman whom Jesus met at the well began to win souls as soon as she was saved. Yet, even though they witnessed her conversion, all the disciples could think about was food. When they encourage Him to eat, Jesus was still rejoicing over one soul who was saved. He said, "I have meat that ye know not of," referring to the fullness that comes from being filled with the Spirit (see John 4:25-34).

Seeing Is Understanding

To get their eyes off worldly constraints and details of life, Jesus told the disciples: "Do not say, `Four months, and then we'll be ready for the harvest.' Lift up your eyes now; for the fields are ripe. They are white and ready to harvest" (see John 4:35).

We need to lift up our eyes with the tender eyes of the Bride - eyes that have grown from the quiet fish pools of Heshbon, only receiving without giving, into eyes that are fountains and rivers, reflecting and pouring out the seven spirits of God in the Finished Work.

As we begin to understand what it means to have those eyes, we see men, women, and young people in terrible situations, and we are able to help them see what God sees in them. We see people who need a touch from God, and our eyes are filled with what God has given us through the eyes of faith. Our new eyes are tender, sensitive, and intimate, because the Holy Spirit reflects through us and in us the truth that love is never going to change, that grace will reign beyond sin, and that mercy will rejoice beyond judgment. God's light is eternal, and it will never, never fail as it lives in us and flows through us like a river of living water.

Conclusion

In Revelation 1:14, the Lord Jesus Christ has eyes as a flaming fire - all-seeing, all-consuming, and all-penetrating. The flames of that fire consume all of our sins. His eyes look with tenderness upon every need that we have. When we allow Christ to minister with His eyes, they penetrate, satisfying every need.

One day soon, we shall see Him as He is. We shall behold Him in all of His glory. For now, we are learning to walk by faith instead of by the sight of our eyes. We begin as pools that receive from heaven through the faithfulness of a pastor-teacher who imparts truth by the Word of God. Then we will be fountains that overflow with eternal life, giving glory to God. At last, we become rivers that flow out to others in fellowship with like-minded believers, bringing Christ to the nations.

PRAYER

Thank You, Father, for having eyes of compassion that see everything about us in the Finished Work of Redemption. May we have those eyes when we look in the mirror and upon people and situations. But especially, we pray that we would reflect your eyes of compassion, reverence, and awesome gratitude as we look upon each other and the lost souls to whom You lead us. In Jesus' name, Amen.


Copyright © 2002 by the author
All Rights Reserved


What's your opinion? We want to know!! Send a letter to the editor, write to the author of this article by clicking on their name at the top of the article, or fill out our reader survey!!

Back To The Table of Contents