<<pity, feeling sorry>>

David said, “I looked for sympathy but found none” (Ps 69:20).

Sympathy is expressing support for another’s misfortune. Although it gives attention to their need and feels for them in their predicament, besides

Move beyond pity to relieving the pain

wishing them well, to be effective our concern should extend to some practical outworking in action. This is real compassion and may prove costly (Isa 58:7; Lk 10:33-35; Jas 2:15-17; 1 Jn 3:18). Do I just see the need without getting involved in it? Jesus did not just pity us in our helpless sinful condition; He voluntarily gave His life that we might live. In our daily struggles, the Lord shares in our distress. He enters into it and is affected too, having experienced intense suffering during His time on earth (Isa 63:9; Jn 11:35; Heb 4:15). In like manner, we are to bear one another’s burdens, putting ourselves in their place (Lk 6:31; Gal 6:2; Heb 13:3).

See also: compassion, empathy, golden rule, involvement, support.

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