There are so many Bible verses about compassion that can deepen our faith and draw us closer to God. These Scriptures are so meaningful because we are always in need of God’s grace, mercy, and compassion in our lives. Not only do we need God’s compassion, but he can teach us how to extend grace and compassion towards those around us.
Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!Isaiah 30:18
What is Compassion in the Bible?
One of the Hebrew words for compassion is ḥeseḏ, which means goodness, kindness, faithfulness, and mercy (source). Another word is rāḥam, which means to love deeply, to have mercy, to be compassionate, to have tender affection (source). God’s Word reminds us that the Lord has been gracious and compassionate towards us each day.
God’s compassion reminds me of a time when I tended to my young daughter many years ago. I remember checking on my sleeping 20 month old at around 12:30 am. The temperature in the room drastically dropped, and I discovered that my daughter had curled herself into a tiny ball, trying to keep herself warm with only a thin onesie on and her favorite blanket tightly tucked under her chest like a plush teddy bear.
I touched her skin, and she was freezing. Miniature goosebumps covered her body. I also realized that her diaper had leaked; soaking her shirt and the sheet she slept on, making her even colder. I immediately scooped her up, changed her soggy diaper, put on a clean onesie, pants, socks, and a long-sleeve shirt (all in her drowsy slumber).
I then grabbed a heavier blanket and laid it on top of her as she rested peacefully on my chest. I relished this precious moment, holding her close, allowing the warmth of my body to transfer to hers. Then my eyes filled with tears. What I had done to my daughter was a beautiful picture of what our Abba Father has done for us.
As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him…Psalm 103:13
I saw my little girl’s need and felt nothing but love and compassion for her. I stepped in for her and did what she could not do for herself.
And so it is with us.
God scooped us out of our shivering, soiled mess and rescued us from the pit of sin and shame we wallowed in. We were uncovered. Unprotected. Cold, alone, and completely helpless. But he looked down on us with compassion.
He changed our filthy garments of sin and clothed us in the warmth of his love and grace. He holds us close to him and calls us his beloved children.
The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love…Psalm 103:8
Learning from the Compassion of Jesus
Throughout the gospel accounts Jesus looked upon the suffering and marginalized around him with love and compassion.
- When Jesus saw the crowds of 4,000 and 5,000 he had compassion on them, healed the sick, and fed them (Matt 15:32; Matt 14:14).
- He looked on the two blind men with compassion and healed them (Matt 20:34).
- He felt compassion for the man with leprosy and touched him, bringing about his complete healing (Mark 1:40).
Christ’s compassion for humanity always led to action. He saw their needs and met them with love, dignity and justice. He demonstrated the fullness of his love and compassion by taking our place and suffering on our behalf. His compassion for us ultimately led him to the cross.
How to Wear Clothing of Compassion
As you perform your duties and run your errands today, don’t forget to look around you. Do you see someone in need of His magnificent salvation? This world is saturated with suffering souls in need of his grace.
Paul gives us this charge:
Clothe yourselves with compassion…Colossians 3:12
Since we are clothed with the garments of God’s amazing love and salvation, we are now called to look at others through the same lens of his compassion.
Let his compassion lead you to action.
39 Bible Verses About Compassion
Here are 39 Bible verses about compassion that you can use to focus on God’s love and compassion for you, and to give you encouragement to show compassion towards those around you.
Bible Verses about Compassion in the Old Testament
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Psalm 51:1
But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. Psalm 86:15
You will arise and have compassion on Zion, for it is time to show favor to her; the appointed time has come. Psalm 102:13
…who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. Psalm 103:3-5
The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. Psalm 103:8
As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him… Psalm 103:13
He has caused his wonders to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and compassionate. Psalm 111:4
Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous. Psalm 112:4
The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion. Psalm 116:5
Let your compassion come to me that I may live, for your law is my delight. Psalm 119:77
Your compassion, Lord, is great; preserve my life according to your laws. Psalm 119:156
For the Lord will vindicate his people and have compassion on his servants. Psalm 135:14
The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. Psalm 145:8
The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. Psalm 145:9
But you are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love. Therefore you did not desert them… Nehemiah 9:17
Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him! Isaiah 30:18
Shout for joy, you heavens; rejoice, you earth; burst into song, you mountains! For the Lord comforts his people and will have compassion on his afflicted ones. Isaiah 49:13
“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! Isaiah 49:15
The Lord will surely comfort Zion and will look with compassion on all her ruins; he will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the Lord. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the sound of singing. Isaiah 51:3
In a surge of anger I hid my face from you for a moment, but with everlasting kindness I will have compassion on you,” says the Lord your Redeemer. Isaiah 54:8
Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you. Isaiah 54:10
I will tell of the kindnesses of the Lord, the deeds for which he is to be praised, according to all the Lord has done for us— yes, the many good things he has done for Israel, according to his compassion and many kindnesses. Isaiah 63:7
‘I will show you compassion so that he will have compassion on you and restore you to your land.’ Jeremiah 42:12
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. Lamentations 3:22
Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. Lamentations 3:32
“This is what the Lord Almighty said: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another. Zechariah 7:9
“On the day when I act,” says the Lord Almighty, “they will be my treasured possession. I will spare them, just as a father has compassion and spares his son who serves him.
Bible Verses about Compassion in the New Testament
When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Matthew 9:36
When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick. Matthew 14:14
Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. I do not want to send them away hungry, or they may collapse on the way.” Matthew 15:32
Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him. Matthew 20:34
So he got up and went to his father. “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. Luke 15:20
For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” Romans 9:15
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort… 2 Corinthians 1:3
Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Ephesians 4:32
Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Philippians 2:1-2
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Colossians 3:12
As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy. James 5:11
Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. 1 Peter 3:8
I hope that these Bible verses about compassion have encouraged you as you relish in the love and tender mercy of our God. Serving others with God’s love with grace and compassion is like washing the very feet of Jesus himself. So feed his sheep. Clothe his flock. True compassion is not prideful or self-righteous, but it is a tender love and concern for the suffering of others. Put on your garments of compassion today, and propel others forward into his Kingdom!
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