TEXT: Mark 6:30-44

MESSAGE: “The Compassion of Jesus” 


OPENING: What is compassion?


How does Jesus define compassion?


TEXT: Mark 6:30-44


Galatians 2:10“Only, they asked us to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do.”


Question: What can we learn about the compassion of Jesus from today’s text?


It’s knowing that…(1. Jesus sees 2. Jesus empathizes 3. Jesus responds)


  1. Jesus sees (v. 30-34a)

The apostles returned to Jesus and told him all that they had done and taught. 31 And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. 32 And they went away in the boat to a desolate place by themselves. 33 Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they ran there on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them. 34 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd…”

34 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd…”

  • Jesus was hungry; tired; but he saw the crowd
  • When you’re hungry and tired, what do you see? We’ve invented a word for it — “Hangry” 
  • What the Bible should show us is that we are like the disciples and Jesus is always the hero. Jesus sees, despite all the obstacles.


Illustration: More than 65 years ago, Rev. Everett Swanson flew from Chicago to South Korea to minister to American troops fighting in the Korean War. During his time there, he grew increasingly troubled by the sight of hundreds of war orphans living on the streets, abandoned by society. One morning he saw city workers scoop up what looked like piles of rags and toss them into the back of a truck. He walked up to the truck for a closer look — and was horrified to see that the “piles” were not rags, but the frozen bodies of orphans who had died overnight in the streets.

Swanson could not turn his back on these unwanted children and vowed to find a way to help them.

  1. Jesus empathizes (v.34b-37)

“…and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And he began to teach them many things. 35 And when it grew late, his disciples came to him and said, “This is a desolate place, and the hour is now late. 36 Send them away to go into the surrounding countryside and villages and buy themselves something to eat.” 37 But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said to him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give it to them to eat?”


“Instead of being angry with the people for preventing the much needed rest, Jesus had compassion on them. The word (“compassion”) is used in the NT only by or about Jesus…” — James Brooks


“‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” — Matthew 4:4


  1. Jesus responds (v. 38-44)

And he said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” And when they had found out, they said, “Five, and two fish.” 39 Then he commanded them all to sit down in groups on the green grass. 40 So they sat down in groups, by hundreds and by fifties. 41 And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing and broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples to set before the people. And he divided the two fish among them all. 42 And they all ate and were satisfied.43 And they took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and of the fish. 44 And those who ate the loaves were five thousand men.”


“Mark probably wanted readers/hearers to think in terms of something more than physical satisfaction from all that Jesus gives.” 

— James Brooks



  • Rest in what Jesus has done.
  • Respond because of what Jesus has done.