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God's Compassion for Sinners

Christ exemplified compassion toward sinful people.

I have never known a time when Christians have been more mad about more things than we are now. Over the last 30 years, something dramatic has happened in America. For hundreds of years the foundation of our land was built on JChristian truth. Suddenly everything changed. It wasn't our land anymore, and we who affirmed Christian principles found ourselves on the outside looking in — intimidated, marginalized, , and ridiculed.

As all of this unfolded, despair has turned into a souring, growing anger in God's people. We're angry about values, politics, television, media, education, the violation of the unborn, condoms, and criminals. This anger has given rise to a warrior instinct in the body of Christ that has left us with a radical profile. We're shouting more, and we're shooting at doctors of abortion clinics. Publicly we are perceived to be long on madness and short on mercy, to be more committed to our consternation than we are to compassion.

Something is out of joint in the body of Christ because our madness is unlike Christ. Although he always held to the truth, he did it with grace. His life and ministry were marked not by consternation but by compassion.

Christ exemplified moving to the core of the crowd.

Luke 15 contains three of the most famous parables in Scripture: the story of the shepherd who lost one of his hundred sheep and went to find it; the story of the widow woman who had a bag of coins, lost one of these coins, and went to find it; and the story of the lost son, which we call the Prodigal Son.

One might question what was happening in that moment that caused Jesus to tell these three stories. The answer to that is locked in verses one and two, which tell of a polarization between the ...

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Joseph Stowell is president of Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and author of numerous books, including Jesus Nation (Tyndale).

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Sermon Outline:

I. Introduction

Christians feel and exhibit anger toward the world around them.

II. Christ exemplified moving to the core of the crowd.

III. Christ does not condone the sin of the crowd.

IV. Christ demonstrated the value of the sinner in the Father's eyes.

Conclusion

God calls us to be the middleman in his compassion transactions.