“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” — 2 Corinthians 1:3, 4 (NIV84)

More and more, as I study the Word of God, I am drawn to the comparison of Christianity to other religions of the world. I am amazed when people say that there are basically no differences between the major world religions. I want to politely say, “Are you kidding me?” You see, there are huge and extreme differences between the world religions, and one of the most vivid differences is their differing views of God. Judaism and Christianity uniquely present a God who is kind and compassionate, even to those who are separated from Him. But this compassionate and comforting side of God is known especially by His people. Throughout the Scriptures, God is mindful of the suffering that His people are experiencing, and responds to them with grace, mercy, compassion, and comfort.

As Christians we see all those characteristics in the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. He was gracious and merciful to the broken and broken-hearted. He had compassion upon the sick and the suffering. He provided comfort to those who were overwhelmed with suffering and pain. Peter says, “After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace who called you into His eternal glory, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you” (1 Peter 5:10). But there is more! He comforts us so that we might in turn comfort others. God’s acts are never singular with intent. When He acts He gets a multi-layered return. Is anyone around you hurting or suffering? God has called us to reach out to one another with the same compassion and comfort that we have received from God. God uses us as His instruments to reach out to others with His grace and mercy.

He is truly the Father of compassion and God of all comfort! May He be such to you and through you!

Peace!

Pastor Tom

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